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Questions About Physical Therapy Sessions

How Should I Dress?
You should wear loose fitting clothing, so you can expose the area that we will be evaluating and treating. For example, if you have a knee problem, it is best to wear shorts. For a shoulder problem, a tank top is a good choice. For low back problems, wear a loose fitting shirt and pants.

What Do I Need to Bring with Me?
Make sure you bring your physical therapy referral from your Silver Spring, Maryland-based doctor and your payment information. If your insurance is covering the cost of physical therapy, bring your insurance card. If you are covered by Workers' Compensation, bring your claim number and your case manager's contact information. If you are covered by auto insurance or an attorney lien, make sure you bring this information.

What happens during my first visit?
First, you will arrive at your appointment with your paperwork completed. You will provide us with your prescription or referral. We will copy your insurance card. You will be seen for the initial evaluation by the therapist. The therapist will discuss the following:

• Your Medical History
• Your Current Problems & Complaints
• Pain Intensity, What Aggravates It, & What Eases It
• Your Goals with Physical Therapy
• Medications, Tests, & Procedures Related to Your Health
• Impacts on Your Daily Activities or Functional Limitations


During your initial consultation, our therapists perform objective evaluation. They may perform special tests to confirm or rule out the presence of additional problems. The evaluation may also include:

• Posture Assessment to test the positions of joints relative to the ideal
• Palpation, which is using touch to test for tenderness, swelling, inflammation, and soft-tissue integrity
• Range of Motion, which examines the quality of movement and any restrictions
• Muscle Testing, which checks for and grades strength and the quality of the muscle contraction
• Neurological Screening where the therapist checks nerve and muscle communication, as well as reflexes

The therapist at Aspen Hill Physical Therapy will then formulate a list of problems you are having and how to treat those problems. A plan is subsequently developed with the input of the patient and their primary care physician. This includes:

• How Many Weeks You Will Need Therapy
• What Is Expected after Discharge from Therapy
• How Many times You Should See the Therapist per Week
• Home Programs
• Patient Education
• Short-Term & Long-Term Goals

What Will I Have to Do after Physical Therapy?
Some patients will need to continue with home exercises. Some may choose to continue with a gym exercise program. Others will complete their rehabilitation and return to normal daily activities. It is important that you communicate your goals to your therapist, so he or she can develop a customized program.

How Long Will Each Treatment Last?
Typically, physical therapy treatment sessions last 30 to 60 minutes per visit.

How Many Visits Will I Need?
This is highly variable. You may need one visit or you may need months of care. It depends on your diagnosis, the severity of your impairments, your past medical history, etc. You will be re-evaluated on a monthly basis. When you see your Silver Spring, Maryland-based doctor, we will provide you with a progress report with our recommendations.