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WHAT IS A PHYSIATRIST?

What is a Physiatrist?

A Physiatrist (“fizz-ee-at-trist”) is a physician specializing in physical medicine and rehabilitation. Physiatrist have diverse training and experience in disorders of chronic duration including neurologic, general and specific orthopedic conditions and chronic pain problems. As the population ages and as people survive conditions that once would have been fatal and as quality of life is becoming an increasing concern, the field of Physiatry is moving to the forefront of medicine. This specialty serves all age groups and treats problems that touch upon all the major systems of the body.

How did this specialty develop?

The field of physical medicine rehabilitation (PM&R) began in the 1930’s to address musculoskeletal and neurologic problems but broadened its scope considerably after WW II. As thousands of veterans came back to the United States with serious disabilities the task of helping to restore them to productive lives became a new direction for the field of medicine. The advisory board of Medical specialties granted PM&R its approval as a specialty of medicine in 1947.

What types of conditions does a Physiatrist treat?

Physiatrist are physicians who treat a wide range of problems from sore shoulders to spinal cord injuries. The focus of the specialty is in restoring function and returning individuals to productive vocational and social activities. Physiatrist treat acute and chronic musculoskeletal disorders. They may see a person who lifts a heavy object at work and experiences back pain. A softball player who sprains an ankle and needs rehabilitation to play again or a knitter who has carpal tunnel syndrome. Physiatrist treat patients who also have arthritis, tendonitis, any kind of back pain and work or sports related injuries.

Physiatrist treat very serious disorders of the musculoskeletal system that result in severe functional limitations as well. They are capable of treating a baby with a birth defect, someone who was involved in a very severe car accident or an elderly person with a broken hip. Physiatrist also treat people with spinal cord injuries, brain injuries, strokes, amputations, cancer and multiple sclerosis all requiring a long term rehabilitation process to help the individual return to a normal lifestyle as before the injuring event.

How do Physiatrist make a clinical diagnosis?

The diagnostic tools utilized are the same as those used by other physicians with the addition of special techniques and electro diagnostic medicine, like EMG and nerve conduction studies. These techniques help the Physiatrist to diagnose conditions that cause pain, weakness and numbness. Physiatrist are also trained in diagnostic/therapeutic injections that help determine the etiology of pain

What kinds of treatments do Physiatrist offer?

Physiatrist offer a broad spectrum of medical services. They do not perform surgery. Physiatrist may prescribe medications or assistive devices such as a brace or artificial limb. They also use diverse therapy such as thermomodalities including heat and cold, massage, biofeedback, traction, physical therapy, chiropractic therapy and therapeutic exercise. Dr. Suthar, in addition, has extensive experience and training in spine and orthopedic injections (including epidural injections).

Where do Physiatrist practice?

They practice in rehabilitation centers, hospitals, and private offices. They often have broad practices but some concentrate on one area such as pediatrics, sports medicine, geriatric medicine, brain injury, spinal care, etc. Dr. Suthar specializes in the spine and orthopedic conditions.

Information on Dr Suthar's practice:

Dr. Suthar is board-certified and licensed in PM&R. His practice at the at the Pain Prevention and Rehabilitation Center focuses on the non-surgical care of patients with back and neck problems. He also treats patients with work-related injuries, musculoskeletal sports injuries, EMG/NCS studies, myofascial pain disorders, osteoporosis, carpal tunnel syndrome, and chronic pain injuries. Dr. Suthar also has extensive clinical training in rehabilitative disorders. In order to provide patients with more choices, Dr. Suthar has integrated ‘Alternative Medicine’ remedies with traditional medical treatments.

In the treatment of spine and orthopedic conditions, Dr. Suthar has extensive experience in injection management. For all spine related injections he utilizes x-ray guidance for specific and safe injection procedures.

Armed with a holistic and multidisciplinary approach to patient care, Dr. Suthar individualizes patient care and emphasizes functional recovery in both the workplace and home. Emphasis is placed on the quality of life, functional restoration, and long-term well-being.

  • Spine Care
    • Low back problems
    • Neck injuries
    • Athletic back injuries
    • Fractures
    • Scoliosis
  • Carpal Tunnel Syndrome
  • Sports related injuries
  • Neurologic disorders
  • Myofascial problems
  • Osteoporosis(prevention and treatment)
  • Chronic pain syndromes
  • Degenerative
  • Arthritis (hip/knee/shoulder)
  • Orthopedic Problems
    • Knee
    • Shoulder
    • Hip

Contact Us

13710 Olive Boulevard (Primary Office)
Chesterfield, MO 63017
Telephone: 314-469-PAIN (7246)

Fax: 314-469-7251
Exchange: 314-441-6965 (for after-hour Emergencies Only)

Hours:
Monday thru Friday
8:30 AM – 4:30 PM