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2012 Annual Conference

October 25–28, 2012

Henry B. Gonzalez Convention Center, San Antonio, TX

2012 TPTA Poster Abstracts

CARDIOVASCULAR SCREENING IN OUTPATIENT PHYSICAL THERAPY PRACTICE

Saturday, October 27, 2012 at 1:00 PM–2:00 PM Central Time (US & Canada)
Bulletin Board 2A
Presenter's Name - Last Name First

Ross, Michael

Presenter's Affiliation, City, State

U.S. Army-Baylor University Doctoral Program in Physical Therapy, Fort Sam Houston, TX

Purpose

The presence of cardiovascular disease can influence exercise prescription in physical therapist practice. Therefore, it is recommended that physical therapists screen for cardiovascular risk factors prior to prescribing aerobic exercise or other physical activity. By identifying the level of cardiovascular risk for each patient, the physical therapist can determine whether medical clearance or additional consultation is necessary. However, scant evidence is available that describes the prevalence of cardiovascular risk factors among individuals seeking physical therapist services. The purpose of this study was to assess the prevalence of cardiovascular risk factors in individuals seeking physical therapist services.

Subjects

This study included 273 consecutive patients (M = 180, F = 93, age = 43.5±15.6, body mass index = 27.9±4.8) referred to a physical therapist for the treatment of a neuromusculoskeletal disorder.

Methods

Each patient was screened upon initial evaluation by a physical therapist for cardiovascular risk according to the American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM) guidelines. Patients were then stratified as having a low, moderate, or high risk of experiencing a future cardiovascular event.

Results

A history of cardiovascular disease was reported in 16.5% of patients, with 8.4% of patients having current signs and symptoms of cardiovascular disease. Additionally, 22% of patients had a family history of cardiovascular disease, 27.5% of patients were considered obese, 12.5% of patients were current smokers, and 24.9% of patients had a sedentary lifestyle. Dyslipidemia and elevated glucose were previously diagnosed in 22.3% and 6.2% of patients, respectively, and 26.4% of patients were taking antihypertensive medications or had blood pressure measures over 140/90 mmHg. According to the ACSM guidelines, 47.6% of patients were stratified as low risk, 34.4% were moderate risk, and 18.0% were high risk for experiencing a future cardiovascular event.

Conclusion(s)

According to ACSM guidelines, the majority of patients in this study (52.4%) were stratified as either moderate or high risk for experiencing a future cardiovascular event and would potentially require medical clearance before aerobic exercise or physical activity are added as a physical therapy intervention.

Clinical Relevance

It is important that physical therapists are familiar with and implement appropriate methods to identify cardiovascular risk in their patients, as these findings could potentially influence choice of interventions and treatment outcomes.

Authors

Michael Ross, U.S. Army-Baylor University Doctoral Program in Physical Therapy
Carrie Hoppes, U.S. Army-Baylor University Doctoral Program in Physical Therapy
Bryan Fillmore, U.S. Army-Baylor University Doctoral Program in Physical Therapy
Maureen Greenlee, U.S. Army-Baylor University Doctoral Program in Physical Therapy
Sarah Hill, U.S. Army-Baylor University Doctoral Program in Physical Therapy
Brian Shea, U.S. Army-Baylor University Doctoral Program in Physical Therapy
John Childs, U.S. Army-Baylor University Doctoral Program in Physical Therapy
Benjamin Hando, U.S. Army-Baylor University Doctoral Program in Physical Therapy
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