Initial evaluation in Hand Therapy may include range of motion (ROM), and strength testing, as well as screening for functional problems, in activities of daily living as well as in hobbies and at work. In conjunction with the hand surgeons’ evaluation and referral, conservative treatment may be initiated, or treatment may be aimed at maximizing gains from a surgical procedure.
Basic care starts with wound care, edema and pain control. It includes range of motion exercises (ROM), joint mobilization and scar control. Most exercises are done one-on-one with the Hand Therapists and their assistants. Many of the exercises are meant to be done by the patient at home. The home program is critical to any progress, and patients are given detailed instructions as to which exercises they must do at home, and how often. Judicious use of modalities in Hand Therapy helps attain specific goals.