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Today (8 September) we are celebrating World Physical Therapy (PT) Day.

The day marks the unity and solidarity of the physiotherapy community around the world. It is an opportunity to recognise the work that physiotherapists do for their patients and community.

The theme for World PT Day this year is osteoarthritis (OA) – highlighting what the condition is, the prevalence of OA and the important role physiotherapy  plays in the treatment of the condition.

Did you know?

  • Osteoarthritis is a condition that causes joints to become painful and stiff. Osteoarthritis is the most common joint condition: 520 million people around the world have OA, and 60% of OA cases are for knee OA.
  • In a global study of 291 conditions, hip and knee OA was ranked as the 11th highest contributor to disability.
  • OA is a leading cause of disability. 9.6 million years were lived with disability from OA around the world in 2017.
  • The exact cause of OA is unclear. Risk factors that increase the risk of OA include: having overweight or obesity, having a previous joint injury or joint surgery or history of joint overuse, genetics

Here at MTW we have a team of over 110 physiotherapists working in Therapies, supporting our patients across the Trust.

How does physiotherapy help treat osteoarthritis?

Exercise is a first-line treatment for OA. A physiotherapist can provide advice and education about pain relief and ways to manage OA. They can teach people living with OA how to improve joint movement and strengthen muscles.

It is important for people living with OA to keep as active as possible. This can help improve pain, reduce other symptoms of OA, and help people stay independent.

This is a useful guide to exercising with osteoarthritis.

You can find out more about the important role of physiotherapy by reading about the experience of  Tom Reynolds, our Clinical Lead Orthopaedic Physiotherapist at Tunbridge Wells Hospital.

*In 1996, 8 September was designated as World PT Day – the date World Physiotherapy was founded in 1951