Physical therapy is almost always a part of rehabilitation following a spinal cord injury. Each patient will have a different physical therapy experience, since the best program varies depending on the location and extent of the injury. The physical therapist will typically work with other medical professionals on a physical therapy plan. Other involved professionals include occupational therapists, psychologists, nurses, and case managers. The entire team is typically led by a spinal cord injury expert. Patients might do their physical therapy at a specialized facility, rehabilitation center, or hospital. The quality of physical therapy can make a huge difference in the long-term outcome of the injury. Patients must undergo physical activity following an injury to avoid muscle atrophy and retain function. Researchers recommend patients recovering from a spinal cord injury engage in muscle-strengthening exercises at least twice per week, along with a minimum of 150 minutes of aerobic exercise weekly.
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