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Surgery, no matter how small the procedure, creates tissue damage. Naturally, the intended target of the surgery is mended, but all the surrounding tissues are damaged in the process. As a result, our body lays down scar tissue. Scar tissue occurs both in the body and on the surface of the skin. Even our bones callus over and remodel only years later. Scar tissue serves a short-term purpose: It restricts movement while the tissues heal. However, all the current research indicates that early movement and return of normal physiologic motion will cause the tissues to heal in the appropriately aligned, mobile and extensible state that they should. In addition, swelling and edema post-surgery can cause secondary tissue damage and dysfunction, and increase one’s sensitivity to pain. Physical therapy helps prevent or decrease this swelling or edema. The days of recommending bed rest following surgery are over as prolonged inactivity leads to a host of new problems even as the old ones remain. To improve function and speed-up your recovery, Functional Manual Therapy® (FMTTM) is the answer.
What is Functional Manual Therapy®(FMTTM)?
Functional Manual Therapy® is not a technique or even a system of techniques, but a unique and comprehensive approach to the art of healing and restoring function. World leaders in physical therapy, Gregory and Vicky Johnson, founded The Institute of Physical Art and the FMT approach in the mid-1970s in the USA. Since its inception, only two hundred therapists worldwide have completed the thousands of hours of course work, training and mentorship to become Certified Functional Manual Therapists (CFMT). FMTTM fuses, synthesizes and integrates all aspects of physical care. We begin with comprehensive evaluation techniques that look at every individual as completely unique. Two people with the precise same pain may have entirely different treatment needs, and we have the skills and knowledge to get to the core of the problem. And it doesn’t stop there. What sets us apart is that we methodically dissect your symptoms to better understand the true source of your pain. What further makes us unique is that a Functional Manual Therapist is willing to assess every tissue and movement pattern to discover that source of pain and the appropriate path to recovery.
How is FMTTM different from standard Physical Therapy?
FMT provides Functional MobilizationTM (FM) for post-surgical scars and adhered tissues, both at the site of surgery and any associated tissue restrictions pre-existing or secondary to the surgery. It restores accessory play of the joints to make return of full physiological range of motion as painless as possible. It specifically assesses muscle function at the surgical site as well as other areas of the body, to ensure that appropriate movement strategies are restored after treatment.
What types of surgeries can benefit from FMTTM?
From full joint replacements and open reduction internal fixations to “minor” arthroscopic procedures, all surgeries can benefit from FMTTM to speed-up recovery and optimize efficient function. Even non-orthopedic surgeries such as heart surgery, appendectomy, abdominal surgeries etc. need skilled therapy. If left untreated, the underlying scar tissue will alter the normal mechanics of the body and lead to pain.
My doctor has specific instructions and exercises for me. How will that fit in with the FMTTM approach?
We will always follow your surgeon’s protocol for a range of motion limitations, weight-bearing status and level of resistance you can utilize. We will stay in close contact with your surgeon to make him/her aware of your progress. General exercises recommend after surgeries are like pages from a cookbook – everyone gets the same recipe. Our Functional Manual Therapists are the master chefs who can find the perfect combination of ingredients.