Differential Diagnosis

Author / Instructor: Chad Cook PT, Ph.D., M.B.A., FAAOMPT
Profession: Physical Therapist Assistants, Physical Therapists
Jurisdiction: Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, District of Columbia, Florida, Georgia, Guam, Hawaii, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Puerto Rico, Rhode Island, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Vermont, Virgin Islands (U.S.), Virginia, Washington, West Virginia, Wisconsin, Wyoming
Course Number: 1518
CEU Hours: 7.5
Course Method: Online
Provider: Educata
Amount: $225
Active: Yes

This course is comprised of the lectures below.

Foundational Clinical Decision Making

Differential diagnosis is a term used to describe the process of improving the probability of a correct diagnosis and an appropriate application of treatment. Selected epidemiological concepts (e.g., sensitivity, specificity and likelihood ratios) allow the clinician to target the most effective tests and measures to further improve probability.

Goals & Objectives:

Following your active participation in this course, you will be able to:

  1. Discuss the elements necessary for differential diagnosis;
  2. Compare and contrast diseases and syndromes;
  3. Understand the components of clinical gestalt and recognize the limitations of this reasoning method;
  4. Outline and identify internal biases associated with clinical decision making;
  5. Analyze the weaknesses of all clinical tests and measures;
  6. Develop a working vocabulary of the language of diagnostic accuracy;
  7. Recognize and apply tips for improving pre-test probability;
  8. Understand the role of order in an examination.

Spot Diagnosis or Triage

This course outlines the most effective test and measures with the highest sensitivity and the lowest negative likelihood ratios that are appropriate for ruling out conditions early in the examination. Learning the tests that allow the ruling out of red flags early in the examination gives clinicians the confidence that their examination and treatment programs are appropriate for the given patient population.

Goals & Objectives:

Following your active participation in this course, you will be able to:

  1. Define triage and the spot diagnosis;
  2. Compare and contrast spot diagnosis and screening;
  3. Recognize the necessary diagnostic accuracy elements of spot diagnosis;
  4. Recognize the strengths and weaknesses of current triage tools used for the upper and lower quarter;
  5. Identify and apply knowledge gained during recognition of conditions outside our scope of care.

Prerequisites:
None mandatory; strongly recommended, however: Foundational Clinical Decision Making

Differential Diagnosis of the Upper Quarter

Once a patient’s condition is identified as appropriate for conservative care, differential diagnosis allows specification of the origin of symptoms and a diagnosis of the condition. Differential diagnosis of the upper quarter involves regional differentiation, as well as identification of the tests and measures with the most diagnostic power, based on best available evidence, in the upper quarter (upper extremities and upper axial skeleton).

Goals & Objectives:

Following your active participation in this course, you will be able to:

  1. Review and discuss essential parameters for differential diagnosis;
  2. Identify and utilize the best tests for the shoulder, cervical spine, thoracic spine, elbow and wrist/hand that are designed to rule out conditions;
  3. Identify and utilize the best tests for the shoulder, cervical spine, thoracic spine, elbow and wrist/hand that are designed to rule in conditions;
  4. Identify and utilize the best clusters of findings that are designed to rule in conditions.

Prerequisites:
None mandatory; strongly recommended, however: Foundational Clinical Decision Making

Differential Diagnosis of the Lower Quarter

Once a patient’s condition is identified as appropriate for conservative care, differential diagnosis allows specification of the origin of symptoms and a diagnosis of the condition. Differential diagnosis of the lower quarter involves regional differentiation, as well as identification of the tests and measures with the most diagnostic power, based on best available evidence, in the lower quarter (lower extremities and lower axial skeleton/pelvis).

Goals & Objectives:

Following your active participation in this course, you will be able to:

  1. Review and discuss essential parameters for differential diagnosis;
  2. Identify and utilize the best tests for the lumbar spine, pelvis, hip, knee and ankle/foot that are designed to rule out conditions;
  3. Identify and utilize the best tests for the lumbar spine, pelvis, hip, knee and ankle/foot that are designed to rule in conditions;
  4. Identify and utilize the best clusters of findings that are designed to rule in conditions.

Prerequisites:
None mandatory: strongly recommended, however: Foundational Clinical Decision Making

Continuing education credits

This course is acceptable for credit in most states for PTs and PTAs.
 

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