Why are injury assessments are so important?

There are a number of reasons for performing an initial injury assessment, these can include:-

  • Medical Screening, this helps us decide whether we can treat you or if you will need referral to other medical professions (x-ray, surgery)
  • Which structures are involved. When possible, we determine the possible cause of the problem/complaint. In some cases, this involves determining the anatomical structure that is causing pain. In some cases, this is not possible, but determining all the possible contributing factors to the pain is important. Knowing which structures are involved and how they were injured can guide you on how long the injury will take to recover.
  • Causes: We determine the factors that led to the injury and/or complaint. The above step and finding the cause is critical in determining the appropriate treatment plan and preventing it happening again.

The assessment may include both structural and functional testing. We will look at your movements, combined with the therapists manual testing of specific structures. For acute, traumatic injuries the assessment has a strong structural approach. For chronic and/or gradual onset injuries, the assessment has a strong functional approach.

To analyse all the relevant information can be complex (client history, signs and symptoms, aggravating factors, client goals, past medical history, clinical assessment/examination findings, diagnostic imaging, etc).  It will all help towards finding an appropriate treatment, which is why clinical expertise is important.

We have a very patient centred approach which means we take into account what is important to you, what activities you want to get back to and we plan treatment to focus on these goals.

At the end of the assessment, the following information will be identified:
  • The patient goals
  • A problem list (pain, difficulty with activities, etc) and treatment plan to overcome these.
  • A clinical diagnosis as well as possible differential diagnoses.

Our aim is to send you home better understanding your injury and how you can recover. We will set a simple home treatment plan directed towards your goals. This may include up to 5 exercises which we will dicuss how best to put into your routine.

Assessing your injury is important to find out which structure/s have been injured or the majority of the time irritated. This will guide you on what movements to stay away from, just while it recovers and what treatments/exercises can be started straight away and how to progress towards your goals. Complete rest is rarely advised. We will always try to keep your sports training going/keep you in work, we may just need to modify things during recovery.