Emily has over 15 years experience within all hospital clinical areas as well as community rehabilitation and management of chronic disease. She has extensive experience (10 years+) as a senior clinician mentoring junior physiotherapists, with seven of those years as a senior physiotherapist with Queensland Health.
Ruth was a 72 year old lady who was referred for Physiotherapy with decline in her function and general deconditioning. She had an ankle fusion surgery 16 months prior to our physiotherapist meeting her and on assessment Ruth complained of daily ankle pain particularly whilst walking and very limited distance due to this. She used a 4 wheeled walker for all mobility and often needed to wear a moon boot to assist with pain. A full general balance, strength, mobility assessment completed as well as assessment of her ankle.
Ruth identified her goals to improve her strength and balance to feel more confident walking indoors and progress her walking distance outdoors with her 4 wheeled walker. She wanted to be able to walk pain free without needing a moon boot for support. Ruth was seen weekly for 8 weeks and in this time an exercise program consisting of balance and strength exercises was drawn up and progressed as appropriate. Mrs X was provided exercises for her ankle to complete daily. She was also started on a walking program to gradually increased her endurance. Ruth’s 4ww was in need of replacing and a new 4ww was prescribed an application made via Medical Aid Subsidy Scheme for a new 4ww to be provided free of charge. A referral was also made to a podiatrist to assess need for orthotics or supportive footwear.
8 weeks after meeting Ruth, she was walking with no moon boot and no pain. She was able to comfortably manage walking one lap of her retirement village ‘block’ (+-500m) with her 4ww as well as confidently walking in town which she had not been able to do for over a year.