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  • APTA Has Strong Presence at Safe Patient Handling Conference

    APTA members were prominent once again at the annual Safe Patient Handling and Movement Conference, held March 18-22, in Orlando, Florida. APTA member Kenneth Harwood, PT, PhD, CIE, welcomed the nearly 700 participants on behalf of APTA. A highlight of the conference was an awards presentation in which association member Marc Campo, PT, PhD, and research partner Amy Darragh, PhD, OTR, received the Bernice Owens Award for Research in Safe Patient Handling. In their presentation, Campo and Darragh reported that "… therapists are getting injured at work … and these injuries affect their productivity and quality of life. In addition, safe patient handling strategies were found to prevent injuries and may actually help patients." In addition to Harwood's presentation, other presentations were provided by APTA members Margaret Arnold, PT, CEES, Drew Bossen, PT, MBA, Judith Burnfield, PT, PhD, Patti Mechan, PT, MPH, CCS, Stephanie Radawiec, PT, DPT, MHS, Alexandra Rella, PT,DPT, and Kathleen Rockefeller, PT, ScD, MPH, MS.

    APTA cosponsored the conference, which has been held for 12 years, with the American Nurses Association, the Veterans Health Administration, and the National Institute of Occupational Safety and Health.  

    Pelvic Floor Exercises Effective for Stress, Urgency Incontinence

    Pelvic floor muscle training is effective for treating adult women with urinary incontinence (UI) without risk of side effects, according to a new report from the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ). The report also found that drug-based treatments can be effective, but the degree of benefit is low and side effects are common.

    In response to a request from the public, AHRQ funded a systematic review of the clinical research to determine what is known about the comparative effectiveness, benefits, and adverse effects of UI interventions for women and the utility of methods for diagnosis and treatment evaluation. The systematic review included 905 publications presenting the results of clinical studies published from January 1990 through December 2011.

    Researchers concentrated on 2 types of incontinence—stress incontinence and urgency incontinence. Exercises to strengthen the pelvic floor muscles were found to be effective in increasing women's ability to hold their urine. Pelvic floor muscle training combined with bladder training improved mixed (stress and urgency) incontinence, the report found. Estrogen treatment was found to be effective in treating stress incontinence, but with some side effects. Another drug treatment, the antidepressant duloxetine, was not found to be effective, while carrying high risk of side effects.

    Overall, the report found that the drugs reviewed showed similar effectiveness. However, with some drugs, more women discontinued treatment due to bothersome side effects.

    The full report is available from AHRQ. A summary is provided to clinicians to inform discussions of options with patients and to assist in decision making along with consideration of a patient's values and preferences.

    Call for Posters: Active Aging

    Physical therapists are invited to share programs, best practices, or research study through poster presentations at the International Council on Active Aging Conference, November 29-December 1, in New Orleans.

    The International Council on Active Aging (ICAA) is seeking 3 categories of posters:

    • Research—this category is aimed at applied and translational research, although basic and clinical research also is considered. Research studies must be completed, with final results relevant to work with older adults.
    • Programs—this category includes evidence-based, evidence-informed, and proven programs that have a structure and defined goals. This category is open to programs that are not based on a research study but do meet a need of older adults and have demonstrated outcomes.
    • Promising and best practices—this category is for a proven approach that has worked successfully in meeting a need of older adults. The practices can be adopted by other organizations seeking positive results. Given the range of responsibilities of ICAA delegates, a promising/best practice could be, for example, an organizational structure, age-friendly design, or a method to disseminate a program.

    Peer reviewers will evaluate proposals based on adherence to the criteria listed in the Call for Poster Presentations. The deadline for poster applications is May 4.