Yesterday, APTA participated in a congressional briefing on musculoskeletal care and the growing short- and long-term impact of musculoskeletal injuries in the nation's military. The briefing, hosted by Sen Jerry Moran (R-KS), along with the US Bone and Joint Initiative (USBJI) and its participating members that include APTA, followed USBJI's 2-day summit in which attendees developed a consensus statement on the value of musculoskeletal care.
APTA member COL Barbara Springer (ret), PT, PhD, OCS, SCS, former chief of Physical Therapy Service at Walter Reed Army Medical Center and National Naval Medical Center, and other orthopedic and rheumatology experts addressed the increasing number of musculoskeletal injuries sustained by veterans of Operation Enduring Freedom and Operation Iraqi Freedom. Springer spoke about the role of physical therapy in injury prevention and rehabilitation, specifically in the wounded warrior transition units. She also noted that today's recruits are not as fit as previous generations and described the Army's new physical fitness test. (View Springer's full remarks.)
Retired Marine Michael Jackson, who has early onset osteoarthritis, said he "vividly remembers" the day in 2006 when he felt the first pain in his shoulder.
COL Barbara Springer (ret), PT, PhD, OCS, SCS, is national director of Project HERO for Ride 2 Recovery, a nonprofit organization that promotes cycling as physical and psychological rehabilitation for injured veterans.
David Borenstein, MD, president of the American College of Rheumatology, spoke about the increased incidence of osteoarthritis in members of the military in their 20s, 30s, and 40s compared with the general population.