A physiatrist is a medical specialist in Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation – an expert in the brain, spinal cord, nerves, muscles, bones, joints, ligaments and tendons who treats injuries or ilnesses that affect how a person moves or functions.
We strive to promote physical activity and movement in people with physical disabilities from any cause, and optimize our patients’ function and quality of life.
Your physiatrist will:
- Diagnose and treat pain or dysfunction as a result of an injury, illness, or disabling condition,
- Focus on treating the whole person and develop a comprehensive plan to improve function,
- Collaborate with other medical professionals including physiotherapists, occupational therapists, orthotists, and prosthetists to enhance patient care, and
- Work with other physicians including family physicians, neurologists, rheumatologists, orthopedic surgeons, neurosurgeons, and many others.
Our physiatrists have specialized training in both general musculoskeletal medicine as well as sports medicine. They can diagnose and perform injections for management of joint, tendon, or nerve-related pain.
- Peripheral joint and soft tissue injections including:
- Viscosupplementation (i.e. Durolane, Cingal)
- Platelet rich plasma (PRP)
- Peripheral nerve injections with lidocaine +/- corticosteroid
- Spasticity treatment (i.e. Botox)
Depending on the illness or injury, your physiatrist may perform electromyography (EMG) / nerve conduction studies. This is a test of how the peripheral nerves function and is done to assess conditions such as carpal tunnel syndrome, pinched nerves in the neck/back, etc.
- The first portion of the test is called “nerve conduction studies”
- The doctor will deliver a small electrical stimulus over the nerves and record how fast and strong the nerves function
- The second portion may or may not be required and is called “needle EMG”
- The doctor will insert a small acupuncture-size needle into the muscles to determine how the nerves communicate with the muscles