Hand Therapy

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Welcome to the Linden Oaks Physical Therapy Hand Program

Hand therapy is the art and science of rehabilitation of the upper limb, which includes the hand, wrist, elbow, and shoulder girdle. It is a merging of occupational and physical therapy theory and practice that combines comprehensive knowledge of the structure of the upper limb with function and activity. Using specialized skills in assessment, planning, and treatment, hand therapists provide therapeutic interventions to prevent dysfunction, restore function and/or reverse the progression of pathology of the upper limb in order to enhance an individual’s ability to execute tasks and to participate fully in life situations.

Theoretical knowledge and technical skills are applied, using good clinical judgment in assessment and treatment of individuals with diagnoses related to the upper limb

(hand, wrist, elbow, shoulder girdle).

These may include but are not limited to:

  • Adhesions or tightness (e.g., musculotendinis, capsular)
  • Amputations
  • Arthritis and rheumatic diseases (Basal Joint)
  • Carpal Tunnel
  • Crush injuries/mutilating trauma
  • Cysts and tumors
  • Dislocations and subluxations
  • Dupuytren’s disease
  • Edema
  • Fractures
  • Infections
  • Ligamentous injury and instability
  • Muscular strains, tears, and avulsions
  • Nerve injuries and conditions (e.g., neuropathies, palsies, nerve repairs)
  • Pain (e.g. complex regional pain syndrome, fibromyalgia)
  • Replantation and revascularization
  • Tendon injuries and conditions (e.g., lacerations, transfers, tendonitis, ruptures)
  • Trigger Fingers
  • Wounds and scars

A variety of techniques and tools may be used in therapeutic intervention with hand and upper quarter patients, including but not limited to:

  • Assessment techniques
  • Adaptive, assistive and ADL devices 
  • Desensitization
  • Edema Management 
  • Therapeutic Exercise
  • Functional activity
  • Joint protection 
  • Manual therapy techniques
  • Modalities
  • Neuromuscular re-education
  • Orthotic design, selection, fitting, fabrication and training:
  • Patient family and/or caregiver education
  • Scar Management
  • Sensory re-education
  • Splinting
  • Work conditioning/hardening
  • Wound care (debridement, suture and staple removal, topical and dressing management, modalities)




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