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From The CriticsReviewer: Christopher James Hughes, PT,PhD,OCS,CSCS(Slippery Rock University)
Description: This book provides an introduction to manual examination and treatment techniques using joint mobilization and neurodynamic principles. The authors have compiled the information from previous teachings within the musculoskeletal component of the physical therapy curriculum at Northwestern University and also from noted authors in orthopedic manual therapy.
Purpose: The purpose, according to the authors, is to "provide the student and practicing physical therapist with clear and consistent techniques to examine active (physiologic) and passive (physiologic and accessory) movement techniques of the upper extremity, lower extremity, pelvis, spine, and temporomandibular joints and of neurodynamic base tests." These objectives represent a critical portion of clinical practice used by a physical therapist. The authors have met their objectives with this book.
Audience: The primary audience includes physical therapy students and practicing physical therapists who see primarily patients with orthopedic injuries in an outpatient setting. However, occupational therapists and athletic trainers may find the information useful in their practice. The authors are both licensed physical therapists and one holds an academic faculty position.
Features: Five chapters and four appendixes enable the authors to cover the principles governing joint mobilization for each major region of the body. Neurodynamic testing and treatment techniques are covered in two separate chapters. The chapters that focus on examination techniques are well-illustrated with each technique describing patient and therapist positions, accompanied by text and symbols overlayed on the photos detailing stabilizing and mobilizing contact points and the direction of force application. The four appendixes provide table information on joint end feels, close and loose packed positions, capsular patterns and a summary of correlations between physiologic indications and accessory motions. References for the neural mobilization techniques are mainly from secondary sources.
Assessment: This book offers the reader an introductory resource on joint mobilization techniques and replicates the work of previous authors. The exclusion of other portions of the clinical examination process make this book more suitable for a class specific to manual therapy techniques or as a supplemental text to a comprehensive clinical exam text that includes postural assessment, gait analysis, patient history techniques etc. I see it as a general reference for the orthopedic physical therapist.