Archive for the ‘Rehabilitation’ Category

Physical Therapy for Pain Management

As America combats a devastating opioid epidemic, safe, non-opioid treatments have never been of greater need.

Physical therapy is among the safe, effective alternatives recommended by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in guidelines urging the avoidance of opioids for most pain treatment.

Whereas opioids only mask the sensation of pain, physical therapists diagnose and treat pain through movement.

Whether you or someone you care about is recovering from an injury or dealing with a chronic health problem, the physical & occupational therapists at SIH can help you resume your independence and return to your daily activities. Helping people of all ages, physical therapy is a conservative approach to managing mobility problems. Physical therapy may help you avoid surgery, reduce or eliminate pain, decrease the need for medication, prevent falls and improve balance.

Personalized Treatment Plan

Physical therapists at SIH work collaboratively with you to provide a program that meets your needs. Our approach involves education, manual therapies and exercise. Our physical therapists will help you establish goals and create a personalized plan, including activities related to strengthening, range of motion, mobility and endurance. We use unique therapies and exercise approaches that may not be available through your primary doctor.

Team Approach

Some conditions, such as heart and lung problems, as well as a spinal cord injury and stroke, require a team to provide care and may include not only physical therapists but occupational and speech therapists, doctors, nurses, social workers, psychologists and others. Our advanced experience draws on their unique backgrounds to deliver the best possible care for you.

We know injuries and chronic health conditions can have a major impact on your life. A 21-year alliance with the Shirley Ryan AbilityLab, #1 Rehabilitation Hospital by U.S. News & World Reports, allows patients to access expert care at managing your physical challenges and ultimately getting you to being as active as possible.

Talk with a physical & occupational therapist from Rehab Unlimited about safer ways to manage pain. Call 800.597.5790 to find a Rehab Unlimited location near you.

AlterG Anti-Gravity Treadmill

AlterG Anti-Gravity Treadmill is available at Rehab Unlimited- Harrisburg and Rehab Unlimited-Logan Park.

Rehab Unlimited now has two locations with the AlterG Anti-Gravity Treadmill. Logan Park and Harrisburg Rehab Unlimited locations utilize the AlterG to allow patients to walk sooner during the rehabilitation process; by dramatically reducing their weight. The AlterG is a state of the art unweighting treadmill which allows patients to reduce their body weight by up to 80% while the patient walks. The revolutionary medical rehabilitation treadmill, AlterG, promotes full, unrestricted movement, using patented NASA anti-gravity technology.

The key benefits of AlterG are:

  • Exercising on as little as 20% of total body weight minimizes joint stress and pain
  • Rehabilitation of lower extremity injuries
  • Aerobic conditioning
  • Weight loss
  • Treatment of neurological conditions
  • Training which combats the diseases of aging

Abbie Beer, PTA, at Rehab Unlimited in Harrisburg has taken five courses to advance her knowledge of the benefits of the AlterG. Abbie received her certifications for AlterG Orthopedics, AlterG and Neurologic Disorders, AlterG Geriatric, and AlterG Weight Loss. Her goal was to become more educated on the advantages of using the Anti-Gravity Treadmill for the rehabilitation process for her patients.

Who benefits from using AlterG?

Patients do need a referral to Rehab Unlimited to utilize the AlterG for the rehabilitation process. Call 800.597.5790 to learn more about Rehab Unlimited.

Upswing Recovery Care Community Reintegration Program

Community Reintegration is a new service at Upswing Recovery Care extending the continuum of services from inpatient to the community for patients at St. Joseph Hospital in Murphysboro. The early stages of rehabilitation typically focus on regaining physical mobility, self-care skills, and general cognition. Community Reintegration rehabilitation therapy is part of the continuum of care that assists individuals in applying these skills to their return to home. Upswing Recovery Care rehabilitation focuses on improving the quality of life for the specific individual.

The goal of the newly designed Community Reintegration program is to provide therapeutic interventions for patients who want to return to everyday activities, including church, visiting friends and family, going out to eat and shopping. Upswing Recovery Care focuses on helping patients return to all of the activities that are important to them.

