Q. What is orthopaedic manual physical therapy (OMPT)?
A. Orthopaedic manual physical therapy or OMPT is a “hands-on” approach that focuses on treating the underlying cause of musculoskeletal pain and disability, not just the symptoms. Research suggests that OMPT in combination with a supervised exercise program is extremely effective in the treatment of common musculoskeletal pathologies such as neck/back pain, herniated discs, sciatica, rotator cuff pathologies, hip/knee arthritis, post spinal surgery, and joint replacements among others.
Q. How is OMPT approach different from traditional physical therapy?
A. Musculoskeletal conditions involving injuries, surgery, and/or degenerative conditions often result in abnormal joint mechanics, leading to pain and loss of function. Traditional physical therapy is comprised of an exercise program in combination with modalities to treat the pain. However, OMPT approach involves evaluation of small accessory movements of joints of spine or extremities and restoration of normal joint mechanics that is usually the underlying cause of pain, thus providing quicker, more superior outcomes.
Q. Is OMPT covered by insurance?
A. Being part of physical therapy practice, OMPT is covered by all insurances. However, one will need a referral from their physician (MD or DO), physician assistant, dentist, or podiatrist. In the era of rising co-pays and deductibles, OMPT approach requires fewer numbers of visits than the traditional physical therapy to treat the source of pain and symptoms.
Q. How is a Fellow of American Academy of Orthopaedic Manual Physical Therapists different from other physical therapists?
A. Becoming a Fellow in the American Academy of Orthopaedic Manual Physical Therapists (AAOMPT) is a membership classification and a professional credential. The “Fellow” is a physical therapist who has demonstrated advanced clinical, analytical, and hands-on skills in the treatment of musculoskeletal disorders and is internationally recognized for their competence and expertise in the practice of manual physical therapy. Fellowship in OMPT is a two year postgraduate training program and is the only credentialed manual therapy program by American Physical Therapy Association. Less than 1% of physical therapists nationwide have been able to earn this distinction.