Balancing Prevention and Rehabilitation
Oct 29, 2013 12:52PM
● By Dale Bruder
Dr. Noah Abrahams, PT, DPT, is building his physical therapy practice using a two-pronged unique value proposition business model. His activity on the front lines of acute and chronic pain—emergency rooms—provides plenty of opportunity to demonstrate the value of relief at his hands and developing strategic partnerships with personal trainers that want to keep their clients injury-free.
Emergency department physical therapists are a special breed and can be found in 20 of America’s finest hospitals. Abrahams is one of two emergency department doctors of physical therapy in Tucson, and he continues to serve people’s needs at a critical time in their life. Emergency rooms are the default firstresponders for the injured. Manual therapy stabilizes the condition, and then therapeutic exercise is introduced. Rehabilitation includes preventing recurrence.
As an former jock at Indiana University, Abrahams knows how athletes are driven. Ignoring injuries, covering pain symptoms with drugs and returning to activity before completely healing leads to being re-injured. He is sympathetic to the athletic drive, yet advocates balancing the need to heal along with the desire to keep striving. He contends that there is a need for a listening skill in each person’s body that can be directive, advisory or challenging.
Abrahams’ extensive ER experience has taught him ways to first seek to understand, and then to shape the message and address it. Relief comes in the way he applies manipulation, traction or dry-needling techniques to decrease disability, along with advice on nutrition and lifestyle adjustments. “When people come to me already injured, they need rehabilitation. My role includes educating them to prevent the recurrence of the injury,” Abrahams says. “Every condition offers me another opportunity to apply a key passion of identifying new treatment strategies for physical therapists.”
Abrahams chose WellnessFirst for his practice because it provides an interdisciplinary environment of traditional and nontraditional health-providers where expertise is shared amongst the staff. He has a wide range of professional knowledge at hand that combined with his own expertise, allows him to give his patients the best advice possible.
Abrahams is building his depth of knowledge in kinesiology by preparing for the orthopaedic clinical specialist exam. Already a doctor of physical therapy after earning a degree from A.T. Still University’s School of Osteopathic Medicine and continuing study with manual therapy and therapeutic exercise experts here and abroad, he pursues multiple levels of knowledge-based application, saying, “I’m an evidence-based practitioner, spearheading new treatment strategies for physical therapists.”
Fitness and athleticism are primary activities of a wellness-focused lifestyle, and all activity puts stress on the musculoskeletal system. Abrahams’ second unique value proposition is his approach to the supporting people’s active lifestyle. “I’m seeking out fitness trainers to partner with. I want to work with personal trainers and coaches alike who are willing to work alongside a physical therapist to keep the health of their present clients and continue the health maintenance of mine. My approach is a symbiotic relationship. Everyone involved is committed to continued performance development,” says Abrahams. “Our mutual clients can establish a new, higher baseline by including preventive treatment programs in their discipline.”
Abrahams’ applied physical medicine approach is open to the elite athlete that trains heavily, for the individual recovering from an injury and as a concierge approach that can be a combination of a rehab and a wellness program in the comfortable confines of the client’s own home.
A signature program of Abrahams’ practice is Back Pain Boot Camp. “Lower and mid-back pain are common complaints of the contemporary work environments,” he says. “Back Pain Boot Camps are a great strategy to strengthen the body and correct postures in a controlled environment. All my clients are encouraged to attend Back Pain Boot Camps.” The camps focus on correcting common abnormalities and strengthening the posterior chain and the core as a whole.
The two-pronged value proposition strategy provides a circle of influence establishing Abrahams as the go-to physical therapist providing preventive and rehabilitation strategies. His interest in evidence-based research and identifying new physical therapy strategies are a hallmark of his passions. Abrahams provides in-service programs at local hospitals and has numerous medical providers as his clients. Digital networks are also included in his client base, with both an email and blog platform providing a two-way flow of clients’ program managements and educational information.
Abrahams’ ER community service activity and developing partnerships of client sharing are constantly building confidence and continuity, and the subjective approach of service and sharing corresponds to a rising new ethic. Resources and expertise are shared to provide clients the full range of attention and a healthy competition exists, tempered by a client-focused service consensus.
WellnessFirst is located at 3861 N. 1st Ave. Contact Dr. Abrahams at 520-591-1634 or [email protected].
Dale Bruder is a regular contributor.