Two recent patients at Upswing Recovery Care participated in the Community Reintegration program in November with their therapists, Ilis, Occupational Therapist, and Julie, Physical Therapist Assistant. Joyce and Daisy were roommates at Upswing Recovery Care and were progressing very well towards an independent discharge to home. With the Thanksgiving holiday soon approaching, they identified that both enjoyed preparing family meals in the past years. Daisy and Joyce worked with their therapists, to prepare for their Community Reintegration activity of a grocery shopping trip. Joyce and Daisy were able to get in and out of the SIH vehicle with education in safe technique; together with their therapists and Irene, patient care tech, went to a local grocery store. Both ladies utilized the shopping carts and Daisy used the store scooter as they shopped for Thanksgiving meals. The activity was created to improve independence, strengthen their ability to perform day-to-day tasks and increase their ease and independence with social interactions within the community.


Daisy and Joyce were discharged from Upswing Recovery Care the following day and went home to share in Thanksgiving meal preparations with their families.

Additional services available to the Upswing Recovery Care Community Reintegration Program

  • Referral to SIU’s driver assessment and training if necessary
  • Access to the SIH vehicle for day trips
  • Assist in planning, coordinating and implementing day trips

To learn more about Upswing Recovery Care visit

Saturday Morning Sports Injury Clinic

Do your kids play sports? Then you’ll be interested to know that starting August 27th, Sportsology offers a free Saturday morning sports injury clinic to help injured student-athletes for nine weeks during the fall. The Sportsology Saturday Morning Sports Injury Clinic is located at Rehab Unlimited in Carbondale. Each year, the Sportsology team donates an average of 1450 hours of service to local schools throughout southern Illinois.

Sportsology Saturday Morning Sports Injury Clinic
305 W. Jackson Street
Carbondale, IL 62901
877.656.4999, call in advance
Saturday mornings
9 AM start time

If your child or athlete receives an injury and you would like for them to be seen by a sports medicine physician and a certified athletic trainer, please call 877.656.4999 in advance. As always, if this is a serious injury seek medical attention immediately!

The injury screening is free, but diagnostic imaging, medications or medical devices (such as crutches) will be billed per your insurance requirements.

Sportsology is a collaboration between the SIU School of Medicine and Southern Illinois Healthcare Rehab Unlimited. The team of sports medicine physicians, fellows and certified athletic trainers work both on and off the field to support your athletes! Our team provides area schools including Anna-Jonesboro High School, Carbondale Community High School, Carterville Community School, Crab Orchard High School, John A. Logan College, Herrin High School and Marion High School with game coverage, on-site injury assessments, screenings and assistance with emergency athletic protocols utilizing national safety guidelines. Learn more about sportsology here

Upswing patient John Luberda’s recovery journey

Recently, John Luberda went to Herrin Hospital’s Joint Camp. After his hip surgery, Luberda needed some time to heal before returning home so he went to Upswing Recovery Care at St. Joseph Memorial Hospital.

The Upswing program provides short-term nursing and rehabilitation services. While attending, Luberda received skilled care along with physical and occupational therapy.

Setting a Goal

One of Luberda’s main goals while at Upswing Recovery Care was to independently climb 12 stairs—the number of steps to get into his home. The Upswing care team created an individualized plan to assist Luberda in achieving his goal!



He did it! After 19 days at Upswing Recovery Care following his hip surgery at Herrin Hospital’s Joint Camp, John Luberda is back at home!

In His Own Words

About the experience Luberda shared, “I appreciate all the Upswing staff. They really make you reach for your goals even when you don’t think you can make it. Thank you very much and God bless!”


Upswing Recovery Care is unique compared to most local skilled care facilities because it is located within a hospital. This quick access to a higher level of care can be especially crucial for patients if an unforeseen health issue were to arise. Learn more about Upswing Recovery Care.

Latest Therapy Tech to Assist Your Recovery

Did you know that the Acute Rehabilitation Center (ARC) at Herrin Hospital has the latest technologies and equipment to get you into therapy and on the road towards a quicker recovery?

For some patients recovering from a stroke, brain injury, hip fractures or in some cases joint replacements, their mobility may be limited. Research supports getting these patients up and moving as soon as possible to not only speed their recovery, but also to reduce their loss of muscle strength due to inactivity.

