The McKenzie Method, otherwise known as Mechanical Diagnosis and Therapy (MDT) is a systematic process of assessing and treating spinal conditions. It emphasises patient self-management, which is useful for patients who are trying to find ways to be in control of their own lower back or neck pain.
A MDT assessment classifies conditions by patient responses to certain movements and positions of the spine. The system can quickly recognise those who will respond to conservative therapy and those who will not. It utilises the centralisation phenomenon, the movement of pain from an extremity to a more central location towards the spine. This occurrence is mostly identified in a patient’s physical examination, however a patient may describe such symptom changes whilst being in certain everyday positions. If centralisation is identified a good prognosis is indicated.
MDT treatment prescribes direction specific exercises that are individualised to each patient. Thedirection of the exercises is decided on each individual’s assessment findings. The idea is to provide patients with the knowledge to treat their own condition and in doing so, they reduce the risk of injury recurrence.
Any patient with spinal pain can be assessed through the method. It allows a therapist to recognise patients that can be helped, and those who need to be referred elsewhere. It can be used as a first point of call before referring patients for invasive treatment.
If you think the McKenzie Method may be suited to you, please contact one of our three credentialed McKenzie Physiotherapists.
Daniel Di Mauro at Advance Healthcare St Albans
Luke Surkitt at Advance Healthcare Boronia
Jon Ford at Advance Healthcare Boronia