Category Archives: News

Mary Ann Messmer is Back in The Saddle!

BB-Horseback Riding (2)Mary Ann Messmer was able to return to her passion, horseback riding, after back surgery thanks to Apex Physical Therapy. Here is here story: 

“Just a quick testimonial about how great Tim is!! He was my therapist before and after I had back surgery in September 2016.  I had been to two physical therapists before I met Tim and they were not so hot. I am so fortunate to have found Apex in Blue Bell!!  I was leaving a  surgeon’s office one day, totally frustrated with what I was experiencing in PT.  I called a family friend who is a Physical Therapist and he referred me to Tim. Tim has been awesome before and after my surgery. He got me pain free and ready to get on with life — that includes horseback riding. He understood that my goals were perhaps different than the run of the mill 63 year old. My daughter was in a car accident and Tim helped her regain her mobility. My other daughter was having knee issues and although Blue Bell was too far for her, she is going to Apex in Chalfont. I can’t tell you how grateful I am to have met Tim.  Thanks for all you do!”

Will the Farmer’s Almanac be correct this year?

The Farmer’s Almanac reports that the winter of 2017-2018 may produce more snow that usual.  Are you prepared?

Here is a video showing the proper snow shoveling technique to minimize injury.  The most common injury is to the low back and it is due to lifting through the back and not using the legs.  In addition, minimize the twisting in the back, move your feet to position your body where you want the snow to go.

Have a Holiday season and Happy New Year!

Welcome Bryan Fritsch, PT, DPT

Bryan joined Apex in our Lionville/Exton location after graduating from Drexel University 2016.  During PT school, Bryan saw a way to give back to the community as well as complete his Doctoral final project.  During the summer of 2015, Bryan acted as a camp coordinator for Drexel University’s “Get Moving” program at the Columbia North YMCA. This is a physical activity and health education program targeting at risk youth between the ages of 8-12.

1. What is your favorite part about working one-on-one with patients through the duration of care?

At E&A therapy, I have the opportunity to work with all of my patients one-on-one throughout their episode of care. This exclusive access allows me to get comfortable working on each individual patient and really learn where their impairments are and what is causing their pain or problem. Additionally, by spending one-on-one time with my patients I am able to get to know my patients and allow them to open up to me about their pain. In this day and age not many medical professionals get to spend more than a few minutes with each patient and with this treatment model I have the privilege to spend upwards of an hour with each of my patients every time I see them. I truly believe I can perform my best and have the most promising patient outcomes when I can work with one patient at a time.

2.  Please share with us your most memorable patient and their story.

I think the world of my patients and every one of them offers a unique story or memorable moment.  I have an abundance of stories and patients who have had an impact on my life. In particular, one of my patients presented with bilateral plantar fasciitis and in high levels of pain. Despite the high levels of pain she was an absolute joy to work with. This patient always liked to questioned why her feet would respond in certain ways. During our one-on-one time we would talk about a range of things including superhero movies, famous actors, and types of kitchen china. Despite all of our fun times this patient was as hard as nails and going through multiple life changes during her course of treatment. This patient has shown me the importance of hard work and dedication and how patients can truly reward therapists as well.

 3.  What do you like to do in your off time, outside the clinic?

I am a Philadelphia and Penn State sports fanatic. During my free time I enjoy being with family and friends and remaining physically active. Some of my favorite physical activities include running, swimming, and obstacle courses such as the Tough Mudder.

Welcome Daniel Greenberg, PT, DPT

Dan Joined Apex in our Blue Bell location after Graduating from Temple in 2016. Dan was the 2014 winner of Temple University DPT’s Matt Williams Scholarship, awarded to an individual possessing the qualities of humor, dedication to the profession and a servant’s heart. He presented doctoral research on the effectiveness of vestibular therapy for treatment of post-concussive dizziness. Dan enjoys the complexity of treating low back pain and looks forward to learning more advanced techniques in this area.

1.   What is your favorite part about working one-on-one with patients through the duration of care?

My favorite thing about working one on one with patients is being able to get to know who they are as a person, and what their lifestyles and goals are, rather than just what their injury is. I think that developing a rapport with patients, and gaining their trust is the most important thing a clinician can do to facilitate good communication and progress. Having the opportunity to work one-on-one with patients really helps to develop these relationships and turns you into their PT for life.

