Conditions We Treat

Vitalis Physiotherapy have many years experience treating a range of conditions and offer a range of treatment options to improve your movement, reduce your pain and stiffness, speed up your healing process, to help get you moving again.

Osteoarthritis is a common chronic condition affecting the joints. It can occur in any joint, especially the knees, hips, neck, lower back, the bottom of your thumb or big toe, and in the small joints of your fingers.

Osteoarthritis happens when the hyaline cartilage that covers and cushions the end of each bone breaks down, causing pain, swelling and movement difficulties and progressing to bone spurs and joint damage if it worsens.

Osteoarthritis may be caused by:

  • Normal wear and tear due to ageing
  • An old injury like a fractured bone
  • Inflammatory diseases like Lyme disease
  • Other forms of arthritis
  • Other medical conditions like diabetes, Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome or haemochromatosis
  • Obesity as the extra weight places more pressure on the joints
  • A sedentary lifestyle
  • A genetic predisposition.

Arthritis Queensland provides valuable information and support for people living with osteoarthritis.

How Vitalis Physiotherapy may be able to help you:

  • Arranging X-rays to determine the extent of your osteoarthritis
  • Liaising with your GP over treatment options
  • Fitting braces or orthotics to help you move more easily
  • Developing an exercise program to improve agility, fitness, joint motion and muscle strength
  • Helping you lose weight if you need to
  • Helping prevent falls in older people.
  • Gait scan
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Headaches are a common problem, often caused by everyday lifestyle factors. Ongoing stress or poor posture can cause muscle tension in your back, shoulders and neck, which leads to a tension headache. Underlying neck problems can also cause headaches.

A cervicogenic headache is a pain felt in your head that actually originates in your neck. You might experience a headache alongside neck pain and stiffness.

Your neck is a relatively small column that connects your weighty head to your body. Your cervical spine, the 7 small vertebrae in your neck, is implicated in headache and migraine conditions. It’s also thought to be behind other symptoms such as dizziness, vertigo, cyclic vomiting and unexplained eye pain.

How Vitalis Physiotherapy may be able to help you:

  • Determining the cause of your headaches
  • Advising on better posture, work habits, pillows and exercises to reduce stress on your body and make headaches less frequent
  • Guiding you through relaxation exercises to release muscle tension and avoid headaches.

We are trained in the Watson Headache Approach, which focuses on managing your neck’s role in headaches. This is a gentle (no neck cracking!) approach that avoids medication, radiation or injections. We use a series of gentle techniques in a systematic way to relieve and reduce headaches and migraine. This approach has benefited many patients. Indeed 80% of patients attending the Watson Headache Clinics in Sydney and Adelaide reported improvements of 80% of greater that continued for at least 12 months after treatment ended.

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Your neck is a small column supporting a big load connecting your head to your body.

Neck Pain (cervical pain) is a broad term used to describe any neck problems. A stiff or aching neck is very common, often combined with a limited range of movement. Some people also feel burning or a dull ache progressing to sharp pain. In severe cases, neck pain can cause pain, tingling, numbness, pins and needles going down the arm to your fingers. Neck pain is commonly associated with headaches.

The most common cause of neck pain is dysfunction of one or more joints in the cervical spine coupled with weak neck muscles.

There are different types of neck pain:

  • General neck pain is caused by facet joint stiffness and muscles tightness.
  • Wry neck involves one or more facet joints in your neck locking into one position and limiting movement. In most cases you will wake up with it. The pain is severe and the head could feel excessively heavy.
  • Postural neck pain is also known as an office neck or text neck and is linked to headaches. It’s caused by slouching in front of a screen. Prolonged poor posture (poking your chin out while rounding your back and shoulders) increases stress on your muscles and joints, causing tension and pain.
  • Cervical radiculopathy results from irritation of the nerve root as it exits the spinal column. This irritation can be due to physical compression of the nerve from a bulging disc or bony growth (osteophyte) or inflammation and swelling of nerve or nerve root. You may feel shooting pain, pins and needles, tingling, numbness or loss of power in the arm.

The right treatment for your neck pain depends on its cause. We’ll assess this at your first visit and develop a tailored treatment plan for you.

How Vitalis Physiotherapy may be able to help you:

  • Accurate diagnosis and education on your type of neck pain
  • Soft tissue mobilisation (massage) to reduce spasms in your spinal muscles
  • Joint mobilisation to restore balance in the affected area
  • Manual traction for compressed nerve roots
  • Nerve mobilisation for inflamed nerves
  • Complex exercise program to improve posture
  • Workplace ergonomic assessment.

