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With the seventh edition of Physical Rehabilitation, we continue a tradition of striving for excellence that began more than 35 years ago. We are gratified by the continuing wide acceptance of Physical Rehabilitation by faculty, students, and clinicians.

The text is designed to provide a comprehensive approach to the rehabilitation management of adult patients. As such, it is intended to serve as a primary textbook for professional-level physical therapy students and as an important resource for practicing therapists as well as for other rehabilitation professionals. The seventh edition recognizes the continuing evolution of the profession and integrates basic and applied research to guide and inform evidence-based practice. It also integrates principles of patient/client management (examination, evaluation, diagnosis, prognosis, intervention, and outcomes) presented in the American Physical Therapy Association’s Guide to Physical Therapist Practice and terminology from the World Health Organization’s International Classification of Functioning, Disability, and Health (ICF).

Physical Rehabilitation is organized into three sections. Section One (Chapters 1–9) includes chapters on clinical decision making and examination of basic systems as well as examination of function and the environment. Section Two (Chapters 10–29) addresses many of the diseases, disorders, and health conditions commonly seen in the rehabilitation setting. Appropriate examination and intervention strategies are discussed for related body structure/function impairments, activity limitations, and participation restrictions in societal interactions. Health promotion and wellness strategies are also considered. Emphasis is placed on parameters of learning critical to ensuring the patient/client can achieve identified goals and expected outcomes. The final section, Section Three (Chapters 30–32), includes orthotics, prosthetics, and seating and wheeled mobility.

A central element of the text is a strong pedagogical format designed to facilitate and reinforce the learning of key concepts. Each chapter of Physical Rehabilitation includes an initial content outline, learning objectives, an introduction and summary, questions for review (self-assessment), and extensive references. Web-based resources for clinicians and patients/families are also provided. Application of important concepts is promoted through end-of-chapter case studies, which include guiding questions designed to enhance clinical decision-making skills. Many health condition–focused chapters contain Tables of Outcome Measures emphasizing tests and measures commonly used in clinical practice, and tables that summarize and critically appraise research relevant to the chapter content. Our hope is that these tables may provide a model for readers to continue to critically examine clinical practice using high-quality research findings. We also hope it will inspire enthusiasm about the importance of continuous, lifelong, self-directed learning.

The visuals have been enhanced with the addition of new illustrations and photographs. Design changes and a full-color format provide a reader-friendly environment and augment understanding of content. Valuable resources for the seventh edition include 14 online case studies with accompanying video segments illustrating aspects of the initial examination, interventions, and outcomes for patients undergoing active rehabilitation. The cases were authored by practicing therapists from various parts of the country who were directly involved in the care of the case study patient participant. The knowledge and clinical skills of these dedicated case study contributors are well represented in the online materials. The case studies include patients with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease and respiratory distress syndrome, burns, amputation, spinal cord injury, Parkinson’s disease, traumatic brain injury, stroke, vestibular dysfunction, and multiple sclerosis. Questions are posed that address key elements in developing the plan of care for each patient. All case study materials (patient history, examination data, video segments, answers to guiding questions for student feedback) are available online at DavisPlus. Suggested answers to the end-of-chapter case study Guiding Questions and Questions for Review (self-assessment) are also available online.

Online resources also include sample examination questions consistent with the format of the National Physical Therapy Examination. In separate files, also available at DavisPlus, answers to the questions are provided for student feedback.

As we have gratefully noted with previous editions, our greatest asset and inspiration in preparing the seventh edition of Physical Rehabilitation has been an extraordinary group of contributing authors. We are most fortunate to have this group of talented individuals whose breadth and scope of professional knowledge and experience seems unparalleled. These individuals are recognized experts from a variety of specialty areas who have graciously shared their knowledge and clinical practice expertise by providing relevant, up-to-date, and practical information within their respective content areas.

The seventh edition has also benefited from the input of numerous individuals engaged in both academic and clinical practice settings who have used and reviewed the content. We are grateful for their constructive feedback and have instituted many of their suggestions and changes. As always, we welcome suggestions for improvements from our colleagues and students.

As physical therapists continue to take on more and greater professional responsibilities and challenges, the very nature of this text makes it a perpetual “work in progress.” We are grateful for the opportunity to contribute to the academic literature in physical therapy, as well as to the professional development of those preparing to enter a career devoted to improving the quality of life of those we serve.

We acknowledge the very important contributions that physical therapists make in the lives of their patients. This book is dedicated to those therapists—past, present, and future—who guide and challenge their patients to lead a successful and independent life and who work toward building a community to improve the health of society.


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