Reciprocal Influence of Mobility and Speech-Language: Advancing Physical Therapy and Speech Therapy Cotreatment and Collaboration for Adults with Neurologic Conditions

Phys Ther. 2021 Aug 14:pzab196. doi: 10.1093/ptj/pzab196. Online ahead of print.


Mobility and speech-language impairments and limitations in adults with neurologic conditions manifest not in isolated anatomical components but instead in the individual-environment system and are task-dependent. Optimization of function thus requires interprofessional care to promote participation in meaningful life areas within appropriate task and environmental contexts. Cotreatment guidelines (ie, the concurrent intervention of disciplines) were established by the physical therapy, occupational therapy, and speech-language and hearing professional organizations nearly 2 decades ago to facilitate seamless interprofessional care. Despite this, cotreatment between physical therapy and speech therapy remains limited. The purpose of this perspective paper is to encourage physical therapists and speech-language pathologists to increase interprofessional collaboration through cotreatment in the management of adults with neurologic conditions. Evidence from pediatrics and the basic motor control literature points toward reciprocal interactions between speech-language and mobility. We provide recommendations for clinical practice with an emphasis on the gains each discipline can provide the other. The perspective is rooted in the International Classification of Functioning, Disability and Health (ICF) model and ecological theory.

PMID:34403483 | DOI:10.1093/ptj/pzab196

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