Products that may assist with your recovery:

  • Spikey ball
  • Foam roller
  • Lumbar support/roll
  • Overdoor traction device
  • Adjustable contour pillow
  • Laser neck muscles re-trainer
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Lower back pain is a broad term used to describe any lower back pain that is aggravated by movements e.g. lifting, bending, sitting, and standing. You might feel pain in the middle of your back but it’s also commonly felt in the buttocks and thighs. Occasionally, pain shoots down the leg. You may also experience tingling, numbness or pins and needles when back pain is referred, such as sciatica or radicular pain.

As the spine is a complex structure a comprehensive assessment by our highly trained physiotherapist is essential in getting the accurate diagnosis and a clear treatment plan.

How Vitalis Physiotherapy may be able to help you:

  • With education
  • Dry needling to promote healing
  • Taping to off-load the affected area
  • Soft tissue mobilisation (massage) to reduced tension in your spinal muscles
  • Mobilising affected joints to restore optimal movement in your spine
  • Designing a progressive home exercise program to improve your strength and control
  • Ergonomic advice on your workstation to avoid further injury
  • Gait scan
  • Vitalise Your Back program to further improve your back strength and control and decrease possibilities of reinjuring.

Product that may assist with your recovery:

  • Spikey ball
  • Back brace (if it’s very painful when we first see you)
  • Foam roller
  • Lumbar support/roll
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Do you feel a pinch in your shoulder when you lift your arms up or when you’re swimming? If so, you may be suffering from a problem known as shoulder impingement or swimmer’s shoulder.

Shoulder impingement compromises the normal movement of your shoulder. When you lift your arm up, the tendons of your rotator cuff muscles that stabilise your shoulder get trapped as they pass through the shoulder joint in a narrow bony space called the subacromial space. Repeated pinching and irritation of these tendons and the bursa (the padding under the shoulder bone) can lead to rotator cuff injury and pain.

Common symptoms for rotator cuff impingement:

  • Pain when lifting your arm up
  • Pain that may radiate from the top of your shoulder to the lateral elbow
  • Pain when lying on the sore shoulder
  • Pain or weakness when attempting to reach or lift
  • Pain when putting your hand to a back pocket or scratching the back of your head
  • Pain reaching for the seat-belt, or out of the car window for a parking ticket
  • Shoulder pain at rest as your condition deteriorates

How Vitalis Physiotherapy may be able to help you:

  • Perform a complex examination to determine which of the many potential causes are relevant to your case
  • Provide you with kinesio taping to rapidly improve your shoulder pain and promote healing
  • Perform dry needling and soft tissue mobilisation to normalise muscle tension around your shoulder
  • Provide you with a customised rehabilitation plan to help restore biomechanics at your shoulder
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Lateral epicondylitis (tennis elbow) is an injury to structures involved in straightening the wrist and fingers. The injury is at the site where the forearm muscles attach to bone (lateral elbow). In some cases pain at your lateral elbow can be caused by problems in your neck.

You don’t have to be a tennis player to suffer from tennis elbow. It occurs from the repetitive movements and gripping actions where more force is applied to the area than the normal healthy tissue can handle. Tennis elbow can therefore stem from daily activities such as using scissors, cutting meat, carrying grocery bags, gardening, plumbing or bricklaying.

An acute flare up of tennis elbow may result in some inflammation or swelling. Chronic tennis elbow is associated with changes in the nerves and blood supply to the area as well as faults in muscle recruitment.

Unfortunately, rest as a treatment is rarely helpful. If left untreated, tennis elbow can last from 6 months to 2 years affecting your sport, daily activities and work. It easily recurs so it’s important to identify the cause of the injury to avoid future episodes.

How Vitalis Physiotherapy may be able to help you:

  • Assess whole upper limb biomechanics and your neck involvement
  • Advise on safer use of equipment (tennis racket, tools)
  • Manual therapy to mobilise joints in the elbow
  • Kinesio taping to unload muscles and speed up recovery
  • Soft tissue mobilisation to release spasms in the muscles restricting the range of movement
  • Dry needling for pain relief and releasing trigger points in the muscles
  • Specific exercise prescriptions to restore muscle strength and recruitment pattern
  • Shockwave therapy.
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Patellofemoral pain syndrome (PFPS or runner’s knee) is a condition that affects the cartilage on the underside of the knee cap (patella) and the structures which support it, as it moves up and down over the groove on the femur (thigh bone) when you bend and straighten your knee.

