Two physical therapists at Riverwood Healthcare Center recently achieved certifications that enhance services offered to patients.
Brian Gehling, DPT, has achieved certification as a Therapeutic Pain Specialist (TPS). TPS is a true interdisciplinary pain certification that is open to various healthcare providers from therapists to physicians and other clinicians.
“The process of learning that has led me to receiving the Therapeutic Pain Specialist certification has been invaluable in my ability to thoroughly work as a team from a holistic perspective with an individual experiencing pain,” Gehling said. “Starting with a thorough subjective history, I listen to the patient’s unique experience and follow up with appropriate evidence-based tests and measures.”
Gehling adds: “A key element of pain treatment is good, evidence-based pain science education that answers four key questions for those in pain: Why do I hurt? How long will it take to feel better? What can you do for me? What can I do for myself? Getting answers to these questions can be deeply healing for those in pain. In fact, some people realize they don’t need long-term physical therapy after all, and they often manage their pain very well on their own with what they know. I am so proud of my patients who realize and achieve this kind of success.”
Gehling provides outpatient therapy at Riverwood’s Aitkin campus and also has previously achieved recognition as a Certified Integrated Manual Therapist, with specialized training in connecting the dots to find the source of a patient’s problem and treating the source through the use of manual therapy interventions.
Jonas Kyllonen, DPT, was named a board-certified Clinical specialist in Orthopaedics by the American Board of Physical Therapy Specialties of the American Physical Therapy Association. Specialist certification formally recognizes physical therapists who have demonstrated advanced clinical knowledge and skills in a specific area of physical therapy practice. To obtain board certification, candidates must submit evidence of required clinical practice in orthopedics. In addition, candidates must successfully complete a rigorous examination, demonstrating specialized knowledge and advanced clinical proficiency in a specialty area of physical therapist practice.
“Becoming a board-certified clinical specialist in orthopaedic physical therapy demonstrates a commitment to pursuing the highest level of skill with which to best serve our patients,” Kyllonen said. “As a physical therapist, I see many orthopaedic patients, both surgical and nonsurgical, who need help recovering their mobility and range of motion. I enjoy the opportunity to help others progress towards their health-related goals and to assist in reaching their optimal functional potential.”
Gehling holds a doctorate degree in physical therapy from the College of St. Scholastica, Duluth, and Kyllonen holds a doctorate degree in physical therapy from the University of Minnesota. They are two of nine physical therapists on Riverwood’s rehabilitation staff, which also includes one physical therapy assistant, two speech therapists, and four occupational therapists. Together, they bring many years of experience to helping patients recover and improve the skills needed for daily living and working, which ultimately improves quality of life.