Is Online Shoulder Physio As Good As Face To Face?

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Shoulder pain is common in society, with 7%–27% of the adult population experiencing shoulder pain at any one time. 

Of first episode shoulder pain clients, 50% will continue to have symptoms 18 months later, making shoulder pain the third most common reason for primary care consultation, after back and neck complaints. 

All the more reason to get an accurate and effective shoulder assessment and treatment by an experienced shoulder physiotherapist. 

But can that be achieved online?

As you’d be aware, many Australians and others living around the world have limited access to physiotherapy services due to their geographical remoteness. 

Online Shoulder Physio™️, the provision of shoulder physiotherapy video consultations and treatment programmes via the internet, has huge potential to close the gap and improve access to those living in rural and remote communities. 

One way to establish online shoulder physio’s effectiveness is to establish it’s validity as a service and prove measurements taken during an online shoulder physiotherapy consultation match those of face to face. 

Most would have you believe face to face shoulder consultation are incredibly accurate.  However, some research suggests the inter-rater reliability of face to face examinations of the shoulder to be as low as 48%.

So how good can online shoulder consultations really be?

Well, you might just be surprised…

This study examined the accuracy of face to face shoulder examinations compared to remote shoulder examinations. 

The remote examiner led participants through tests they felt appropriate for their particular presentation, according to their clinical reasoning. As the remote examiners had no physical contact with the participant, the examiners verbally led the participant through the tests, demonstrating on themselves for the participants to copy.

Many of the tests used the participant’s other arm and objects that can be found around your home. 

Online Shoulder Physio teaches you to examine your own shoulder at home
Online Shoulder Physio teaches you how to strength test your shoulder at home

Upon completion of the two physical examinations, participants filled out a satisfaction survey showing the participants were satisfied with the telerehabilitation mode of assessment, with average ratings of 6.8/10.

Using these results, and others (ref) (ref), the use of online shoulder physio remote examinations to diagnose clients with shoulder disorders appears to be both valid, reliable and acceptable to participants.

Yes! Online Shoulder Physio™️ video consultations and remote examination can be just as good if not better than face to face physiotherapy. 

To get started… choose your shoulder health care package now.