Celebrating 26 Years of Excellence!  

   McDonald Physical Therapy News 


    June 2015 


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 Contact us at (574)233-5754

Fran's Favorite Quotes


"To teach is to touch a life forever." 




The MPT Team is excited to support the following events this Summer- come out and join us!


Alzheimer & Dementia Walk



Hannah & Friends 5K Run/Walk



Running Wild 5K



(Click on links for 

more info)    



Do you have pain in your back, neck, shoulder, knee or arm? Do you have pain when you exercise, garden or when going about your normal routine?
If so, now you can call us directly and get immediate relief as you no longer have to see your physician first. 
We want you back in the game TODAY! Call us for an evaluation at 574-233-5754




The new MPT site offers quick and easy access to essential information for our patients,regarding their first visit, necessary forms
and FAQ's.

The website is also a great resource to 
learn more about our services, facilities and staff. 


Dear Friends,


As I write my letter this month my thoughts turn to my Mom who will be celebrating her 88th birthday in less than a month. Though still sharp as a tack her most challenging physical limitation has been her macular degeneration. This one limitation was the catalyst of a tremendous casualty in my mom's life.

On a winter morning in 2014, my mom went to her basement to get up on a step stool to put things away in the crawl space. She fell and broke her hip in 5 places. At that time she didn't have a first alert device and lay on the basement floor for most of the day. Luckily, my sister came from work and found her, called the ambulance and got her to the hospital, where she underwent surgery to secure the multi fractured hip.

I come from a large family of 10, with 2 brothers and 7 sisters and am the only physical therapist of the group. I naturally wanted the X-rays before the surgery and after, as my concern was enormous. After reviewing them myself I gave them to one of the best total hip surgeons in our area. As I waited for his thoughts, my mom was put in a rehabilitation facility and was being asked to walk without any limitations. She was told to push through the pain. The local surgeon I had asked to review the X-rays informed me that she should not be putting weight on the surgical hip and to do so was extremely risky. He informed me that her hip surgery may give out and she could end up in a wheelchair for the rest of her life.

When I received this news from my friend the orthopedic specialist, I flew to get my mom and brought her from New York to South Bend. The flight was a bit of a challenge, but well worth it. I got her in to see Steve Mitros, MD, who educated her on the importance of using a walker and not putting any weight on the surgical leg for at least 3 months. He also showed her, on the X-Ray, how fragile her repair was because the bones had not had time to heal.

Long story short, we kept my mom for approximately 4 months, helped her regain her motion, strength and function.  Her entire process, getting back to normal strength and walking up and down stairs, took about 1 year. I am so thankful she listened and was open to visiting our clinic to be tested for her strength, balance and walking capability throughout that year.

I share this story with you all; to hopefully help you realize that you need to find out as much information possible about your physical therapy program following your surgery. The surgery is extremely important. The surgeon you choose is extremely important and your physical therapy treatment program is just as important! People forget or don't even realize until after their surgery that they will need to be going to physical therapy and working harder than they have ever imagined!  The key to my mom's, your mom's, your children's, your spouse's, or your friend's ability to live a more normal life will be greatly determined by the physical therapy group they choose! This is not to be taken lightly! 

With this in mind, please take the time to call each physical therapy clinic and find one that fits your needs. Call to find out if you can call them at any time if you need them. Please find out the kind of patients they generally see, how long they have been in business and the hours they are open and how soon you will be seen by a physical therapist. Find out how long you will wait in their waiting room as your time is precious. If they can't answer these questions maybe you need to find a physical therapy group that will answer you to your satisfaction. Each patient is a valued individual as well as a customer who should be treated exceptionally well, especially because they are being seen at a physically and emotionally compromised time in their life.

I realize this is a different perspective to hear. All health care providers need to begin realizing that they are in a service industry and need to begin showing compassion through being more concerned and taking care of each person with the attentiveness of our own family and friends.

