Physical Therapy (PHYS THER)

Publisher: American Physical Therapy Association (1921- ), American Physical Therapy Association

Journal description

Founded in 1921, Physical Therapy is the official publication of the American Physical Therapy Association (APTA) and is an international, scholarly, peer-reviewed journal. Physical Therapy serves APTA members and other health care professionals by (1) documenting basic and applied knowledge related to physical therapy, (2) providing evidence for evidence-based practice in physical therapy, and (3) publishing a variety of research that is relevant to the field, diverse opinions that are based in scholarly arguments, and scientifically credible descriptive articles such as case reports. Physical Therapy, like the profession it serves, strives to enhance the health and well-being of all members of society.

Current impact factor: 2.53

Impact Factor Rankings

2015 Impact Factor Available summer 2016
2014 Impact Factor 2.526
2013 Impact Factor 3.245
2012 Impact Factor 2.778
2011 Impact Factor 3.113
2010 Impact Factor 2.645
2009 Impact Factor 2.082
2008 Impact Factor 2.19
2007 Impact Factor 2.152
2006 Impact Factor 1.51
2005 Impact Factor 1.672
2004 Impact Factor 1.95
2003 Impact Factor 1.592
2002 Impact Factor 1.658
2001 Impact Factor 1.145
2000 Impact Factor 1.222
1999 Impact Factor 1.164
1998 Impact Factor 1.192
1997 Impact Factor 0.833
1996 Impact Factor 1.136
1995 Impact Factor 0.798
1994 Impact Factor 0.854
1993 Impact Factor 0.617
1992 Impact Factor 0.558

Impact factor over time

Impact factor

Additional details

5-year impact 3.79
Cited half-life >10.0
Immediacy index 0.58
Eigenfactor 0.01
Article influence 1.20
Website Physical Therapy website
Other titles Physical therapy
ISSN 0031-9023
OCLC 1762333
Material type Periodical, Internet resource
Document type Journal / Magazine / Newspaper, Internet Resource

Publisher details

American Physical Therapy Association

  • Pre-print
    • Archiving status unclear
  • Post-print
    • Archiving status unclear
  • Conditions
    • Publisher will submit a copy of final published version to PubMed Central on behalf of NIH authors
    • Within 4 weeks of publication for release after 6 months from publication
    • Will work with authors of funding agencies requiring deposit in PubMed Central within 6 months.
    • Publisher last reviewed on 28/05/2015
  • Classification

