In the 1952 novel Player Piano, Kurt Vonnegut portrays a futuristic dystopia in which over-automation has made the work of laborers largely obsolete. Early readers would no doubt have marveled at the impossibly intricate and intuitive devices housed in today's rehabilitation labs. Rehab engineering is entering the high-tech age with modern robotics, functional electrical stimulation and virtual reality systems. ADVANCE focuses on the newest advances in rehab engineering--chosen in consultation with our editorial board--that will usher in a new age of caring for patients.
(Photo by Kyle Kielinski)
Providers continue to face myriad challenges. Many health care organizations find themselves either consolidating, merging or forging new partnerships to remain competitive. And almost all providers are evaluating how they can do more with less to survive in a brave new world that is changing daily. This is where technology can help.
Studies have shown that 2.3 to 3.6 of 1,000 children born in the United States have cerebral palsy. These children are susceptible to many illnesses and medical complications that can lead to a shortened life expectancy. Many therapists are aware of the impact of standing programs on range of motion and bone density, but they can also support respiratory health throughout the lifespan.
Pneumatic compression is experiencing a resurgence in popularity as a treatment for lymphedema, both as a means of accelerating the in-clinic treatment phase and for home care. In the past, classically trained lymphedema therapists were cautious about adopting pneumatic compression as a modality. This is despite the fact that pneumatic compression has been shown to be equivalent in efficacy to professionally applied manual lymph drainage.