Utilizing the latest assistive devices can make a significant impact on the progress of these patients. Most recently, ARC has added three assistive devices: Moveo, Rifton TRAM and VitalStim.

  • Moveo – An exercise platform that blends tilt table standing with exercise. Patients that were previously unable to participate in rehabilitation because they were unable to support their full body weight are now able to participate in weight-bearing exercises at an earlier stage.
  • Rifton TRAM – A transfer and mobility device. It enables patients to participate in gait training, practice sit-to-stand transfers and to provide added ease for seated transfers.
  • VitalStim – An electrotherapy and biofeedback system used to help patients regain the ability to swallow. VitalStim accelerates strengthening, restores function and assists with swallow remapping in the brain.
Following Best Practices

In keeping with best practices that are followed by leading rehabilitation hospitals such as Southern Illinois Healthcare’s alliance affiliate, the Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago (RIC), ARC continues to offer these additional assistive devices.

  • Bioness – The L300 aids patients who suffer from foot drop or difficulty walking due to stroke, spinal cord or brain injury. It uses wireless communication, eliminating cumbersome wires. The H200, also wireless, rests around the hand and forearm to stimulate muscles through programmed exercises. Herrin Hospital was one of the first in the country to offer this therapy.
  • LiteGait – The unique harness design of the LiteGait allows your therapist to align your lower extremities to relearn proper walking patterns. It simultaneously provides proper posture, reduces weight bearing and eliminates concerns for balance as you walk over a treadmill or the ground.
  • SaeboFlex – Allows neurologically impaired individuals the ability to incorporate hand functionality in therapy by supporting the weakened wrist, hand and fingers. The SaeboFlex positions the wrist and fingers into an open hand position in preparation for functional activities. The user is able to grasp an object by voluntarily flexing his or her fingers. The spring system then helps in re-opening the hand to release the object.

At ARC, we work to help you achieve your goal of living the best possible life, whether that means to return to work, live on your own or continue a cherished hobby. When the need arises, we incorporate the use of these devices during your stay to help you be successful during your rehabilitation.

Talk with your physician today about a referral to the Acute Rehabilitation Center. Click here to learn more about how to qualify for ARC.

Feeling Dizzy?

Dizziness, vertigo and imbalance are just a few of the symptoms you may experience with vestibular or balance disorders. You may also experience nausea, hearing changes, anxiety, fatigue or have trouble concentrating.

There are several causes and types of vestibular disorders that can be determined by your physician. A thorough evaluation will determine the type of vestibular deficit and its effect on balance, which will lead to an appropriate course of therapy.

Do you have any of these symptoms?
  • Feeling like the room is spinning
  • Dizziness when looking up
  • Fear of falling
  • Dizziness with quick head movements
  • Having trouble focusing your eyes

If you answered “yes” to any of the above questions, then the therapy techniques offered by Rehab Unlimited experts may be able to help you.

If you are experiencing dizziness and even nausea, then you may try to overcompensate to reduce your symptoms. Over time, overcompensating could make your symptoms worse and increase the need for vestibular rehabilitation therapy (VRT). VRT includes:

  • Gaze-Stabilization Exercises:
    Adaptation exercise may be employed in order to help your brain adapt to new signaling from the affected vestibular system. Visual fixation on a target during head movement is a key gaze-stabilization exercise given to assist in this retraining.
  • Balance Retraining Exercises:
    When the vestibular system has been affected by vestibular neuritis or labyrinthitis, the nerve signaling related to balance and walking has also changed. Balance retraining involves exercises designed to improve coordination of muscular responses as well as the organization of sensory information (from eye sight and the vestibular system) for balance control.
  • Canal Repositioning Maneuvers:
    Once the blocked canal has been identified, a canal repositioning maneuvers will be used to dislodge or reposition the debris within the affected canal.

Stop the dizziness and vertigo by seeing your doctor for a vestibular rehabilitation referral and learn more about treatment options at Ten Rehab Unlimited facilities are conveniently located throughout southern Illinois.

Live Your Best Possible Life

Our Goal for YOU

Our goal at the Acute Rehabilitation Center (ARC) is to help you live your best life possible, whether you want to return to work, live on your own or continue a cherished hobby.

