Over Pain Management Alternatives
In Recognition of National Physical Therapy Month, GAP-FLEX Joins the Fight Against Opioid Abuse In the U.S. by Supporting the #ChoosePT Campaign
SAN ANTONIO—October 19, 2018. October is National Physical Therapy Month, and the medical device company GAP-FLEX® — maker of the revolutionary GAP-FLEX device for recovery from knee replacement surgery, ACL/MCL and other types of range-of-motion procedures – today announced it has joined the #ChoosePT Opioid Awareness Campaign in support of this year’s theme, “Tackling Opioid Abuse in the U.S.”
“Our goal is to ensure patients recovery fully, within the shortest amount of time possible, and guide them away from potentially harmful treatment options such as opioids,” said GAP-FLEX CEO Ashley Hixon. “The innovative GAP-FLEX System accelerates recovery and rehabilitation, and as we see our system used more widely, I think we are going to see a shift away from those habit-forming opioids for treatment of pain.”
GAP-FLEX was designed in 2014 after a physical therapist treated thousands of patients who had undergone total knee replacements and observed that many of them were not complying with their surgeons’ instructions to use continuous passive motion (CPM) devices to assist with rehabilitation. The CPM was then the standard for post-operative, at-home care. Although most orthopedic surgeons agree that effective physical therapy is a key to recovering quickly and fully from knee replacement surgery, many patients object to even improved PT programs and find narcotic drugs for pain management more appealing. Too often, long-term use of opioids leads to addiction. Regardless, pain medications are no substitute for physical therapy.
When used in conjunction with an effective, targeted physical therapy program, the GAP-FLEX System provides a faster, more comfortable method than the CPM for patient recovery, helping them avoid the long-term use of addictive opioids for pain. GAP-FLEX uses a brilliantly simple platform: gravity. A patient simply drapes their knee over the GAP-FLEX device for six minutes, walks for two minutes and uses the GAP-FLEX extension block for 10 minutes – and repeats this activity series six times daily. In total, the GAP-FLEX System requires a commitment of 96 minutes per day, as compared with about 420 minutes per day required by the CPM. As a result, surgeons and physical therapists are seeing improved patient compliance, leading to faster, more complete recoveries and decreased use of pain medications.
The GAP-FLEX gravity flexion method is ideal for almost anyone recovering from knee replacement, ACL/MCL or other range-of-motion surgeries, but it is especially suited for use by young and elderly patients. With other post-operative treatment methods, physical therapists report young patients’ busy schedules make it difficult for them to maintain treatment commitments, and older adults fail to comply because they cannot withstand long periods of exertion. GAP-FLEX eliminates both of these objections.
National Physical Therapy Month is an opportunity for surgeons and physical therapists alike to raise knee surgery patients’ awareness of available recovery options that do not include the use of opioids or other harmful methods of pain management. Physical therapy is a safer alternative to manage post-operative pain, and GAP-FLEX greatly improves this alternative.
The GAP-FLEX team will be an exhibitor at the Texas Physical Therapy Association Annual Conference October 25-27 at the Henry B. González Convention Center in San Antonio to share the benefits of combining post-operative physical therapy with use of the GAP-FLEX System.
“We are well on our way to becoming the chosen recovery method for patients recovering from knee surgery, ACL/MCL and other types of range-of-motion procedures,” said Hixon. “By familiarizing physicians, therapists and patients with the GAP-FLEX, we can also help avoid opioid use and addiction.”
GAP-FLEX is a medical device company with offices in San Antonio and Boerne, Texas. A physical therapist designed the GAP-FLEX device in 2014 after treating thousands of patients with total knee replacements and observing the patient compliance difficulties associated with the continuous passive motion (CPM) device, long the standard in post-operative physical therapy for patients recovering from knee surgery, ACL/MCL and other types of range-of-motion procedures. A driving passion to devise a simpler, more effective method of treatment led to the idea of gravity-assisted flexion and development of the GAP-FLEX. Today, GAP-FLEX is managed by a team of experienced medical device entrepreneurs and orthopedic surgeon key opinion leaders who stand behind the device’s simply brilliant platform. For more information, visit https://www.gap-flex.com.