06:38 PM Journal of Orthopaedic & Sports Physical Therapy® Downloaded from www.jospt.org at on October 9, 2013. For personal use only. No other uses without permission
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F eelings or thoughts of depression may be associated with a muscle or joint injury. When pain and depressive symptoms occur together, they can produce longlasting problems. It can be difficult to know if these thoughts and feelings are caused by the pain or some other issue. Physical therapists focus on treating musculoskeletal problems; however, for some patients, depressed feelings may ease with treatment designed to decrease pain and improve function. Other patients may require specialized treatment for symptoms of depression in addition to physical therapy. This is especially true when depressed thoughts and feelings persist, pain has not resolved, and return to work has not been achieved. A study published in the November 2012 issue of JOSPT evaluated the change in feelings or thoughts of depression during physical therapy and how it relates to a person’s work status 1 year later.