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Use of the International Classification of Functioning and Disability to Develop Evidence-Based Practice Guidelines for Treatment of Common Musculoskeletal Conditions

Project Overview
James J. Irrgang, PT, PhD, ATC
Joseph Godges, DPT, MA, OCS

A summary of the project and progress to date, including presentation of the first evidence-based guidelines for management of common conditions affecting the foot and ankle, hip, and cervicothoracic spine, was presented at the Combined Sections Meeting in Boston on February 15, 2007. Shown below are the presentations that were given at CSM:

ICF Project Summary

In 2006, the Orthopaedic Section began a project to use the International Classification of Functioning and Disability (ICF) to develop evidence-based practice guidelines that will enhance diagnosis, intervention, prognosis, and assessment of outcomes for a variety of musculoskeletal conditions commonly managed by physical therapists. The ICF is a new model of disablement that was developed by the World Health Organization in 2001. In the ICF model, functioning and disability are classified in terms of body structure and function as well as in terms of activity and participation of the individual. The ICF model will be used to classify common musculoskeletal conditions, such as adhesive capsulitis, acute low back pain, patellofemoral pain and ankle sprains, in terms of impairment of body structure and function, activity limitations, and participation restrictions. These ICF classifications will be used to develop evidence-based guidelines for diagnosis, intervention, prognosis, and assessment of outcome. It is believed that these guidelines will advance orthopaedic physical therapist practice and could be used to guide professional and postprofessional education and to establish an agenda for future clinical research. Click here to read further.

The ICF project is a work in progress. We would greatly appreciate your feedback! Please click here to offer your comments and suggestions. Please include your name and practice setting along with your feedback.
Thank you!

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