Study-Unit Description

Study-Unit Description


TITLE Musculoskeletal Physiotherapy

LEVEL 02 - Years 2, 3 in Modular Undergraduate Course


DEPARTMENT Physiotherapy

DESCRIPTION This study-unit introduces the students to the basics of musculoskeletal physiotherapy and expands on various topics to deepen the knowledge acquired.

Study-unit Aims

To encourage the acquisition of knowledge in musculoskeletal physiotherapy.

The students will be trained to:

- recognise, assess and manage a patient suffering from any musculoskeletal injury;
- have the sufficient ethical, professional and communication skills to organise and manage a patient admitted to an Orthopaedic Ward or on an outpatient basis.

Learning Outcomes

1. Knowledge & Understanding:
By the end of the study-unit the student will be able to:

- Describe the aetiology, pathology, clinical features, complications and prognosis of various musculoskeletal conditions;
- Be conversant with the pathology, pathophysiology and various treatment disciplines available for all fractures of the upper and lower limbs;
- Describe the mechanism of injury and pathological changes which occur in a prolapsed intervertebral disc;
- Describe the common deformities of the spinal column and limb;
- Outline the causes and pathological changes which occur in diseases of bone;
- Describe the principles of management of prolapsed intervertebral disc, spinal deformities and diseases of bone;
- Assess, select and apply physiotherapy measures during immobilisation and rehabilitation of the above conditions.

2. Skills:
By the end of the study-unit the student will be able to:

- Examine and assess a patient with a peripheral nervous system deficit;
- Formulate a treatment programme from the presenting clinical features;
- Formulate and manage a programme of physiotherapy intervention;
- Recognise and evaluate clinical variations presented by a patient and review treatment objectives;
- Evaluate the effect of an evidence-based treatment programme;
- Demonstrate an appreciation of the multi-disciplinary approach to patient care;
- Interpret the indications for prescription and use of wheelchairs.

Main Text/s and any supplementary readings

Most texts are available as handouts or online for registered students:

Various articles APLEY, A. G.; SOLOMAN, L. (1987) Apley’s System of Orthopaedics and Fractures (reprint) London/Butterworths

BARR, N. R.; SWAN, D. (1988) The Hand: Principles and Techniques of Splint Making 2nd Ed. London/Butterworths

BARR, M. L.; KIERNAN, J.A. (1988) The Human Nervous System: An Anatomical Viewpoint 5th Ed. London/Butterworths

BINKLEY, J. (1989) Overview of ligament and tendon structure and mechanics: Implications for clinical practice. Physiotherapy Canada 41:pp24-30

BLAND, J. (1993), Mechanisms of adaptation in the joint, in Crosbie, J. (ed) Key issues in Musculoskeletal Physiotherapy. Butterworth Heinemann

BUTLER, D.S. (1994) Mobilisation of the Nervous System. London/Churchill Livingstone

CLELAND, J. (2005) Orthopaedic Clinical Examination: An Evidence-Based Approach for Physical Therapists Carlstadt, NJ 07072, Icon Learning Systems

CRAWFORD ADAMS, J. (1992) Outline of Fractures 10th Ed. Edinburgh / Churchill Livingstone

CRAWFORD ADAMS, J. (1992) Outline of Orthopaedics 10th Ed. Edinburgh / Churchill Livingstone

DAVID, C. & LLOYD,J. (1998) Rheumatological Physiotherapy Mosby

DOWNIE, P.A. (1990) Cash’s Textbook of General Medical and Surgical Conditions for Physiotherapists 4th Ed London/Faber and Faber

DOWNIE P. A. (Editor) (1984) Cash’s Textbook of Orthopaedics and Rheumatology for Physiotherapists London/Faber and Faber

DRINKWATER, B.L. (1994) 1994 C.H. McCloy research lecture: does physical activity play a role in preventing osteoporosis? Research Quarterly for Exercise and Sport 65(3): pp 197-205

GUYTON A.C. (1987) Human Physiology and Mechanics of Disease 4th Ed. Philadelphia/W.B. Saunders

HARDY, M. (1989) The biology of scar formation. Physical Therapy 69,12: pp1014-1025

HERBERT, R. (1988) The passive mechanical properties of muscle and their adaptations to altered patterns of use. The Australian Journal of Physiotherapy. 34,3:pp141-149

HERBERT, R. (1993) Preventing and treating stiff joints in Crosbie, J. (ed) Key issues in Musculoskeletal Physiotherapy. Butterworth Heinemann

JONES, D.A.; Round, J.M.(1990) Skeletal muscle in health and disease: a textbook of muscle physiology Manchester University Press

KNIGHT, K.L. (1995) Cryotherapy in sport injury management Human Kinetics

LAMB, D.W.; HOOPE, T.; KUCZYUSKI, K. (1989) The practice of hand surgery 2nd Ed. London. Blackwell Scientific Publications.

MAGEE, D.J. (1992) 2nd ed. Orthopaedic Physical Assessment. W.B. Saunders Company.

NORKIN, C.J.; LEVANGIE, P.K. (1992) Joint Structure and Function: A Comprehensive Analysis. Philadelphia / F.A. Davies Company

RUTHERFORD, O.M. (1990) The role of exercise in prevention of osteoporosis. Physiotherapy76 (9): pp522-526

SALTER, M. I. (1987) Hand Injuries. A Therapeutic Approach Churchill Livingstone

SWEZEY, R.L. (1996) Exercise for osteoporosis-is walking enough? The case for site specificity and resistive exercise. Spine. 21(23) pp2809-281

TIDSWELL, M. (1998) Orthopaedic Physiotherapy Mosby

WYN PARRY, C.B. (1973) Rehabilitation of the Hand 3rd Ed. London/ Butterworths

Available as handouts or online for registered students:¶m=Journal%20Articles

STUDY-UNIT TYPE Lecture and Practical

Assessment Component/s Assessment Due Resit Availability Weighting
Practical SEM2 Yes 10%
Examination (2 Hours) SEM1 Yes 45%
Examination (2 Hours) SEM2 Yes 45%

LECTURER/S Tonio P. Agius
Victor Grixti
John Xerri De Caro

The University makes every effort to ensure that the published Courses Plans, Programmes of Study and Study-Unit information are complete and up-to-date at the time of publication. The University reserves the right to make changes in case errors are detected after publication.
The availability of optional units may be subject to timetabling constraints.
Units not attracting a sufficient number of registrations may be withdrawn without notice.
It should be noted that all the information in the study-unit description above applies to the academic year 2019/0, if study-unit is available during this academic year, and may be subject to change in subsequent years.