Publications in this journal

  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Background: Electrodiagnosis can reveal the nerve and muscle changes following surgical placement of an extracellular matrix (ECM) bioscaffold for treatment of volumetric muscle loss (VML). Objective: The purpose of the present study was to characterize nerve conduction study (NCS) and electromyography (EMG) changes following ECM bioscaffold placement in individuals with VML. We also explored the ability of pre-surgical NCS and EMG to be used as a tool to help identify candidates that are likely to display improvements post-surgically. Design: Longitudinal case series. Setting: The study was conducted at the McGowan Institute for Regenerative Medicine at the University of Pittsburgh. Patient: Eight subjects with a history of chronic VML. Intervention: Surgical placement of ECM bioscaffold at the site of VML. Measurements: The strength of the affected region was measured using a hand-held dynamometer, and electrophysiologic evaluation was conducted on the affected limb with standard method of NCS and EMG. All measurements were obtained the day before surgery and repeated six months after surgery. Results: Seven out of eight subjects presented with a pre-operative electrodiagnosis of incomplete mononeuropathy within the site of VML. After ECM treatment, five of eight subjects showed improvements in NCS amplitude or needle EMG parameters. The presence of electrical activity within the scaffold remodeling site was concomitant with clinical improvement in muscle strength. Limitations: This study had a small sample size and subjects served as their own controls. The electromyographers and physical therapists performing the evaluation were not blinded. Conclusions: Electrodiagnostic data provides objective evidence of physiological improvements in muscle function following ECM placement at sites of VML. Future studies are warranted to further investigate the potential of needle EMG as a predictor of successful outcomes following ECM treatment for VML.
    Physical Therapy 11/2015; DOI:10.2522/ptj.20150133
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    ABSTRACT: Background: Medicare data from acute hospitals does not contain information on functional status. This limits the ability to conduct rehabilitation-related health services research. Objective: Examine the associations between five comorbidity indices derived from acute care claims data and functional status assessed at admission to an inpatient rehabilitation facility (IRF). Comorbidity Indices included the Tier comorbidity, Functional Comorbidity Index (FCI), Charlson Comorbidity Index, Elixhauser Comorbidity Index, and the Hierarchical Condition Category (HCC). Design: Retrospective cohort study METHODS: Medicare beneficiaries with stroke, lower extremity joint replacement, and lower extremity fracture discharged to an IRF in 2011 were studied (N=105,441). Data from the Beneficiary Summary File, MedPAR File, and Inpatient Rehabilitation Facility-Patient Assessment File were linked. IRF admission functional status was used as a proxy for acute hospital discharge functional status. Separate linear regression models for each impairment group were developed to assess the relationships between the comorbidity indices and functional status. Base models included age, gender, race/ethnicity, disability, dual eligibility, and length of stay. Subsequent models included individual comorbidity indices. Variance explained (R(2)) with each comorbidity index were compared. Results: Base models explained 7.7% of the variance in motor function ratings for stroke, 3.8% for joint replacement, and 7.3% for fracture. The R(2) increased marginaly when comorbidity indices were added to base models for stroke, joint replacement, and fracture: Charlson (0.4%, 0.5%, 0.3%), Tier (0.2%, 0.6%, 0.5%), FCI (0.4%, 1.2%, 1.6%), Elixhauser (1.2%, 1.9%, 3.5%), and HCC (2.2%, 2.1%, 2.8%). Limitation: Patients from three impairment categories included in the sample. Conclusions: The five comorbidity indices contributed little to predicting functional status. The indices examined were not useful as proxies for functional status in the acute settings studied.
    Physical Therapy 11/2015; DOI:10.2522/ptj.20150039
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    ABSTRACT: As rehabilitation specialists, physical therapists must continue to stay current with advances in technologies to provide appropriate rehabilitation protocols, improve patient outcomes, and be the preferred clinician of choice. To accomplish this vision, the physical therapy profession must begin to develop a culture of lifelong learning at the early stages of education and clinical training in order to embrace cutting-edge advancements such as, stem cell therapies, tissue engineering and robotics to name a few. The purposes of this article are to provide a current perspective on faculty and graduate student awareness of regenerative rehabilitation concepts and to advocate for increased integration of these emerging technologies within the doctor of physical therapy (DPT) curriculum. An online survey was designed to gauge awareness of principles in regenerative rehabilitation, and to determine whether the topic was included and assessed in doctoral curricula. The survey yielded 1006 responses from 82 DPT programs nationwide and indicated a disconnect in familiarity of the term regenerative rehabilitation and awareness of the inclusion of this material in the curriculum. To resolve this disconnect, the framework of the curriculum can be used to integrate new material via guest lecturers, interdisciplinary partnerships, and research opportunities. Successfully mentoring a generation of clinicians and rehabilitation scientists who incorporate new medical knowledge and technology into their own clinical and research practice depends greatly on sharing the responsibility among graduate students, professors, American Physical Therapy Association (APTA), and the DPT programs. Creating an interdisciplinary culture and integrating regenerative medicine and rehabilitation concepts into the curriculum cultivates individuals that will be advocates for interprofessional behaviors and will ensure the profession meets the goals stated in APTA Vision 2020.
    Physical Therapy 11/2015; DOI:10.2522/ptj.20150057

