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Integration of Imaging into Physical Therapy Evaluation

This course, based on patient cases from physical therapists working in military and civilian outpatient direct access settings, will focus on clinical decision making during the evaluative process. Patient cases will be framed within the context of these questions: At what point did the physical therapist decide imaging was needed to complete the diagnostic picture? What guidelines were or were not used to direct the choice of imaging? How and when did the physical therapist communicate with the physician to optimize management of the patient's care? This retrospective overview of successful integration of imaging into physical therapy evaluation will illustrate essential interprofessional collaboration, a necessity for realizing the vision of patient-centered care. 



Lynn McKinnis, PT, DPT  Dr. McKinnis is a staff physical therapist at Concordia Visiting Nurses in Butler, PA, an adjunct professor in the Physical Therapy Dept at St. Francis University in Loretto, Pennsylvania, and a Faculty Affiliate at the University of Montana and University of South Florida.

Lynn is known for her work in the field of diagnostic imaging as it relates to the physical therapy profession. In 1997 she authored Fundamentals of Orthopedic Radiology, the first imaging textbook written by and for physical therapists. Currently, Fundamentals of Musculoskeletal Imaging is in its fourth edition, translated into several other languages, and used by the majority of DPT curriculums in the USA. She collaborated with a radiologist for a new text, Musculoskeletal Imaging Handbook: A Guide for the Primary Practitioner, written for all primary access clinicians, including physician assistants and nurse practitioners.

She has lectured across the USA, in many tDPT programs, and has presented numerous continuing educational courses at state and national APTA and AOTA conferences.

Lynn became Pennsylvania's first Orthopedic Clinical Specialist in 1989, and twenty years later received the APTA's Outstanding Contribution to the Professional Literature Award for her publications on diagnostic imaging for physical therapists.

Duquesne University

John G. Rangos Sr., School of Health Sciences
Room 141
Saturday, December 2, 2017
8:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.

Contact Hours:

Pennsylvania State Board of Physical Therapy - Approved for 7.0 Direct Access Contact Hours (CEUs); 0.5 General Contact Hours

Ohio State Board of Physical Therapy - Submitted; Pending

West Virginia State Board of Physical Therapy - Submitted; Pending


7:30 - 8:00

  • Registration and Continental Breakfast

8:00 - 9:00

  • Understanding the capacity of imaging study to define different pathologies

9:00 - 10:00

  • Overview of available clinical decision tools to choose the right imaging study: ACR Appropriateness Criteria, Clinical Decision Rules & Diagnostic Imaging Pathways

10:00 - 10:15

  • Break

10:15 - 12:15

  • Cases involving the Spine using the following format:
Patient Chief Complaint
Evaluation Findings
Differential Diagnosis
Final Diagnosis
Review Decision Factors
Guidelines Utilized
Highlights of Imaging Report, Surgical Decisions, Physician Interaction

12:15 - 1:15 

  • Lunch (on own)

1:15 - 2:30 

  • Cases involving the Lower Extremity

2:30 - 2:45

  • Break

2:45 - 3:30

  • Continued cases of the Lower Extremity

3:30 - 5:00

  • Cases involving the Upper Extremity

Learning Objectives:

Upon completion of this course, participants will be able to:

  • Recognize red flags in the patient history, evaluation, or mechanism of injury that may indicate a referral to imaging;
  • Identify atypical responses to treatment or an altered patient presentation within the course of treatment that may indicate a need for referral to imaging;
  • Be cognizant of available current clinical decision rules, clinical guidelines, ACR Appropriateness Criteria, and other evidence based resources to direct the choice of imaging in each clinical situation;
  • Communicate effectively with other members of the healthcare team in discussing imaging, including imaging orders and results.


$175 - If you are an Alum of Duquesne; OR have served as a Clinical Instructor or Coordinator of Clinical Education for our Physical Therapy students

Registration Deadline: November 17, 2017
No refunds after November 17, 2017

Contact & Registration:
Make checks payable to 'Duquesne University' and mail to:
Department of Physical Therapy
Duquesne University
600 Forbes Avenue
Pittsburgh, PA 15282

Register online

Queries: martinr280@duq.edu

 The course is on the 1st floor of the Rangos School of Health Sciences; Park in Forbes Avenue Garage.

Handouts - Part 1           Handouts - Part 2