Baby PT’s Food For Thought 1: EBP, EPAs, Clinical Reasoning

Hello, 2018 internet world! I don’t know if I am harvesting a new category of blogs for myself and if I will even try to keep this going… but on an account of trying to Tweet a thought and knowing I’d never, ever make the character cut-off and I’m not one for doing those split tweets often… this blog post was born. Let’s give this a try. (Also my friends and I do call ourselves “baby PTs” so I’m going to try naming this blog category as such, since I am appropriately very much a “baby PT” with very little real world skills and experience- but I recognize it’s a bit of a misnomer if people think I specialize in pediatrics… anyways…)

One of my courses this block is about electro/therapeutic physiological agents, AKA, modalities. And we have started to receive our assignment questions that get us to reflect and think critically throughout the block.

Question 1 involves asking whether it is surprising to learn that there is such a discrepancy in evidence for the usage of EPAs.

After discussing how I was not very surprised, but still mildly surprised at the lack of strong evidence to indicate the usage of modalities yet the prevalence of EPA implementation can be so high especially in a lot of private MSK clinics (in my experience)… My #foodforthought from my written answer: “I suppose this is why clinical reasoning is a cornerstone of PT. Our toolbox is so vast, and every patient responds differently to us and to our treatment techniques, that even the modalities or interventions with strong evidence for the ‘average’ study population may not work at all for one of our patients… At the end of the day, perhaps there probably must always just be a fine balance between implementing evidence-based practice and patient-centered/-preferred practice…” 

If you have any thoughts to share, I invite you to comment to engage in discussion together!