Chronic Pain Subsides:
A Doctor’s Physical Therapy Story
Dartmouth Med School Professor Describes His First PT Experience
by Dr. Duane Compton
Professor of Biochemistry and Cell Biology; Dean, Dartmouth Geisel School of Medicine
My primary care physician referred me to Cioffredi & Associates for treatment of chronic pain and loss of motion and strength in my shoulder joints, and I’m very grateful that she did. This was the first time that I’ve experienced this type of joint problem. Thus, it was my first experience with physical therapy as a treatment program.
Overall, my experience was outstanding and the results are quite impressive. Through a series of expertly guided and progressive stretching and strengthening exercises, I have full mobility in my shoulders and can now move without pain and no longer wake every night due to that pain.
I would recommend Cioffredi & Associates to anyone needing physical therapy for the following reasons.
The staff were all very friendly and courteous. The front desk staff always greeted me cheerfully by name each time I arrived and there was never a long wait time to begin treatment at each appointment.
The facilities are up to date and clean and tidy. They have a large array of apparatus for strength and stretching of any joint/muscle, and were always conscientious to ask me politely if I preferred a private room or would be comfortable in the open gym (my first appointment was in a private room, but subsequently I chose the open gym).
Scheduling my appointments was not difficult and they were accommodating of my schedule. I had one therapist for most of my appointments, but ultimately worked with three different therapists during the course of my appointments. I found all three to be highly skilled and informed about the nature of my condition and the overall strategy needed for recovery. I also found no lapse in the continuity of my treatments from one appointment to the next on the occasions where a different therapist worked with me. The computer notes ensure that each therapist was well informed with where I was in the progression of treatment.
The therapists were all courteous, polite, professional and skilled. I was carefully examined and evaluated at my first visit and informed that it would take approximately 8-10 weeks to resolve the condition. Being a novice at physical therapy treatment, I admit to being incredulous when this assertion was made. In retrospect, I now realize that these therapists are highly trained and can provide well-informed estimates for the time to recovery. I remained a bit skeptical until about four weeks when I started to feel real improvement and the chronic pain began to subside. Having just completed treatments over ten weeks, I have renewed sense of strength and stability in my shoulders and a regained sense of confidence in these joints.
The therapists provided a combination of massage, stretching and strength building to areas of my back and shoulder. They carefully escalated the regime and added different elements each week as my strength improved. They clearly explained how to perform the exercises so that I could continue them at home. Moreover, they were flexible in their approach and were always willing to discuss modifications to exercises if I expressed some sense of discomfort or concern as we tested them out during an appointment. They pushed me to progress in a controlled manner and never extended me beyond my limits.
Overall, I am very satisfied with my treatment experience at Cioffredi & Associates, and I am pleased with my outcome. I would not hesitate to return to them if I ever needed physical therapy treatment again in the future and I would not hesitate to recommend them to someone else in need of physical therapy.