To evaluate patient’s understanding regarding specialist in Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation (PMR), conditions treated and procedures done at Institute of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation.
A cross-sectional study was conducted at Institute of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, Karachi, Pakistan from december 2018 to september 2019, amongst 200 randomly selected patients visiting out-patient department through a self-designed questionnaire, translated in local language, consisting of two portions; demographic information and questions to enquire awareness regarding PM&R specialist and practicing procedures.
Of the respondents, 45% were able to correctly identify that the physician they were referred to was PM&R specialist or a physiatrist or a rehabilitation specialist. While 30% of the patients wrongly identified PM&R specialist as exercise specialist, 12.5% as orthopaedic doctor, 8% referred them neurologist, 4% identified as artificial limb maker. Regarding conditions treated by a PM&R specialist, 46% thought that the physician they were consulting treats pain and 13% stroke, 8% muscle and joint problems and 8% cerebral palsy. Moreover responses for procedures physiatrist performs were 40.5% ‘don’t know’, 40% ‘nerve testing’, 6% ‘intra-articular injections’, 5.5% ‘surgery’, 5% ‘acupuncture’, and 4% ‘cupping therapy’. The responses by the patients corresponded with the nature of complain they had.
Majority of the patients attending a Rehabilitation physician’s Out-patient department are unaware of the name, conditions treated and the procedure performed by a PM&R specialist. Awareness of the field in general can help a larger number of patients visiting the appropriate field specialist for the treatment of disability thereby not only improving their functionality but also enhancing their health related quality of life.
Mustajab Fatima Metlo– Resident trainee (PM&R), Institute of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, DUHS
Dilshad Hunain Al Arabia– resident trainee, Institute of Physical Medicin and Rehabilitation, DUHS
quratlain syed– Resident trainee (PM&R), Institute of Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation