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Is telehealth physical therapy as effective as in-person treatment?

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Telehealth physical therapy, or virtual physical therapy (PT), can be just as effective as in-person treatment for many patients. In some cases, virtual PT may be even more effective for some patients. 

Virtual PT relies on technology. But it is technology that many people are familiar with. Virtual PT sessions typically involve working with a physical therapist via an online video feed. Such sessions are very similar to doing an online video call with your friends or family. Virtual PT can also allow patients to connect with their physical therapist through a computer or smart device. 

The care that telehealth physical therapy can provide is often just as beneficial as in-person physical therapy. There are even some benefits of virtual PT that you may not get from in-person sessions. 

Four potential benefits of telehealth physical therapy

One reason that telehealth physical therapy can be considered just as effective as in-person therapy is the many benefits it can offer. Some of these benefits include: 

  1. Lower rehospitalization numbers — Patients who have surgery may need to be rehospitalized because of post-surgical complications. However, a study on patients who had a total knee replacement found that only 8% of the virtual PT patients required rehospitalization. However, nearly 21% of the in-person PT patients had to be rehospitalized
  1. Decreased costs — Doing virtual PT can also offer significant cost savings. A virtual PT study reveals that using this service after a knee replacement saved patients $2,745 on average
  1. Improved range of motion (ROM) — Virtual PT is effective at improving patients’ ROM following a surgery. It has even been shown to be just as effective as in-person PT at meeting this goal. One post-knee replacement therapy study found that virtual PT patients and in-person PT patients had about the same improvement in their: 
  • Knee flexion
  • Knee extension
  1. Reduced pain — A major goal of both in-person and virtual PT is to decrease pain. Medical research shows that both of these services can help you meet this goal. Researchers reveal that virtual PT and in-person PT patients had about the same level of pain relief 12 weeks after a total knee replacement

Find highly effective telehealth physical therapy from Agile Virtual PT

You can get telehealth physical therapy that’s as or even more effective than in-person PT from Agile Virtual PT. Our team includes more than 400 clinicians who are dedicated to helping patients virtually. The virtual PT we offer has also been shown to reduce pain in 93% of our patients. In addition, you can easily find out if our virtual PT services are right for you. All you have to do is sign up for a free screening with us to learn if virtual PT is an option for you. 

Contact our team today for more information about all the virtual PT services we offer or to schedule your initial appointment.