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Physiotherapy & Rehabilitation

Upper Extremity Injuries

Upper Extremity Injuries

Injuries to the upper extremity can be very debilitating. The loss of use of a dominant limb can prevent individuals from participating in activities of daily living (dressing, toileting, feeding ones self and/or children), as well as functional activities (sports, socialization, etc.). Timely management of upper extremity injuries can prevent post traumatic arthritis, reduce scar tissue and prevent adhesion as well as limit surgical possibility and prevent secondary imbalances or compensation strategies secondary to injury sequelae of potential compensation secondary to injury.

Certified Hand Therapists  are uniquely qualified to treat upper extremity injuries.

What are the Signs and Symptoms?

  • Pain anywhere from fingertip to shoulder
  • Loss of range of motion of the fingers, hands, wrist, elbow or shoulder girdle include upper thoracic region
  • Numbness
  • Color changes (purple or white fingertips in the cold)
  • Loss of grip strength
  • Inability to tolerate weight bearing through wrist/hand (i.e., cannot push self up from the floor)
  • Loss of dexterity, dropping items, loss of coordination
  • Crooked digits
  • Reduced sensation in fingers
  • Redness or swelling to limb / digits

How Can Donna Sarna Physiotherapy Help?

At Donna Sarna Physiotherapy & Rehabilitation an assessment is performed evaluating posture, range of motion and strength of the upper extremity, shoulder girdle, and neck musculature. Peripheral nerves and ligaments of the upper extremity will also be evaluated.

An individualized treatment plan will be developed based on assessment findings.   Treatment from our experienced physiotherapists can help decrease pain, swelling, muscle spasm and tightness.  It can also improve mobility, stability, function, posture, and prevent re-occurrence. Hand therapy treatment may include education, especially involving posture, myofascial release, craniosacral therapy, joint mobilization techniques, modalities (e.g. heat, ice, ultrasound, TENS), acupuncture, and strength and stability exercises.  Splinting/bracing will be discussed during assessment and prescribed as needed.  Assessment findings are shared with the client and a comprehensive care plan is created.  Appointment times generally range from 45 minutes to 1 hour.