In this study, all patients of the Ambulance for Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, the Department of Surgery and Dentistry and Ophthalmology at the Veterinary University of Vienna were recorded in the time period from 2001 to 2011.
From the universitys TIS- System, data was collected which revealed information of the patient himself, his disease, his pre-treatment and his referral, as well as which therapy method he received, and evaluated afterwards.
The goal was to determine whether the amount of patients has changed in the last ten years and if there was an increase of patients or not. Therefore, a differentiation between patients which were referred by another vet and those who came on their own was made, as well as a differentiation between the different types of pre-treatment (conservative, surgically or none) was made. There also was the presumption that there were more diseases of the elbow joint then of the hip in the last ten years.
The presumtion of having more disease of the elbow joint than of the hip could not be confirmed in this study, as diseases of the hip are still wider spread. However, diseases of the elbow joint showed a stronger increase compared to the diseases of the hip.
Data evaluation for the time between 2001 to 2011 showed a significant increase in the amount of patients, as well as in the surgical pre-treatment. This confirms that vPMR is gaining more and more popularity over the years and has provided important value in postoperative rehabilitation. Furthermore, the amount of patients without transferral has also increased, which shows us, that vPMR has also become popular among the general public.
Main indications for physical treatment proved to be (degenerative) joint diseases as well as diseases of the spine.
Therefore vPMR is not only of great help in the postoperative rehabilitation, but also in the treatment of chronic diseases, especially when there are no further satisfying results attained through surgical or drug treatment.
The advantage of vPMR, besides pain management, is that it helps to obtain and promote mobility.
Which disease is treated with which therapy method is always determined individually for each patient, taking into consideration his health and physical ability. Often, there is a combination between different therapy methods. The evaluation of the data showed an increased frequency in the application of acupuncture, hydrotherapy and electrotherapy. All three aforementioned methods are simple but effective in their application, and show great acceptance by the patient as well as by their owners. Therefore, these three methods are used the most often. This study shows that vPMR is gaining popularity and that it has become indispensable in veterinary medicine, whether in postoperative rehabilitation or the treatment of degenerative, painful or chronic diseases.