When we start a rehab program with a new patient, the people often ask me what to expect.
I've also written any number of blogs talking about rehab, without a lot of reference to what we do specifically.
This will give you some idea.
Most rehab visits have three basic parts: floor exercises, underwater treadmill, and laser.
There are certainly variations, depending on a particular individual's needs (massage, joint capsule manipulation, electric stim, and others), but these are the most common components.
Almost everyone has some time doing floor exercises.
Some of the exercises are more passive, like the one Abbey is doing here.
Some are more active, where the dog is doing more of the work on their own (with direction, encouragement and treats, of course).
These exercises follow a particular pattern to keep the recovery moving forward.
A lot of this work is based on sound and well studied neurological principles.
(Unbelievably, I used the word "neuroplasticity" with a client recently. Good word. Bad communication.)
This is where a lot of stability is built and then strength is reestablished.
Most of the rehab patients also find time working in the underwater treadmill.
We have had amazingly few individuals (one or two) that we could not get to work in the treadmill.
This is a terrific tool that can be used in a wide variety of ways.
It will help us direct the early part of healing while taking weight off of the joints.
Later in the process, we can alter water depth, incline and turn on the jets to really do some hard work.
One advantage of the underwater treadmill is that we can set it up to accomplish work at three to four times faster than working on a land treadmill!
We have a Class IV laser from Companion Laser.
We've been using this laser at KVet for over 6 years now, and we've had great success on a wide variety of conditions.
The Class IV laser is well studied, and allows us to penetrate much deeper into the body than any other class.
Fundamentally, the laser speeds the healing process, decreases pain, and helps the healed tissue be stronger and more resilient than it would have been without the laser.
Each individual's treatment plan is reviewed and updated by me (Dr. Halden) based on a re-examination every four visits.
Using these tools and our experience, we are constantly working to keep the treatments tailored to the current needs of each patient.