Academy of Chiropractic’s Lawyers PI Program

Narratives 16

From the Desk of :
Mark Studin DC, FASBE (C), DAAPM, DAAMLP

"Immobilization & Walking Aids"

When caring for patients the normal progression is urgent care/pain relief, stabilization, rehabilitation and maintenance. In that progression scale somewhere between pain relief and rehabilitation of mobilization is often (usually) required. To relieve pain and help reduce persistent irritation taking the pressure off a joint is often clinically indicated using the following modalities:

  1. Corset
  2. Collar
  3. Neck brace
  4. Splint
  5. Sling
  6. Bandaging
  7. Strapping
  8. Supports
  9. Walking boot

In addition the following walking aids are often required:

  1. Crutches
  2. Wheelchairs
  3. Walking frame
  4. Walking stick
  5. Cane

When reporting the use of any of the above modalities is also important to note the level of utilization. The following nomenclature is an example:

  1. Short-term: less than one month or one course of utilization
  2. Prolonged intermittent: repeated use at irregular intervals
  3. Prolonged regular use: repeated use at regular intervals

In addition you should note both the starting date and ending date for the utilization of any of the above modalities. It would be consistent to report the following, "Mrs. Jones was prescribed both a low back support and a walking stick or cane and utilize both from January 3, 2013 until April 1, 2013".

This level of language is important to document in the medical – legal – insurance environments and it is incumbent upon the Doctor to report the utilization. This should be added into your narratives and explain to attorneys that this is also an important CEPIC issue.