Nursing Education
Nursing Education Opportunities in Mississippi - 2006  <more..>
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Physical Therapist


Physical therapists help patients recover from illnesses and injuries. After evaluating the physicians’ referral and the patients’ medical records, they plan, administer and conduct physical therapy treatment for patients in order to restore muscle function, relieve pain, and prevent disability following disease, injury, or loss of body parts. Physical therapists treatment program may include exercise, electrical stimulation and ultrasound message therapy. They also instruct and motivate patients in isometric and ambulatory exercises. They evaluate the effects of each treatment and adjust the treatment regiment to achieve maximum benefits. Physical therapy is used to improve the patients' endurance, coordination, increase strength, decrease pain, and prevent further injury.
They also work with the patients to overcome the emotional and physical barriers that may hinder recovery.

Work Environment:

Most physical therapists work in hospitals, rehabilitation centers, clinics, physician offices, nursing homes, home health agencies, adult day care programs, schools, wellness and community centers, and in private industry.

High School Preparation:

Students who want to become physical therapists should take the most challenging high school courses including biology, chemistry, medical assisting, algebra, trigonometry, health occupations /medical professions education, computer skills, humanities, and geometry.

College Requirements:

To become a physical therapist, an individual must complete a four-year degree, graduate from an accredited school of physical therapy and pass an examination. Students interested in physical therapy should contact schools for information on admission and course of study.

For educational institutions in Mississippi
offering this course of study click here.

Career Outlook:

This increase in the demand for physical therapists is due to the aging baby boomer generation. As more of this generation moves into late middle age or old age, they are more susceptible to diseases such as arthritis, stroke, heart disease, and other conditions common in older people. Many of these conditions include physical therapy as a recovery or treatment option. Also, because the nation's population is increasing its participation in sports and physical activities, more physical therapists will be needed to treat and help prevent knee, leg, back, shoulder and other musculo-skeletal injuries.


Average Annual Salary

Salary Range
$51,900 to $82,700

Professional Organizations:

American Physical Therapy Association
1111 North Fairfax Street
Alexandria, VA 22314-1488
Phone: (800) 999-2782
Phone: (703) 684-2782
Fax: (703) 684-7343

MS Physical Therapy Association
921 North Congress Street
Jackson, MS 39202-2554
Phone: (601) 354-3629
Fax: (601) 355-1506

Download our Physical Therapy brochure here.
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