The injury happens to both top runners and amateurs alike, with some statistics showing it accounts for nearly 50% of all running injuries. Injury occurs when there is ‘mal-tracking’ of the patella in the femoral groove and a chronic stimulation of the pain nerves in the surrounding area.

The ‘mal-tracking’ may be due to a number of factors such as alignment of your leg, and abnormal muscle forces. Poor strength and flexibility in the hips, hamstrings and quadriceps have all been shown to contribute to this problem. However, training errors are the primary culprit. This can include an accelerated build-up of mileage, as well as excessive high-intensity running or hill work. Worn out or inappropriate footwear is also cited as a possible cause.

Typical symptoms for runner’s knee:

  • Gradual onset rather than sudden
  • Pain gradually becomes worse at late stage even when sitting
  • Pain during flexed knee activities such as squats, stairs, lounges
  • Tenderness around or behind your knee cap
  • Pain that is aggravated by downhill running
  • Dull pain when running on uneven terrain
  • Pain when you push on the patella bone

How Vitalis Physiotherapy may be able to help you:

  • Comprehensive assessment to determine what is underlying your patella mal-tracking
  • Taping to restore normal tracking of your patella and promote healing
  • Customised exercise program to strengthen weak body parts responsible for mal-tracking of your patella
  • Soft tissue mobilisation to improve muscles function around your knee.
  • Manual therapy to restore joint biomechanics
  • Gait scan
  • Prescription foot orthotics
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The MCL is the knee ligament on the medial (inner) side of your knee connecting the medial femoral condyle and the medial tibial condyle. It is one of four major knee ligaments that help to stabilise the knee joint.

MCL injury usually occurs during excessive forces acting from lateral (outside) to medial with the knee being in flexed position. This can occur during running, squatting, lounging or as a result of direct impact in contact sports.

MCL injury is classified based on its severity;

  • Grade 1 —  local tenderness, no swelling, ligament integrity is intact
  • Grade 2 —  marked local tenderness, can be localized swelling, ligament integrity is compromised with partial tear leading to laxity at the knee
  • Grade 3 —  complete tear of the ligament, knee feels unstable and is usually swollen, pain may be mild even though the injury is serious, usually associated with ACL injury

Treatment of MCL injuries is usually conservative. Recovery time takes up to six weeks for Grade 1 and mild Grade 2 injuries but can be up to 12 weeks for more severe Grade 2 and Grade 3 cases. Surgery may be needed in some cases.

How Vitalis Physiotherapy may be able to help you:

  • Education on the healing process
  • Dry needling to promote healing
  • Taping to off-load affected area
  • Soft tissue mobilisation to release spasm in muscles restricting the knee’s range of movement
  • Mobilising the knee joint to restore optimal movement
  • Specific, progressive home exercise program to help improve strength and stability at your knee and speed up return to sport
  • Hinge brace prescription
  • Gait scan
  • Orthotics prescription
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The ACL is a ligament in the middle of your knee that prevents buckling of the knee. It’s one of four knee ligaments that are critical to the stability of your knee joint. Most ACL injuries/tears occur during non-contact situations during pivoting, landing from a jump or sudden deceleration. You’ll often hear a popping sound at the time of injury. ACL injuries commonly occur alongside other injuries due to the location of the ligament and the mechanism of injury. They’re often associated with an MCL tear and/or medial meniscal tears.

There are three grades of ACL injury. A Grade 3 injury is a complete tear and often requires surgery. Rehabilitation after a full ACL tear usually takes 6-12 months.

How Vitalis Physiotherapy may be able to help you:

  • Advise if surgery may be required
  • Education on the healing process
  • Taping to reduce swelling
  • Soft tissue mobilisation to release spasm in muscles restricting the knee’s range of movement
  • Specific, progressive home exercise program to improve strength and stability at your knee and speed up return to sport
  • Treatment pre and post-operative
  • Prescribe orthotics to align your foot and lower limb
  • Prescribe a knee-supporting brace
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An ankle sprain is a stretch or tear in one or more of the ligaments of the ankle. Ankle ligaments are slightly elastic bands of tissue that keep the ankle bones in place. Because the ankle is responsible for both weight-bearing and mobility, it is particularly susceptible to injury. The relatively small joint has to withstand large forces exerted when walking, running and jumping, especially if the surface is uneven.

Most ankle sprains happen when the ankle twists or rolls suddenly, usually in a rapid and uncontrolled movement. The most common injuries happen when the foot rolls onto the outside of the ankle, straining the outside ligaments of the ankle joint.