2.   Please share with us your most memorable patient, or patients, and their story?

I think my most memorable patient is a woman I treated on my final affiliation. She was a 70-year-old spark-plug who was as active as could be until she tripped over a curb and fractured her patella. She came to us after an operation to repair it with a network of wiring, and at the time could only bend her knee to about 25 degrees. All things considered, I had never met somebody with such a positive attitude or a more optimistic perspective towards her rehab (in retrospect, maybe her expectations were a little TOO high). After about 10 weeks of therapy 3x per week, it became pretty evident that she was not going to be able to actively bend her knee more than about 65 degrees without having another operation to removing her wiring. She was pretty discouraged by the thought of another operation, but somehow kept her positive attitude. Not to mention, she really helped me as a student PT by constantly telling me how wonderful of a clinician I’d make someday, and telling me what an incredible difference I’d made in her life. She was on vacation during my last week of the affiliation, and on my last day she did the most thoughtful thing… With about an hour left in my last day at the clinic, a man walked through the door to deliver about 25 giant balloons along with a card and candy from this patient. She wrote me the nicest and most encouraging card I could ever have imagined. We worked together for 10 weeks, a short time in the grand scheme of things, but she made it quite clear how much of an impact I had on her. It was quite inspirational. I hope she knows what an impact she had on me too!!

3.   What do you like to do in your off time, outside the clinic?

In my spare time I like to camp, hike, play ice hockey, Australian Rules football, and the harmonica.

 

 

Jillian Knab for #LifeWithoutLimits

Jillian Knab treated in our Chalfont location and was able to get back to playing softball and keep her dream alive!! Here is her story:

“I’ve been playing softball for 8 years, and I have always dreamed of playing in college. Around 2 years ago I tore my rotator cuff when I was pitching. I had to get an MRI and go through physical therapy at a different facility (not Apex).  I went through useless arm exercises that only softened the pain. When I was released from PT I went back to playing but only for a month before the pain returned. My godmother suggested I go to Apex; however I was very leery because of my past experience.  At Apex they seemed to really care about me. Marsha got me back to throwing in a couple months. I really enjoyed going to physical therapy because everyone there wanted to make sure I got better. I could tell they really love their jobs. Thanks to Apex, I had the chance to play for the North Penn softball team at shortstop and play third base for the NP Eclipse without any pain!!!! I am so grateful for everyone at Apex because they have given me the opportunity to continue what I love.”

Congratulations Jillian!  Continued success when you go off to college!

Welcome Emily Fuertsch, PT,DPT

Emily Fuertsch 5-17-16

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Welcome to Apex Physical Therapy and our Pottstown/Coventry location Emily!

Emily is a member of the American Physical Therapy Association(APTA) and Pennsylvania Physical Therapy Association(PPTA).  She completed specialized courses in geriatrics and advanced musculoskeletal management while at Temple University. Emily has experience working with complex vestibular cases, such as vertigo and BPPV . She was also the recipient of the prestigious Best Platform Presentation for capstone project titled, “Effectiveness of High Intensity Exercise Post-Stroke.”

Emily’s treatment philosophy focuses on individualized patient treatments and educating her patients to help them manage their symptoms when not in therapy.  She utilizes evidence based practice to treat orthopedic and vestibular conditions including Balance and Gait Disorders, Vertigo, and Joint Replacement Rehabilitation. She is currently working towards her board certification in the area of geriatrics through the APTA.

As a physical therapist, through on-on-one treatment, I am able to build a unique relationship with each patient and in doing so help to assist and empower him or her to achieve their personal goals. I chose Apex Physical Therapy because their treatment model allows for and promotes this treatment philosophy more than any other physical therapy company  in the area.”

Outside of work I enjoy staying active with family and friends as well as watching or attending a variety of sporting events.

To schedule an appointment with Emily contact us at:

http://www.apex-pt.com/contact-us/

Helen Simmons for #LifeWithoutLimits

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Below is a success story submitted by Helen Simmons. Helen was seen in our Lafayette Hill clinic.  Her story demonstrates the importance of finding the right physical therapist!  How we treat and schedule our patients is built around one-on-one interaction, physical therapist to patient!  You never see a PT aide!  

Great work Helen.

“When I came to Apex it was my 3rd try at Physical Therapy. I was beginning to think I’d have to put up with chronic pain and no end in sight- I’m only 40 and have an active life so I was a bit depressed about that. My new Orthopedic Doctor recommended Ian and inspired me to give Physical Therapy another go. The atmosphere at Apex is very positive and the staff makes it fun at times. After 3 months of doing as I was told, at Apex and at home, I’m so much better and have barely any pain at all. Thanks guys!!”

Great Job Ian and the Lafayette Hill staff!!

Featured PT- Danielle Azar, PT, DPT

Stewie

Meet Danielle Azar!

Danielle is a staff Therapist at our Blue Bell location.

1  .What is your favorite part about working one-on-one with patients through the duration of their care?  I love being able to see my patients’ progress throughout their duration of care. It is my passion to help my patients meet their own functional goals and get better in physical therapy. If they were being followed more often by another PT, PTA or assisted by PT aides, I would not get the pleasure of seeing their progress from visit to visit. I love the motto here at E&A where patients stick to one PT

2.  In your words, what is the “E&A Difference?” Getting to spend  1-on-1 time with our patients and having treatment directed by your PT only!  Our standards here do not require quantity but quality. We do not have to see 15 plus patients to make any productivity standards. We see on average 10 patients a day, and that enables us to spend quality time with our patients and provide only the best treatment. Almost everyone receives manual therapy intervention, which is a hands on treatment approach to help our patients restore their normal function. Their exercises are then determined by their PT for their specific impairments. There is no cookie-cutter approach here at E&A; everything is individualized!

