GARRY WATSON / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY GARRY WATSON / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Physiotherapy. A physiotherapist lifts a woman patient out of a chair using the patient's trouser belt. The patient is suffering from a physical disorder or injury which prevents her from lifting her own body weight. The physiotherapist is moving the affected parts of the patient's body to preserve joint motility, this is known as passive exercise. Physiotherapy is used to reduce joint stiffness and restore muscle strength. This is important after nerve injuries and in the treatment of diseases such as polio. The patient may also be taught to contract and relax certain muscle groups to aid recovery after (for example) a stroke.
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