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Trauma-Informed Assessment and Evaluation of Musculoskeletal Pain

presented by James M. Elliott, PT, PhD, FAPTA and David M. Walton, PT, PhD

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Disclosure Statement:

Financial: James M. Elliott receives compensation from MedBridge for the production of this course. He is the coauthor of Musculoskeletal Pain: Assessment, Prediction and Treatment and is involved with a variety of NIH projects.

Nonfinancial: James M. Elliott has no competing nonfinancial interests or relationships with regard to the content presented in this course.

Financial: David M. Walton receives compensation from MedBridge for the production of this course. He is the coauthor of Musculoskeletal Pain: Assessment, Prediction and Treatment and is an employee at Western University Canada.

Nonfinancial: David M. Walton has no competing nonfinancial interests or relationships with regard to the content presented in this course.

Satisfactory completion requirements: All disciplines must complete learning assessments to be awarded credit, no minimum score required unless otherwise specified within the course.

MedBridge is committed to accessibility for all of our subscribers. If you are in need of a disability-related accommodation, please contact [email protected]. We will process requests for reasonable accommodation and will provide reasonable accommodations where appropriate, in a prompt and efficient manner.

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Video Runtime: 54 Minutes; Learning Assessment Time: 29 Minutes

Clinical assessment and evaluation of human symptoms and function are necessary parts of person-centered and targeted rehabilitation practice. However, evaluation also involves an implicit element of judgment regarding the "normality" of another person. This is an example of how power imbalances are enacted and reinforced in clinical practice. This course will introduce learners to concepts, tools, and techniques of trauma-informed practice that can be implemented during clinical assessment and evaluation toward an ethic of partnership and empowerment for all.

Meet Your Instructors

James M. Elliott, PT, PhD, FAPTA

James completed his PhD at the University of Queensland, Australia (UQ) in 2007 and a post-doctoral fellowship (2008-2010) at UQ. The focus of his interdisciplinary laboratory is to quantify altered spinal cord anatomy and whole-body skeletal muscle degeneration as potential markers of recovery following spinal trauma. He has been successful as an independent investigator as…

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David M. Walton, PT, PhD

David Walton (@uwo_dwalton) completed his BScPT in physical therapy at the University of Western Ontario in 1999, an MSc in neuroscience in 2001, and a PhD in health and rehabilitation science from Western in 2010. Following a combined 10 years of clinical practice, he is now an associate professor in the School of Physical Therapy…

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Chapters & Learning Objectives

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1. Defining Trauma and Its Relevance to Assessment and Evaluation

In this chapter, we introduce the important concepts to be expanded on in subsequent chapters. These include introductions to the topic, including definitions and epidemiology of trauma in North America, and couch the concepts of assessment and evaluation within a brief historical context of rehabilitation as a distinct healthcare profession.

2. Principles of Trauma- and Violence-Informed Care

This chapter introduces the concept of trauma-informed care from the perspective of rehabilitation professionals. This will include descriptions and operational definitions of best practice, including the value of a “universal precautions” approach to managing and mitigating re-traumatization.

3. Reflecting on Power and Trauma in Pain Assessment

This chapter will discuss pragmatic examples of tools and practices for self- and institutional reflection, identification of power imbalances, and ways to start the conversation around enacting more trauma-informed practices in your clinical context.

4. Reimagining a Trauma- and Violence-Informed Approach to Assessment and Evaluation of the Person in Pain

In this final chapter, we consider ways of conducting a trauma-informed assessment of the patient in pain using a “universal precautions” approach.

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