In everyday social interactions when meeting someone for the first time, it isn’t uncommon to ask what they do for a living. When I tell them I’m a physiotherapist, a lot of the time they tell me about some ache or pain that they have had whether it is recent or chronic. Their description is also usually followed by the same question: “What is wrong with me?”
Giving us a little bit of information can help us figure out what the cause of pain is, but a lot of the time the general public is not completely aware that it isn’t that simple! To give you a more correct and professional diagnosis, we need to do thorough testing. This involves additional questioning, physical assessments as well as your response to treatments. Further investigations such as X-rays or MRI scans may also be required.
Don’t get me wrong though, I am not saying I don’t like people asking me to help them out with their injuries. The human body is an intricate network which makes it quite fascinating to understand, assess and treat (fascinating to me at least). At the same time, it is the complexity of it that forces us to need a thorough examination to cater to that bothering ache.
Pain in the forearm may well be due to an injury to a joint in the elbow or muscle in the forearm. Yet that same injury can also cause an ache or swelling in the wrist and fingers. Pain in the knee could be due to either a local structure or referred source. However there may have been other precipitating factors to that local structure up or down the leg. In other words, dysfunction in the hip or ankle may have led to the now aching knee. The possibilities are vast and numerous.
In saying this, still don’t hesitate to ask us about an injury you may have.
Just be mindful of how physiotherapy works and give us more time than just a few minutes to assist you with all that we know.