ARC offers an intensive therapy program that gives you the opportunity to take part in both individual and group therapy for at least three hours a day during the week.

Acute Rehabilitation Center: 800.972.8859
Individual and Group Therapy

During one-on-one therapy, you will focus on individual goals while group therapy will allow you to learn from—and be encouraged by—the progress of your fellow patients.

In addition to traditional therapies, such as walking, therapists look for creative ways to keep you excited about your therapy. For example, if you enjoy painting then it could be used to help you relearn fine motor skills.

Your Support Team

During your stay your care is based on a teamwork approach, with services offered by physical therapists, occupational therapists, speech/language pathologists, rehabilitation-certified nurses and social workers. The team is led by a physiatrist, a physician specializing in physical medicine and rehabilitation.

Beyond individual and group therapy, your care team offers specialized services including:

  • Physiatry
  • Clinical Video Swallowing Assessment & Therapy
  • Stroke Support Group
  • Prosthetics/Orthotics/li>
  • Home Safety Assessments
  • Community Reintegration
  • Family Training

A referral to the Acute Rehabilitation Center is the first step toward living your best life possible. If your doctor has not already made arrangements to do so, ask him or her to call us to begin the admission process. More information about ARC is available here.

Is Your Child’s Backpack Too Heavy?

It’s Time to Head Back to School! The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) offers the following tips and recommendations for backpack safety:

• A lightweight pack that doesn’t add a lot of weight to your child’s load (for example, even though leather packs look cool, they weigh more than traditional canvas backpacks).

• Wide, padded shoulder straps; straps that are too narrow can dig into shoulders.

• A padded back, which not only provides increased comfort, but also protects kids from being poked by sharp edges on objects (pencils, rulers, notebooks, etc.) inside the pack.

• A waist belt, which helps to distribute the weight more evenly across the body.

• Multiple compartments, which can help distribute the weight more evenly.

• Although packs on wheels (which look like small, overhead luggage bags) may be good options for students who have to lug around really heavy loads, they’re extremely difficult to pull up stairs and to roll through snow. Check with the school before buying a rolling pack; many schools don’t allow them because they can pose a tripping hazard in the hallways.

Back Pack Download full size infographic

This information is brought to you by our Sportsology team. Sportsology is the collaboration between certified athletic trainers from Southern Illinois Healthcare’s Rehab Unlimited and Sports Medicine physicians and fellows from SIU School of Medicine. For more information about our Sportsology program, please visit

Rehabilitation Available At SIH Cancer Institute

The opening of the Cancer Institute has given us a Rehab Unlimited site dedicated to treating cancer patients. Rehab Unlimited Carterville is conveniently located on-site at the SIH Cancer Institute. Our new location is now seeing patients!

Cancer Rehabilitation is Vital

Cancer rehabilitation is an important part of the cancer fighting arsenal. Rehabilitation can help improve a cancer patient’s health and ability to tolerate many side effects associated with chemotherapy, radiation therapy and surgical procedures. The cancer therapies at Rehab Unlimited are designed to help patients minimize the fatigue and impairment that often accompany oncology treatments.

Cancer rehabilitation can help patients suffering from the following issues:
  • Feeling weak or fatigued
  • Experiencing pain or stiffness
  • Numbness or tingling
  • Having trouble balancing or walking
  • Lymphedema (or swelling in the arms or legs)
  • Memory problems
  • Swallowing difficulty
  • Difficulty dressing, bathing or other daily activities

Individualized Treatment

A personalized program developed by the rehabilitation team addresses each patient’s functional limitations and concerns to help achieve the patient’s goals.

The Team

Our rehabilitation team is led by a physiatrist—a physician specializing in physical medicine and rehabilitation—and may include nurses, physical and occupational therapists, pain management specialists, speech-language pathologists, counselors and nutritionists specializing in cancer patient care.

Our cancer rehabilitation program is prepared to meet the challenges facing today’s cancer fighters and survivors by coordinating physical medicine and rehabilitation interventions to strengthen their return to full ability.

The Rehab Unlimited Carterville location can be reached at 618.985.3333 ext. 68345.