In this issue

Tendinopathy

Work Site Visits

Exercise

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Services

Hand Therapy
Splinting
Arthritis Management
Pain Management
Fibreglass casting
Hydrotherapy
Scar Management

Team members

Director

Karen Fitt

Hand Therapists

Karen Fitt
Crystal Goodwin
Kate Crump
Melissa Whitten
(maternity leave)
Jeff Sanderson
Brodwen McBain
Steph Konstantinidis
Christine Johnson
Melissa Clifford
Lauren Barber
Kirsty Connor
Sophie Crapper

Administration

Jacqui O'Hoy
Ellie McDonald
Linda Masoni
Ollie Filipiak
Bronwyn Synnot
Rachael Dunn
Ashleigh Nelson
Alex Parkes
Domi Udunuwara

Locations

Melbourne

Richmond

North Essendon

Heidelberg Heights

Hoppers Crossing

Boronia

Croydon

February 2015

spanner in hands

Happy New Year! We trust everyone had a safe and relaxing holiday season.

How is your body feeling? Better for the rest, we hope. We know from years of experience, that a break from the normal routine isn't always the cure-all we expect it be.

If you have elbow, wrist or hand pain that has failed to disappear despite a fantastic holiday, we can explain why. More importantly, we can help!

Tendinopathy

Tendinopathy is the medical catch all term to describe many commonly known conditions such as tennis elbow, golfers elbow, DeQuervains and tendinitis. It simply means that the tendon is the problematic (or "pathological") structure causing the pain and weakness.

Tendinopathy is one of the most common causes of pain that we treat in private practice. Recent research has shed a lot of light on why this is the case, and why it has traditionally been difficult to treat successfully.

The new mantra is that "tendons hate change". Tendinopathy typically occurs when we are not doing something right, compressing the tendon or we have done too much too quickly. In the past, repetition was thought to cause the problem. This didn't explain why people such as musicians, who perform the most repetitive work of all, had tendinopathy at far lower rates than the rest of the population.

Tendons respond to the amount of load they are given by strengthening themselves over time, or weakening when load is removed. Every elite athlete, manual worker and musician has probably already discovered this in the course of a career.
Similarly, if your pain doesn't settle down after a brief rest, or period of splinting, you will know that you haven't built that tendon back up to the load bearing capacity you need.

Taking a holiday from load bearing over the festive season can result in an instant return or worsening of symptoms when you get back to work because the tendons have weakened over the break and are able to manage the workload even less than before the break.

Work Site Visits

Hand Injuries, sadly, often occur at work. In fact, 27% of injuries requiring more than a day off work are related to the hand (Dais and Elias 2006).

We see a lot of soft tissue type injuries and also traumatic injuries from accidents that occur in the workplace. We take our role in work injuries very seriously and we keep a very close focus on the whole picture.

Our number one priority is making sure we deliver the very best hand therapy care possible. Oftentimes this can include providing the diagnosis, as well as the treatment and rehabilitation plan.

Another equally important aspect of our care is assisting with the safe and meaningful return to work for the injured worker.
The return to work plan is often best organised following a work site assessment. All of our hand therapists are authorised to perform return to work assessments. This informal process involves one of the hand therapists meeting up at the workplace with the injured worker to appreciate the work to be done on the workers return, and draft a plan and timetable.

We like to reduce any chance of a re-injury, or a failed return to work due to an overly ambitious or inappropriate return to work plan.

The treating hand therapist will always inquire about the work situation, and organise an assessment when appropriate.

Injured workers are also welcome to ask about a work assessment themselves at any stage of the rehabilitation process.

Exercise

water in handsIt's part of the cure

Admittedly, some of our patients have injured themselves playing sport, BUT a majority have not.
Recovery from most musculoskeletal and arthritic conditions is greatly enhanced with exercise.

We now run hydrotherapy classes at three different venues.

We are constantly amazed at the brilliant results our patients get from attending hydrotherapy class.

The pool is absolutely brilliant for the reduction of pain and swelling, mobilising stiff joints, and strengthening the whole shoulder and arm. It is surprising how weak the arm becomes following a surgery or a hand injury. The pool provides the perfect environment to build the arm back up in a supervised situation.

Call 9458 5166 to book into the hydrotherapy groups.

Hydrotherapy is organised directly with your hand therapist as there are safety factors and a health questionnaire related to attendance.

Sincerely,

Karen and the team at Melbourne Hand Rehab

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