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Movement Disorders

The role of rehabilitation services in the treatment of individuals with movement disorders is to assist in improving quality of life throughout the disease process, improve functional movement, instruct the patient and the family in accommodation techniques to maximize functional independence and provide emotional support for the patient and the family.

Tasks that could at one time be accomplished with great ease become major obstacles. Dependence in activities of daily living is one of the primary reasons cited by patients and their caregivers as a reason to seek treatment. This loss of function is also reported to contribute greatly to a perceived decline in quality of life for these individuals.

Our clinicians are members of the University of Florida Center for Movement Disorders. They collaborate openly with all other disciplines of the team to manage the patient’s care. We offer physical and occupational therapy services to specialize in the management of patients with movement disorders, including:

  • Parkinson’s disease
  • Multiple systems atrophy
  • Cortico-basal ganglia degeneration
  • Progressive supranuclear palsy
  • Dystonia
  • Tremors

A thorough examination by our clinicians is performed prior to any intervention. This includes a comprehensive screening as well as a specific testing process to identify impairments to be treated:

  • Strength
  • Range of motion and flexibility
  • Sensory system function
  • Balance and postural control
  • Coordination
  • Functional mobility
  • Gait

Upon evaluation, the therapist will create an individualized treatment regimen to help the patient improve/maintain functional independence and safety. Treatments are centered on specific impairments in an effort to achieve specific goals defined by the roles patients play in their lives.

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