Physical therapy at Cook Children's
What makes our team special
October is National Physical Therapy Month, a month set aside to recognize physical therapists (PTs) and physical therapist assistants (PTAs) for their roles in health care.
Physical therapy is a vital part of the healthcare picture. It’s also a profession that is commonly misunderstood. Physical therapists and physical therapist assistants are integral components of your child’s healthcare team. But what is a PT or PTA and what makes them special at Cook Children’s?
Physical therapists are highly educated professionals trained to identify problems with movement and function of the human body. The physical therapists at Cook Children’s have either doctorate or master level education. Our physical therapists and physical therapist assistants are constantly advancing their training through continuing education and advanced certifications. We collaborate regularly with your doctors to ensure the highest level and quality of care.
Together, physical therapists and physical therapist assistants work to restore and improve normal body motion. We educate and empower our patients and families to be active participants in their recovery process. We also instruct on future injury prevention. The American Physical Therapy Association’s vision is “transforming society by optimizing movement to improve the human experience.” At Cook Children’s, our physical therapists and physical therapist assistants really do transform lives.
Our physical therapists see children for many different reasons. Some examples might include:
- Complaints of knee pain while running or back pain from sitting too long.
- Shoulder pain from playing a musical instrument.
- A difficult time recovering from surgery.
- Recovering from a broken bone.
- Growing pains after a quick growth spurt.
- Lack of endurance after a long hospital stay.
Physical therapy can help with all of these things and more. Physical therapists look to find what is causing the pain or difficulty. We then guide the recovery process and help restore normal function through the use of manual (hands-on) therapy, stretching, strengthening and neuromuscular re-education.
At Cook Children’s, our SPORTS (Sport Performance Orthopedic Rehab Team Specialists) physical therapists and physical therapist assistants have experience with pediatric specific problems. We recognize that children are unique and not just “small adults.” Kids require specialized care. We take time to perform focused evaluations and customize each child’s treatment. We seek patient and family input in the entire recovery process. We understand the importance of one-on-one time with your child to give them the attention they deserve.
Pain is never normal, and pain from activity should not be ignored. If you think your child may benefit from physical therapy, talk to your doctor or contact our department.
About the author
Melissa Bro, PT, DPT, is a physical therapist for the Cook Children's SPORTS Rehab program. Our physicians, therapists, nurses and technologists work exclusively with kids and understand the unique needs of a growing athlete's bones, muscles, body and mind. As a part of Cook Children's integrated pediatric health care system, our patients have access to a multitude of pediatric specialty areas with board certified doctors, as well as laboratory services, nutritional consultations and sports medicine counseling.
Patients benefit from this integrated system because it allows our staff to use all of the system's resources during treatment. It also improves communication between the various departments whose physicians are focused on caring for children and adolescents.