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Physical therapy, also called PT, is commonly recommended for people recovering from injuries. In this article, we’ll define physical therapy and explain the role it plays in personal injury cases.

Key Takeaways

  • Physical therapy is a healthcare field where professionals evaluate, assess, and treat individuals with physical limitations related to injuries and disabilities
  • Physical therapy can be used for a number of purposes related to helping individuals live their day-to-day lives
  • If you are in physical therapy for an injury that you are filing a personal injury claim for, you can include costs related to your PT in the damages you are seeking

What is Physical Therapy?

Physical therapy is a healthcare discipline that involves work that helps individuals develop, maintain, and restore maximum physical function and movement capacity. Its ultimate goal is to improve the patient’s quality of life. PT may be used to help individuals recover from injuries, relieve pain, deal with chronic conditions and disabilities, and help prevent future injuries. It is commonly recommended by doctors for patients who have difficulty completing the tasks of their day-to-day life due to an injury or health condition.

People of all ages with a variety of issues can benefit from physical therapy. Some examples of situations in which a person may be referred to physical therapy include:

  • Learning to use a walker or cane
  • Adapting to an artificial limb
  • Working on balance to prevent slips and falls
  • Rehabilitation after an accident, injury, or surgery
  • Recovery from a sports injury 
  • Improving movement and mobility
  • Managing a chronic disease like arthritis
  • Recovering after giving birth

Physical Therapy in Personal Injury Law

If you have been injured, it is common to require physical therapy to help you be able to get back to full function in your day-to-day activities. The cost of physical therapy is one of the things that you can seek compensation for as part of a personal injury insurance claim. For insurance purposes, physical therapy is considered to be in the same category as doctor’s appointments, emergency room visits, and surgeries.

For example, let’s say you slipped and fell at a grocery store that failed to properly mark a wet spot on their floor. As a result, you ruptured a disc in your spine and your doctor suggested you go to physical therapy to help you heal the injury. If you decide to file a personal injury claim against the grocery store, you will be able to include the cost of your physical therapy appointments as part of your damages.

If you’re planning to make a claim for the money you spent on physical therapy, it’s important to keep all documentation related to it. This includes:

  • Your doctor’s initial recommendation for a physical therapist
  • Receipts for physical therapy payments 
  • Invoices from your physical therapist’s office
  • Your schedule of physical therapy appointments
  • Mileage to and from your physical therapist’s office
  • Records of time taken away from work for physical therapy

It is highly recommended to work with an experienced personal injury lawyer who can help represent your interest in receiving compensation for all costs incurred from your injury, including physical therapy.

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