We have assembled a list a frequently asked questions below to provide you with answers to questions our physical therapy clients commonly ask. Should you still require more information or if you have a question that you think should be answered here – please use the form at the bottom of thipage. We’d appreciate your feedback.

How To To use the accordian feature below simply click on the question and the answer will be revealed.

General

Answer: Paulseth & Associates Physical Therapy is a 25 year old physical therapist owned private practice with over 100 years of certified staff experience. We have aided world-class, olympic, and professional athletes, as well as, weekend warriors and those with special needs. Our staff is highly experienced and we are well equipped to provide one-on-one care to assist you pre- or post- surgery and injury. With convenient locations in Santa Monica and West Los Angeles accepting most insurance plans, with free parking and full sports club amenities - whatever your needs may be, we at Paulseth & Associates are prepared for you.
Answer: Although it varies as we continue to expand our practice. We currently have 6 full/part time licensed physical therapists in our clinics.
Answer: We accept a wide variety of insurance plans. Please visit our insurance page for a full list of insurances accepted. You may also be covered by your auto insurance provider if you have been in an auto accident. If we are not listed in your insurance company's provider book does not mean we do not accept your insurance. Please call or contact us to find out whether you are eligible for coverage, and if so, what your co-payment and/or deductible will be.
Answer: We have been very successful in returning athletes to pain free activity while continuing to participate in your sport/workout. Of course this depends on the type of injury you have. For instance, distance runners who are experiencing a painful and relatively debilitating lateral knee condition called "illiotibial band syndrome" can be taped in a way that alleviates the pain (the quick fix) so that they can continue their training. Meanwhile we institute an individualized strengthening/stretching regimen, and if necessary fabricate orthotics, which in time corrects the underlying mechanical dysfunction, (the lasting fix) ultimately allowing the runner to train without tape, and without pain, never actually having to stop their training during the recovery. If need be, a physical therapist can help you to effectively modify your exercise program to accommodate a bad back, ankle problem or other malady so that you can achieve the full benefits of exercise with less of the negatives. The use of individualized cross-training during care for the involved area can be extremely beneficial. You will be advised to stop if we feel that you are in imminent danger of further injuring yourself or if healing will not occur otherwise. However, our goal is to return you to, or beyond, your prior level of function/performance as quickly as possible.

Office Visit

Answer: Treatment and evaluation reimbursement can be submitted to your health insurance plan if you have a medical prescription for physical therapy. Discounted cash fees are also available.
Answer: Co-payments are dependent upon your individual health insurance plan and provider. Some providers use a percentage of usual and customary fees (which is discounted from our normal charges), others providers have a fixed copay amount which can vary, and some plans have a co-insurance that pays the co-payment such as medicare and AARP or Blue Cross.
Answer: Yes, we currently take MasterCard and VISA.
Answer: No, currently Paulseth & Associates Physical Therapy and Physio Performance Center does not provide patient/client transportation. We are convenient to public transportation.
Answer: Yes, our West Los Angeles and Santa Monica locations have ample, convenient, FREE parking.n.
Answer: We believe that you should expect to see, and be treated by, a registered physical therapist (PT) each and every visit to the clinic you choose. At our clinic, we never delegate an entire treatment to a physical therapist assistant (PTA) or physical therapist aide, as has become commonplace in many treatment models. Whereas using an assistant (PTA) for this purpose is legal, and is surely cost effective for the clinic, it is certainly not the highest level of care available to you. We have made a stand to continue a treatment model that provides significant, private access to a registered physical therapist with advanced training in orthopedic and sports injuries. This allows you to ask questions, and get thorough explanations and quality hands-on treatment that we believe is the best kind of care available in our profession.