Symptoms of a sprained ankle include:

  • Pain
  • Tenderness
  • Swelling
  • Bruising
  • Difficulty moving the ankle
  • Inability to put your full weight on the ankle

Soft tissue injury usually involves damage to small blood vessels that results in bleeding at the site of injury. This bleeding leads to inflammation, part of the natural healing process. However, the body tends to overreact to sudden traumatic injury and as a result excess inflammatory fluid accumulates which can result in secondary injury and longer recovery time.

Most people recover completely from mild sprains within two to six weeks. More severe sprains can take up to six months before you can return to full activity, or sport. Once a significant sprain occurs, without good rehabilitation the joint may never be as strong as it was prior to the injury. It is not surprising therefore that many people have a history of repeated ankle sprains. With the correct rehabilitation however, you can help your ankle become even stronger than it was before the injury.

How Vitalis Physiotherapy may be able to help you:

  • Guide you through initial acute stage
  • Taping to unload injured area
  • Ankle joint mobilisation to restore full movement
  • Exercise to restore proprioception at the ankle
  • Gait scan
  • Brace prescription to support strained ligaments
  • Orthotics prescription to maintain a healthy ankle
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Sciatica describes an injury that is irritating or impinging the sciatic nerve. Pain starts in your lower back/buttocks and runs down the back of the leg. In some cases, pain can reach your toes. In more severe cases pain can be accompanied by pins and needles, tingling and numbness. The pain in your leg is often more severe than pain felt in the back.

Common sciatica symptoms include:

  • Pain in the back of the leg that worsens when bending or sitting
  • Burning or tingling in the leg or foot
  • Numbness, pins and needles down your leg or foot
  • A shooting pain down the leg that makes it difficult to stand up

How Vitalis Physiotherapy may be able to help you:

  • Comprehensive assessment to determine the origin of your sciatic pain
  • Manual therapy to improve joint biomechanics (movement) in your lower back
  • Soft tissue mobilisation and dry needling to help release any spasms in your back or gluteal muscles
  • Specific nerve mobilisation manoeuvres to help reduce inflammation of the sciatic nerve
  • Personalised home exercise program to help speed up recovery.
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(plantarflexion). The Achilles tendon is an energy-absorbing and energy-releasing structure that is working throughout each stride. It absorbs the load as your foot makes impact with the ground (loads are often 3 times your body weight) and converts the energy to propel yourself during the push-off phase of a step (where forces are as high as 7 times your body weight). The Achilles tendon and calf muscle are therefore an essential unit, critical for efficient sporting and everyday activities.

The Achilles tendon is prone to overuse purely by the nature of its function. A weak posterior chain (the muscles that work together along the back of your body, including the back extensors, gluteus muscles, hamstrings, calves) can also be a cause of Achilles tendinopathy. It’s best to tackle this injury at the earliest point possible as the tendon’s poor blood flow can make recovery a slow process.

Common symptoms of Achilles tendinopathy:

  • Pain close to the heel, which is often sharp, poking and incapacitating
  • Pain along the Achilles tendon, at the back of the lower leg
  • Occasionally there can be mild swelling at the base of the tendon (near the heel) and redness
  • If you pinch the Achilles and it’s very sore, then the source of the problem is likely to be the tendon
  • Pain during and after running
  • In chronic cases there can be thickening or a thickened ‘lump’ along the tendon, especially when compared to the uninjured leg

How Vitalis Physiotherapy may be able to help you:

  • Examine you and develop a personalised treatment plan
  • Show you how to manage the injury
  • Use kinesio or sports taping to unload the injured Achilles tendon and promote healing
  • Perform dry needling and soft tissue mobilisation to normalise muscle tension in your posterior chain
  • Mobilise your joints to help improve movement at your ankle, knee and hip
  • Provide you with a customised rehabilitation plan to restore strength and endurance in your posterior body chain
  • Advise on shoes or orthotics
  • Gait scan
  • Shockwave therapy.
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Whiplash is neck pain resulting from sudden acceleration-deceleration forces on the neck. This causes the natural curves of the upper back and neck to be reversed and causes a colossal ‘compression force’ on the neck structures. The most common reasons for whiplash are motor-vehicle accidents (rear-end collision) physical assaults, sporting activities and slips or falls where the head is jarred or jolted.