As you can imagine, I firmly believe, that if you live locally, McDonald Physical Therapy is just that place for YOU! If you are living in other parts of the country I wish you much luck in your quest and I am only a phone call away if you have any questions as YOU deserve the best care and service available!





Physical Therapist's Guide to Osteoarthritis 


"Arthritis" is a term used to describe inflammation of the joints. Osteoarthritis (OA) is the most common form of arthritis and usually is caused by the deterioration of a joint. Typically, the weight-bearing joints are affected, with the knee and the hip being the most common 


Physical therapists can help patients understand OA and its complications, and provide treatments to lessen pain and improve movement. Additionally, physical therapists can provide information about healthy lifestyle choices and obesity education. This is important because some research shows that weight loss can reduce the chance of getting OA. One study showed that an 11-pound weight loss reduced the risk of OA in women


What is Osteoarthritis?

Your bones are connected at joints such as the hip and knee. A rubbery substance called cartilage coats the bones at these joints and helps reduce friction when you move. A protective oily substance called synovial fluid is also contained within the joint, helping to ease movement. When these protective coverings break down, the bones begin to rub together during movement. This can cause pain, and the process itself can lead to more damage in the remaining cartilage and the bones themselves.


The cause of OA is unknown. Current research points to aging as the main cause. Factors that may increase your risk for OA include:

  • Age. Growing older increases your risk for developing OA because of the amount of time you've used your joints.
  • Genetics. Research indicates that some people's bodies have difficulty forming cartilage. Individuals can pass this problem on to their children.
  • Past Injury. Individuals with prior injury to a specific joint, especially a weight-bearing joint (such as the hip or knee), are at increased risk for developing OA.
  • Occupation. Jobs that require repetitive squatting, bending, and twisting are risk factors for OA. People who perform jobs that require prolonged kneeling (miners, flooring specialists) are at high risk for developing OA.
  • Sports. Athletes who repeatedly use a specific joint in extreme ways (pitchers, football linemen, ballet dancers) may increase their risk for developing OA later in life.
  • Obesity. Being overweight causes increased stress to the weight-bearing joints (such as knees), increasing the risk for development of OA.

How Does it Feel?

Typically, OA causes pain and stiffness in the joint. Common symptoms include:

  • Stiffness in the joint, especially in the morning, which eases in less than 30 minutes
  • Stiffness in the joint after sitting or lying down for long periods
  • Pain during activity that is relieved by rest
  • Cracking, creaking, crunching, or other types of joint noise
  • Pain when you press on the joint
  • Increased bone growth around the joint that you may be able to feel

Caution: Swelling and warmth around the joint is not usually seen with OA and may indicate a different condition or signs of an inflammation. Please consult with your doctor if you have swelling, redness, and warmth in the joint.


 How Can a Physical Therapist Help?

Your physical therapist can effectively treat OA. Depending on how severe the OA is, physical therapy may help you avoid surgery. Although the symptoms and progression of OA are different for each person, starting an individualized exercise program and addressing risk factors can help relieve your symptoms and slow the condition's advance. Here are a few ways your physical therapist can help:

  • Your therapist will do a thorough examination to determine your symptoms and what activities are difficult for you. He or she will design an exercise program to address those activities and improve your movement.
  • Your therapist may use manual (hands-on) therapy to improve movement of the affected joint.
  • Your physical therapist may offer suggestions for adjusting your work area to lessen the strain on your joints.
  • Your physical therapist can teach you an aerobic exercise program to improve your movement and overall health, and offer instructions for continuing the program at home.
  • If you are overweight, your physical therapist can teach you an exercise program for safe weight loss, and recommend simple lifestyle changes that will help keep the weight off.

In cases of severe OA that are not helped by physical therapy alone, surgery, such as a knee or hip replacement, may be necessary. Your physical therapist will refer you to an orthopedic surgeon to discuss the possibility of surgery.


Call MPT today if you are experiencing any of these symptoms or have questions- 574-233-5754.


*article from www.moveforwardpt.com