Physical Therapy

Answer: We have found that pre-surgical physical therapy promotes and fosters a more effective and rapid recovery post-operatively. After surgery, physical therapists are experts at expediting healing and return to activity. They can also prevent secondary dysfunction, which is common due to compensatory movements and postures that occur due to pain and swelling. It is also comforting for you to have access to an experienced medical professional to ask your questions and concerns regarding your recovery as they arise.
Answer: Minor aches and pains tend to take care of themselves with rest. But if you have a symptom that recurs more than once, and/or limits you from doing what you enjoy or your daily activities, it's time to see a physical therapist. As the years go by, an accumulation of small "incidents" can create a significant problem For example, a certain manner of walking due to a "fallen arch" may produce back pain, especially if the walking intensifies in time and speed. A physical therapist can help you identify whether the pain, soreness and/or stiffness requires treatment or is something that will run its course shortly.
Answer: A common mistake made when self treating is to treat the symptom, rather than the cause. This can lead to short term benefits, rapid symptom recurrence and the possibility of a chronic pain cycle. Pain is a symptom, not the cause of the problem, therefore knowing where you hurt is not as useful as knowing what is at the source of the problem. Often times the cause of symptoms may be remote from the location of pain, or may be related to postural or movement dysfunctions, commonly known as a "compensation" or "substitution". An analogy of treating the symptom, versus the cause, in the field of gardening is the process of weed abatement. The novice gardener may try to save time by mowing over the weeds for a "quick fix", only to have the weeds return with the next rains. The skilled gardener knows the root (pun intended) of the problem. He/she knows that by eliminating the root, future problems will be far less abundant. A physical therapist is like the experienced gardener. Due to his/her knowledge of the neuro-musculo-skeletal system, and experience treating pathology, a therapist can help you find the cause (or root) of your problem based on factual evidence. Then a plan is made as to the best way to promote healing and prevent secondary dysfunction from occurring. This plan is then made clear to you, therefore ultimately enabling you to self-treat more effectively. The goal of physical therapists, and healthcare practitioners in general, should always be to teach a patient how to treat themselves in the most effective manner. This can then lead to a lasting solution, rather than ongoing dependence on therapy.
Answer: As physical therapists, we first perform an evaluation, incorporating subjective and objective information through interview and physical assessment techniques. We then make an assessment as to the cause of symptoms, and form a treatment plan utilizing our knowledge of biomechanics, tissue healing, exercise physiology, and a detailed anatomical understanding of the neuro-musculo-skeletal system. This plan will often include joint and soft tissue (muscle, fascia, nerve) mobilization and manual movement reeducation techniques, prescribing of therapeutic exercise and utilizing adjunctive modalities such as heat/ice, ultrasound, or electrical stimulation. During the treatment process, we are able to decrease restrictions, weakness, swelling and abnormal movement patterns which lead to, and accompany, pain. We then educate the patient and answer any questions as to the cause of symptoms and suggest self-care ideas with the goal of breaking the cycle of dysfunction to prevent future symptom recurrence. We are also a great intermediary between you and your doctor. As the individuals who spend the most time with you therapeutically, we provide information to your physician that is sometimes hard for you to explain by yourself. We create written reports and interact with your doctor by phone when necessary, communicating detailed information that helps the medical team make the best unified decisions for your health and recovery. We believe that you should also expect to see, and be treated by, a registered physical therapist (PT) each and every visit to the clinic you choose. At our clinic, we never delegate an entire treatment to a physical therapist assistant (PTA) or physical therapist aide, as has become commonplace in many treatment models. Whereas using an assistant (PTA) for this purpose is legal, and is surely cost effective for the clinic, it is certainly not the highest level of care available to you. We have made a stand to continue a treatment model that provides significant, private access to a registered physical therapist with advanced training in orthopedic and sports injuries. This allows you to ask questions, and get thorough explanations and quality hands-on treatment that we believe is the best kind of care available in our profession.
Answer: For those of you who've had the experience of being seen at a clinic where treatment is based completely on exercises and the only things that touched ou were heat-packs, ice-packs, ultrasound and electrical stimulation machines. Or if you've had a massage, but the relief doesn't seem to last then you definitely know what manual therapy isn't. Our commitment to manual therapy begins in the therapists we hire. Each of our therapists has performed well over ten-thousnad treatments and serve as clinical instructors to local physical therapy programs. All of our therapists have advanced graduate degrees in physical therapy and have taken and/or taught many continuing education courses in manual therapy techniques emphasizing the skilled application of hands-on treatment to restore normal movement to joint, muscle and nerve pathologies utilizing the least invasive means. Our primary treatments revolve around manual therapy (hands-on) techniques that are designed to make the lasting changes in your body that exercises alone can't make. Then we instruct you in the activities and postures you can adopt to improve your condition with proper exercise prescription, biomechanics and ergonomics. And finally we consider the adjunctive treatments such as modalities (ultrasound, electrical stimulation, heat, ice) if necessary. Your treatment each session will stem from significant one-on-one time with an experienced manual therapist performing constant evaluation, treatment, and reassessment leading you to the fastest means back to optimal physical function. If you still don't truly understand the difference between non-manual therapy based and manual therapy based clinics, I implore you to give us a chance to show you in person. I assure you, it will become very clear by the end of your first session what makes us so special.