  • Physical Therapy 11/2015; 95(11):1466-1466. DOI:10.2522/ptj.2015.95.11.1466
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Background: Recent evidence suggests that childhood obesity is increasing in children who are developing typically as well as in children with autism spectrum disorders (ASD). The associations between physical activity (PA) levels and physical fitness components have not yet been objectively examined in this population but may have clinical implications for the development of secondary health complications. Objective: The objective of this study was to compare PA and physical fitness between secondary school-aged male students with ASD and typically developing (TD) peers, and assess possible interrelationships between PA and physical fitness levels in each group. Design: Cross sectional study. Methods: PA was recorded every 10 seconds by using accelerometry in 70 male students with (n = 35) and without (n = 35) ASD for up to 5 weekdays and 2 weekend days. The Brockport Physical Fitness Test was used to assess physical fitness. Results: The primary findings were that (a) participants with ASD were less physically active overall and engaged in moderate-to-vigorous PA for a lower percentage of time compared with TD participants during weekdays, (b) participants with ASD had significantly lower scores on all physical fitness measures, except body composition, and (c) group-dependent relationships existed between physical fitness profiles and PA levels. Limitations: The study design limits causal inference from the results. Conclusion: Specific interventions for maximizing PA and physical fitness levels in secondary school-aged male students with ASD are urgently required.
    Physical Therapy 09/2015; DOI:10.2522/ptj.20140353
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    ABSTRACT: Based on a behavioural medicine perspective, modern recommendations for physical therapists treating patients with spinal pain include performing a trustworthy physical examination, conveying the message that back pain is benign, and stressing that activity is a key to recovery. However, little evidence is available on how patients perceive these biopsychosocial messages and how a patient's perceptions of these messages relate to their recovery. The aim of this study is to explore the relationship between perceptions of treatment delivery that are related to an evidence-based approach and psychological factors, treatment outcome and treatment satisfaction. Cohort study with 3 measurement points METHODS: Data on a total of 281 patients was collected. High catastrophizing and lower mood in patients were correlated to "Not perceiving the bio psychosocial message" measured 6 weeks after treatment start. Patients who didn't perceive the biopsychosocial message were at higher risk for disability and had lower treatment satisfaction 6 months after treatment start even when controlling for pretreatment pain intensity. "Not perceiving the biopsychosocial message" was not a mediator for treatment outcome and treatment satisfaction. Physical therapist's treatment orientation or attitudes were not related to the perception of the message by the patients. There was no measure of actual practice behaviour. Maladaptive cognitions and negative emotions seem to affect the way information provided during treatment is perceived by patients. The way information is perceived by patients, influences treatment outcome and treatment satisfaction. Physical therapists are advised to check that patients with higher levels of catastrophizing and lower mood perceived and interpreted a biopsychosocial message in the way it was intended. © 2015 American Physical Therapy Association.
    Physical Therapy 07/2015; DOI:10.2522/ptj.20140557
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    ABSTRACT: The group-level responsiveness of the Stroke Rehabilitation Assessment of Movement measure (STREAM-30) is similar to that of the simplified STREAM (STREAM-15), even though the STREAM-30 has twice as many items as those of the STREAM-15. To compare the responsiveness of the STREAM-30 and STREAM-15 at both group and individual levels in patients with stroke. For the latter level, the Rasch-calibrated 27-item STREAM (STREAM-27) was used because the individual-level indices of the STREAM-30 could not be estimated. Repeated-measurements design. In total, 195 patients were assessed with the STREAM-30 at both admission and discharge. The Rasch scores of the STREAM-27 and STREAM-15 were estimated from the patients' responses on the STREAM-30. We calculated the paired t test, effect size, and standardized response mean as the indices of group-level responsiveness. The significance of change for each patient was estimated as the individual-level responsiveness index, and the paired t test and test of marginal homogeneity were used for individual-level comparisons between the STREAM-27 and STREAM-15. At the group level, the STREAM-30, STREAM-27, and STREAM-15 showed sufficient and comparable responsiveness. At the individual level, the STREAM-27 detected significantly more patients with significant improvement and fewer patients with no change or deterioration than the STREAM-15 did. Few patients with subacute stroke showed deterioration at discharge, so the abilities of the two measures to detect deterioration remain inconclusive. The STREAM-27 detected more patients with significant recovery than the STREAM-15 did, although the group-level responsiveness of the two measures was the same. The STREAM-27 is recommended as an outcome measure to demonstrate the treatment effects of movement and mobility for patients with stroke. © 2015 American Physical Therapy Association.
    Physical Therapy 03/2015; 95(8). DOI:10.2522/ptj.20140331