Whiplash symptoms:

  • Neck, upper back or shoulder pain
  • Upper limb pain or weakness
  • Headache, heavy head
  • Nausea
  • Pins and needles, numbness in the face, upper limb and upper back area
  • Jaw pain

Treatment of the whiplash can be divided into 3 parts:

Phase 1, from 0-4 days after initial injury:

  • Unload painful area
  • Promote early healing
  • Maintain baseline physical activity

Phase 2, from after 4 days to 6 weeks:

  • Hands-on treatment including soft tissue mobilisation and manual therapy
  • Gentle strengthening exercises

Phase 3, from 6 weeks to 12 weeks:

  • Intensive strengthening program
  • Integration of the neck movement into whole body movement
  • Return to normal level of activity

How Vitalis Physiotherapy may be able to help you:

  • Examine you and develop a personalised treatment plan
  • Teach you how to manage your injury in each stage of the treatment
  • Provide you with taping or collar to unload injured areas and promote healing
  • Perform dry needling and soft tissue mobilisation to help normalise muscle tension around your neck and shoulders
  • Perform joint mobilisation to help restore full range of movement at affected spinal levels
  • Provide you with a customised rehabilitation plan to help restore biomechanics at your neck and whole body
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Plantar fasciitis is one of those injuries that seems to appear for no apparent reason starting with pain around your heel or the arch of your foot when you wake one morning.

The plantar fascia is a thick band of connective tissue in the sole of your foot. In people with poor foot biomechanics, the plantar fascia can become stressed and inflamed. Plantar fasciitis is most often associated with impact and running sports as well as obesity, pregnancy, tight calves and hamstrings muscles, wearing shoes with poor support or being on your feet all day.

In more advanced stages, pain will be present before, during and after physical activities. Recovery time depends on severity but can take up to three months. The treatment of plantar fasciitis does vary from person to person so please seek the advice of your physiotherapist or podiatrist.

How Vitalis Physiotherapy may be able to help you:

  • Soft tissue mobilisation of the plantar fascia, calf muscles, hamstrings and gluteal muscles
  • Dry needling to help promote healing of your plantar fascia
  • A progressive strengthening exercise program for your lower limb muscles
  • Taping to provide support for the foot and plantar fascia
  • Gait scan with customised orthotics to support your arches, absorb shock and correct gait pattern
  • Shockwave therapy.
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Correct rehabilitation helps you make a good recovery from your surgical procedure.

Pre-surgery physio involves an exercise program that you do for 4-6 weeks before your op. This helps you enter surgery in good shape with improved muscle strength and range of movement. Getting into better shape before surgery can make for a quicker recovery, sometimes with less pain.

After your procedure, we move into the post-surgical phase of physio where our goal is to help you return to optimal physical function.  Patients who participate in the post-surgical rehabilitation process often have better results and recovery experiences than those who don’t.

Vitalis physiotherapy can help you with rehab from:

  • Shoulder surgery such as rotator cuff repairs
  • Total joint replacements such as knee, hip, shoulder
  • Anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) reconstruction
  • Neck and back surgery such as laminectomy, fusions, decompression
  • Arthroscopic knee surgeries such as lateral release, meniscectomies, meniscal repairs
  • Achilles tendon repairs

Carpal Tunnel Syndrome(CTS) is a common condition that causes pain, numbness, tingling and weakness in the hand and arm. Symptoms can occur at night or when you try to use your hands or grip objects.

CTS occurs when the median nerve, one of the major nerves in your hand, is squeezed, irritated, inflamed or compressed as it travels through your wrist. It is commonly associated with overuse but can also occur secondary to another health condition. Carpal Tunnel Syndrome is more prevalent in women, especially during pregnancy, and in people with diabetes or thyroid diseases.

In most patients, carpal tunnel gets worse over time. Therefore, early diagnosis and treatment is highly recommended.

How Vitalis Physiotherapy may be able to help you:

  • Assess your biomechanics and ergonomics to help reduce nerve irritation and prevent further damage
  • Specific exercises to promote nerve healing and improve muscle control in your upper limb
  • Advise you on how to modify aggravating activities to reduce your symptoms
  • Manual therapy to help restore normal movement at the joints in your wrist
  • Soft tissue mobilisation to help reduce compressive forces on your joints in your wrist
  • Fit you with a wrist splint
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Interested in Physiotherapy?

If you have an injury or condition that’s been bothering you for a while, talk to Vitalis Physiotherapy about treatment options that could help you.

Contact us for more details about conditions we treat.

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Sinnamon Park Village

3/58 Oldfield Road, Sinnamon Park Qld 4073

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