 3Please share with us your most memorable patient, or patients, and their story.  It is hard to choose just one. I remember a patient who made tremendous progress and quickly; he was a gym teacher with 2 young children and had trouble working and playing with his kids. He came in to PT after multiple back surgeries with another one scheduled. I wished I had seen him prior to those surgeries! He presented with significant pain and loss of motion, sensation and strength and had difficulty walking.  We provided treatment on day 1 with the evaluation. Before the evaluation was even over, the patient was walking better and his strength improved so much that even he noticed and exclaimed, “Wow that was much better!” I know when my patients are getting better based on some objective measures but it is great when they recognize it and appreciate it, in such a short amount of time. Needless to say, his scheduled surgery was cancelled!!

 4. What do you like to do in your off time, outside the clinic?  My husband and I have been spending a lot of time getting ready for the arrival of our daughter, our new addition to the family;  spending time with family and friends and cuddling with our fur baby, Stewie.

 

Yolanda Anderson for #LifeWithoutLimits

Below is one of many success stories, contributed by our patient, Yolanda Anderson. Her recovery inspires us to do what we do. Go Yolanda!

1. What made you consider Physical Therapy?

I was referred by my Orthopedist.

2. How have your perceptions/expectations changed since beginning treatment with Apex?

I should have sought treatment sooner. My therapist not only helped to treat my injuries but taught me preventative exercises that I could do at home on my own.

3. What has been the best part of your recovery?

I am now able to participate in physical activities without any pain, such as running and strength.

4. What can you do now that you couldn’t do before starting therapy? Long distance running.

Prior to coming to therapy I couldn’t run past two miles without knee pain. Now I can run a full marathon.

Below is a note from Yolanda about her experience:

“I was experiencing minor knee pain off and on while running. The pain worsened and I was diagnosed with IT band syndrome. I began receiving Graston and ART techniques at Apex along with exercises to strengthen my hips. I was advised by my physical therapist to stop running as the pain persisted. After a month or so, I was able to gradually start running again while continuing treatment. I have completed many running events since the start of my treatment, including a full marathon. I’m happy that Desirae was able to help me get back to pain free running.”

–Yolanda Anderson

Phyllis Krichev for #LifeWithoutLimits

Below is one of many  success stories, contributed by our patient, Phyllis Krichev . Her recovery inspires us to do what we do.  Go Phyllis!

1. What made you consider Physical Therapy?

All other options had been exhausted, i.e., injections, medications, pain management, as well as another reputable physical therapy venue (which actually aggravated my arm), at which point my neurologist suggested Excel.

2. How have your perceptions/expectations changed since beginning treatment with Excel?

Both my perceptions of physical therapy in general and my expectations specifically have changed 180 degrees. Prior to my Excel experience my perceptions could fairly be described as skeptical; my expectations were rather dim.

3. What has been the best part of your recovery?

Regaining a right arm which once again functions thereby retaining my ability for independent living.

4. What can you do now that you couldn’t do before starting therapy?

I would have to say that I can do countless things now that I could not do before therapy. I can wash my hair, open the oven door, drive with both hands, and even just lay down in bed. In short, I can now do a myriad of tasks required to successfully get through any given day.

The following is a letter we received from Phyllis following her treatment.

Perhaps you are wholly aware of the asset you have in Cherry Hill. In the unlikely event that you are not, I feel compelled to add my two cents. It has been six months since I started therapy. And before I continue, let me preface my remarks with this caveat, what I am writing is simply accurate and without embellishment.

Having been diagnosed with Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy, I knew the challenge to restore function in a shoulder with adhesive capsules became more difficult. On my first day I could barely lift my arm away from my body. However, even with the major roadblock that is RSD, my PT has cajoled this very arm to great heights, to a place where I can once again function independently. It has been my PT’s expertise, initiative, creativity, and unparalleled sticktoitiveness that it bringing me back from desperation. 

And, of course, a span of six months affords me a good deal of time to observe. The overall environment created by your Clinic Director is one of the most conducive to healing. Therapists don’t simply work on patients but they very smartly work with them as well. Patients are working hard with smiles on their faces! I am a seventy year old woman who unfortunately has been in and out of therapy for fifty of those years. And I can tell you  without reservation that I have never seen a therapeutic environment so healthy and healing! All of which is owing to the stewardship of your Clinic Director. And I, for one, wanted to acknowledge his talent and abilities and your good sense and leadership.”