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All India Institute of Medical Sciences, Nagpur

About Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation

About Department


Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation (PM&R), also known as Physiatry, is a medical specialty focused on restoring and improving the functional abilities and quality of life of individuals with physical impairments or disabilities. Physiatrists are medical doctors who specialize in PM&R and work with patients of all ages, from children to the elderly.

The primary goal of PM&R is to address and manage conditions that affect the musculoskeletal, neurological, cardiovascular, and other systems of the body. These conditions may result from various causes, such as accidents, injuries, neurological disorders, chronic illnesses, or degenerative conditions.

Key aspects of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation include:

  1. Comprehensive Evaluation: Physiatrists conduct thorough evaluations of patients, considering their medical history, physical limitations, and functional abilities to create personalized treatment plans.
  2. Non-Surgical Approach: PM&R primarily focuses on non-surgical treatment modalities, such as physical therapy, occupational therapy, speech therapy, and assistive devices. However, physiatrists may collaborate with other medical specialists for more complex cases.
  3. Pain Management: Physiatrists play a crucial role in managing pain resulting from musculoskeletal and neurological conditions. They use various techniques, including medications, injections, and other interventional procedures.
  4. Surgical Approach: Various Neurological and Musculoskeletal conditions are associated with complications which prolongs rehabilitative measures. PM&R specialists assess these complications and manage them surgically. Common surgical procedures include Deformity correction, Tendon transfer, Pressure Injury surgery, Amputation etc.
  5. Physical Therapy: PM&R emphasizes physical therapy as a key component of treatment. Physical therapists work closely with physiatrists to design and implement exercise programs to improve strength, mobility, and functional abilities.
  6. Rehabilitation: The rehabilitation process may involve relearning essential skills like walking, speaking, or performing daily activities for patients recovering from injuries or neurological conditions.
  7. Assistive Devices: Physiatrists may prescribe and coordinate the use of assistive devices such as prosthetics, orthotics, and mobility aids to enhance patients' independence and mobility.
  8. Management of Disabilities: PM&R focuses on managing long-term disabilities and helping patients adapt to their conditions, thereby improving their overall quality of life.
  9. Electrodiagnostic Testing: Physiatrists may perform electrodiagnostic tests like electromyography (EMG) and nerve conduction studies (NCS) to assess nerve and muscle function.

PM&R plays a vital role in the comprehensive care of patients with physical impairments, helping them regain functional independence, manage pain, and improve their overall well-being. This specialty requires a multidisciplinary approach, working closely with other healthcare professionals to provide comprehensive care for patients.