Joint protection program for the neck
- Maureen R Gecht-Silver, OTD, MPH, OTR/L
Maureen R Gecht-Silver, OTD, MPH, OTR/L
- Assistant Professor of Clinical Family Medicine
- Clinical Assistant Professor of Occupational Therapy
- University of Illinois at Chicago
- Alison M Duncombe, PT, DPT, OCS, FAAOMPT
Alison M Duncombe, PT, DPT, OCS, FAAOMPT
- Outpatient Supervisor
- University of Illinois Medical Center at Chicago
The management of neck pain includes active treatment, rehabilitation, and joint protection. A joint protection program for the neck is indicated for patients with a rheumatologic disorder involving the neck to help prevent recurrent sprains and strains that add to inflammation and degeneration . In addition, it is fundamental in preventive joint care.
The principles and guidelines for joint protection programs for the neck will be reviewed here. An overview of joint protection and the evaluation and treatment of neck pain are discussed separately. (See "Overview of joint protection" and "Evaluation of the patient with neck pain and cervical spine disorders" and "Treatment of neck pain".)
PRINCIPLES OF JOINT PROTECTION
The following principles are the foundation of patient education in joint protection and are applicable to joint protection for the neck:
●Distribute the load over stronger joints and/or larger surface areas
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