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  • Northeast Wisconsin
  • November 2018
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Joe finds pain relief and education in physical therapy

I recently had a kidney stone. It was painful and stubborn, and I eventually had to have surgery. I thought that would be the end of it, but it resulted in a numbness in my right thigh. After about a month thinking that it would just eventually dissipate, I took action and finally made an appointment with a professional.

I decided to see a physical therapist because that seemed like the most logical expert to help in working with my body’s range of motion to get everything back to normal. I made an appointment with Steve Barnett at Orthopedic & Spine Therapy. It was easy and I was able to schedule a time within a day of calling.

Because I live nearby, I chose their Menasha location, but they have 17 other offices all around the state. It was pleasant, clean and very spacious. I didn’t have to wait at all and the receptionist was friendly — all positives in my book.

To begin the appointment, Steve asked me a lot of questions that made me feel like he was really interested in doing a thorough job. He spent a lot of time talking to me and I didn’t feel rushed at any point. It was nice to feel that I had his attention.

The numbness I experienced was from my knee to my hip so I thought that’s where he would probably focus most of his attention. I was wrong. Steve checked my back, my alignment, shoulders and leg flexibility. He explained that he and all the physical therapists at Orthopedic & Spine Therapy look at the whole person to determine where the problem is coming from instead of where it happens to show up.

It was a very hands-on visit and Steve explained that it’s something they all do purposefully. They don’t use a lot of machines and prefer hands-on methods to evaluate and treat patients. During my visit, we worked on exercises and stretches to help get the range of motion back in my knee, back and hamstring. Steve reminded me that as we get older we may lose motion and the ability to balance, so it was nice to be taught exercises to use in the future too.

I’ve seen therapists in the past that have told me to do exercises. But Steve not only spent time doing the exercises with me he also asked for my cell phone and took photos of the four different poses of what to do to help my leg, balance and flexibility so I knew what I looked like doing them properly. That way, it would be easy to recreate at home, and my wife could help me do them successfully.

I also learned a lot. Steve explained everything that we worked on and stressed that the old sporting cliché, “No pain, no gain” is false for physical therapy. He said that you get your range of motion back by moving to your current limit, holding the stretch and doing it a few times. But don’t overexert or overstretch to the point you have pain. Consistency is much more important than overexertion.

Nothing was painful during my visit. I was amazed that while Steve was helping me stretch, he knew exactly where to stop the stretch because he recognized the muscle wasn’t going to give anymore.

I met with Steve about two weeks ago. Since visiting and doing the exercises twice to three times a day at home, my numbness has subsided. That by itself is great but I also love the fact that Orthopedic & Spine Therapy is locally-owned and privately held. I prefer to support local businesses, and they work with both patients who need referrals and those who don’t.

They also have the staff and education to help with insurance and work with different providers to make physical therapy affordable. For all these reasons, I’d definitely recommend visiting Orthopedic & Spine Therapy. 

Orthopedic & Spine Therapy

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