Pain & Symptoms

Answer: Two common issues that are specific to the young patient as regards knee pain are Osgood Schlatter’s Disease (OSD), and Sinding Larsen Johansson Disease (SLJ, aka “jumper’s knee”). OSD occurs when the patellar tendon (attaching the knee cap to the shin bone) pulls on its attachment site of the tibia (shin bone) at the tibial tuberosity (bony bump at the upper shin bone just below the knee cap). Usually this occurs in 10-15 year-olds – soon after a growth spurt – that are involved in running & jumping sports. The young athlete will usually complain of tenderness and swelling at the tibial tuberosity, and pain with running, jumping, kneeling and any direct bumps to the area. Initially, it’s very important to modify the activity level to allow swelling to resolve (ice and anti-inflammatory medication, if recommended by your doctor, are often helpful). As the young athlete is going through the rehab process, leg flexibility & strength deficits and asymmetries should be addressed. Ultimately, this problem resolves as the growth plate at the tibial tuberosity closes as the young athlete’s skeleton matures and pain is no longer an issue (though it’s likely that the enlarged bump at the front of the knee will remain). SLJ occurs when the patellar tendon (attaching the knee cap to the shin bone) pulls on its attachment site at the bottom tip of the patella (knee cap). Usually this occurs in young males – soon after a growth spurt – that are involved in running & jumping sports. The young athlete will usually complain of tenderness and swelling at the bottom tip of the patella, and pain with running, jumping, kneeling, and deep squatting. Initially, it’s very important to modify the activity level to allow swelling to resolve (ice and anti-inflammatory medication, if recommended by your doctor, are often helpful). As the young athlete is going through the rehab process, leg flexibility & strength deficits and asymmetries should be addressed, as well as overall movement pattern assessment to ensure that the mechanics of his/her sport performance aren’t exacerbating the problem. Ultimately, this problem resolves as the growth plate at the bottom tip of the patella closes as the young athlete’s skeleton matures and pain is no longer an issue (though it’s likely that the bump at the lower knee cap will remain). It is important to rule out patellar tendinopathy (irregularity in the tendon attaching the knee cap to the shin bone), knee fat pad irritation, tibial tubercle (bony bump at the upper shin bone just below the knee cap) fracture, and patellofemoral pain syndrome (knee cap area irritation usually due to mechanical deviations in movement and imbalances in muscle strength & flexibility) -Abbigail L Fietzer, PT, DPT
Answer: Pain in the front of the knee can be caused by many things. The most common cause is something we call patello-femoral dysfunctions. This is a problem with the way the knee cap tracks relative to the femur or thigh bone. Poor tracking causes wear and tear on the patella and ultimately pain. Many factors contribute to these dysfunctions including weakness of the quadriceps (muscle in the front of the thigh), tightness along the outside of the thigh and knee, and other dysfunctions in the hips or feet.
Answer: One of the muscles that surfers use a lot is the medial tricep located on the back and inside of the upper arm. The ulnar nerve, which is one of three major nerves in the arms, runs near this muscle. Overuse of the muscle from surfing can cause restrictions around the neve. The body can usually compensate for injury to a nerve in one location. Surfers, however, also hold their necks in a backward bent position while paddling. This position causes decreased space for the nerves in the neck. When a nerve is affected at two different locations along its pathway a phenomenon called “Double Crush” occurs. At this point, the body can no longer compensate and symptoms begin to occur.
Answer: Most back problems are not a result of a single incident. They develop over time from poor posture and bad habit patterns like lifting poorly. All of these behaviors put abnormal stress on the spine causing overstretching of ligaments, micro tearing of discs and overall degenerative changes. Since some structures, for example the discs, have no pain receptors; we can put a lot of stress on them without feeling pain. It is only when a pain causing structure starts to become affected that we feel pain. This is out bodies way of telling us that something is wrong.
Answer: Lateral (outer) elbow pain over or near the bony protuberance is frequently labeled "tennis elbow" and may be diagnosed as lateral epicondylitis. This condition, when associated with tennis may be due to poor backhand technique, improperly strung tennis racket, and/or excessive playing time or frequency. However, this condition may also occur following a blunt traumatic injury to this area of the elbow, improper weight training/lifting technique, or any repetitive over use of the wrist and hand muscles on a daily basis. An example of an overuse type of activity might be the use of a computer at the office for several hours and then again on the computer at home the same day. It is important to note that "tennis elbow" or later epicondylitis, is frequently the cause of lateral elbow pain, but this is not always the case. Thorough examination and differential diagnosing is imperative to rule out other possibilities, e.g., localized entrapment of a nerve at or near the elbow, or referral from nerve entrapment at the neck.

Other

Answer: The best way to get answers about your specific situation is to call our office and schedule an appointment to see a Paulseth & Associates Physical Therapist. Other options would be to contact us using our contact form or quick contact form on our home page. Important**Please remember that in the interest of your privacy - it always best to discuss your case face-to-face with your therapist.

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Contact Paulseth & Associates Physical Therapy

A Paulseth & Associates Physical Therapy Staff Member is ready to assist you with your physical therapy needs. If you need immediate assistance, call us - 310-286-0447