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    ABSTRACT: Trunk control is thought to contribute to upper extremity (UE) function. However, this common assumption has not been validated. To investigate the effect of providing an external trunk support on trunk control and UE function, and examine the relationship between trunk control and UE function in people with chronic stroke and healthy controls. A cross-sectional study was conducted. Twenty-five participants with chronic stroke and 34 age and sex-matched healthy controls were recruited. Trunk control was assessed using the Trunk Impairment Scale (TIS), UE impairment and function were assessed with Fugl-Meyer (FMA-UE) and Streamlined Wolf Motor Function Test (SWMFT) respectively. The TIS and SWMFT were evaluated, with and without an external trunk support; the FMA was evaluated without trunk support. With trunk support, participants with stroke demonstrated improvement in TIS from 18 to 20 points (p<0.001); reduction in SWMFT performance time (SWMFT-Time) of the affected UE from 37.20 to 35.37 seconds (p<0.05); and improvement in the affected UE function (SWMFT-Functional Ability Scale) from 3.3 to 3.4 points (p<0.01). With trunk support, SWMFT-Time of healthy controls was reduced from 1.61 to 1.48 seconds (p<0.001) for the dominant, and from 1.71 to 1.59 seconds (p<0.001) for the non-dominant UE. Significant moderate correlation was found between TIS and FMA-UE (r = 0.53) in participants with stroke. The limitations include a non-blinded assessor and a standardized height of the external trunk support. External trunk support improved trunk control in people with chronic stroke; and had a statistically significant effect on UE function in both people with chronic stroke and healthy controls. The findings suggest an association between trunk control and UE when an external trunk support was provided. This supports the hypothesis that the provision of lower trunk and lumbar stabilization from an external support enables an improved ability to use the UE for functional activities. © 2015 American Physical Therapy Association.
    Physical Therapy 02/2015; 95(8). DOI:10.2522/ptj.20140487
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    ABSTRACT: Cast immobilization induces mechanical hypersensitivity, which disturbs rehabilitation. Although vibration therapy can reduce various types of pain, whether vibration reduces immobilization-induced hypersensitivity remains unclear. The purpose of this study was to investigate the preventive and therapeutic effects of vibration therapy on immobilization-induced hypersensitivity. The experimental design of the study involved conducting behavioral, histological, and immunohistochemical studies in model rats. Thirty-five Wistar rats (8-weeks old; all male) were used. The right ankle joints of 30 rats were immobilized by plaster cast for 8 weeks, and 5 rats were used as controls. The immobilized rats were divided randomly into the following three groups: 1) immobilization-only group (Im, n = 10), 2) vibration therapy group 1, for which vibration therapy was initiated immediately after the onset of immobilization (Im+Vib1, n = 10), and 3) vibration therapy group 2, for which vibration therapy was initiated 4 weeks after the onset of immobilization (Im+Vib2, n = 10). Vibration was applied to the hind paw. The mechanical hypersensitivity and epidermal thickness of the hind paw skin were measured. To investigate central sensitization, calcitonin gene-related peptide (CGRP) expression in the spinal cord and dorsal root ganglion (DRG) was analyzed. Immobilization-induced hypersensitivity was inhibited in the Im+Vib1 group but not in the Im+Vib2 group. Central sensitization, which was indicated by increases in CGRP expression in the spinal cord and the size of the area of CGRP-positive neurons in the DRG, was inhibited in only the Im+Vib1 group. Epidermal thickness was not affected by vibration stimulation. Our data suggest that initiation of vibration therapy in the early phase of immobilization may inhibit the development of immobilization-induced hypersensitivity. © 2015 American Physical Therapy Association.
    Physical Therapy 02/2015; 101(7). DOI:10.2522/ptj.20140137
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    ABSTRACT: Quadriceps strengthening is a common rehabilitation exercise for knee osteoarthritis (OA). More information is required to determine whether targeting muscle power is a useful adjunct to strengthening for people with knee OA. To identify the predictive ability of knee extensor strength and knee extensor power in the performance of physical tasks in adults with knee OA. A cross-sectional design. Fifty-five participants with clinical knee OA were included (43 women; mean 60.9 ± 6.9 years). Dependent variables included timed stair ascent, timed stair descent, and the six minute walk test (6MWT). Independent variables included peak knee extensor strength and mean peak knee extensor power. Covariates were age, body mass index, and self-efficacy. Multiple regression analyses were run for each dependent variable with just covariates, then a second model including strength and a third model including power. R-squared values were compared between models. Power explained greater variance than strength in all models. Over and above the covariates, power explained an additional 6% of the variance in the 6MWT, increasing the r-squared value from 0.33 to 0.39 (p=0.022); 8% in the stair ascent test, increasing the r-squared value from 0.52 to 0.60 (p=0.002); and 3% in the stair descent test, increasing the r-squared value from 0.44 to 0.47 (p=0.039). The sample demonstrated very good mobility and muscle function scores and may not be indicative of those with severe knee OA. In adults with knee OA, knee extensor power was a stronger determinant of walking and stair performance when compared to knee extensor strength. Clinicians should consider these results when advising patients on exercise to maintain or improve mobility. © 2015 American Physical Therapy Association.
    Physical Therapy 02/2015; 95(7). DOI:10.2522/ptj.20140360

  • Physical Therapy 02/2015; 95(2):280-1. DOI:10.2522/ptj.2015.95.2.280