Local physical therapy clinic working to treat post-COVID issues

Published: Mar. 2, 2021 at 9:26 AM CST
Email This Link
Share on Pinterest
Share on LinkedIn

MADISON, Ala. (WAFF) - Headaches, shortness of breath and even problems balancing are all issues some COVID-19 survivors deal with everyday after getting over the virus.

Now, Results Physiotherapy, a physical therapy clinic with several offices in North Alabama, is developing a program to help treat people dealing with these COVID after effects.

“As soon as this came out that people were struggling when they left the hospitals we said, ‘We’ve got to do something about this,’ and we started researching,” Hannah Kolomiets said.

Kolomiets began doing looking into the after effects of the virus back in April and has now developed an 8 week physical therapy program for people dealing with headaches, fatigue and more.

“It’s still very new and just getting people access to it is going to be the key,” she said.

She’s hoping to get the word out about the treatment and the success they’re having so more people struggling can get help.

“We’ve had plenty of patients that have come through our program that are doing a lot better,” Kolomiets said. “They’re back to work, they’re back to dealing with their kids and that kind of stuff and that’s kind of the joy of our job is getting people back to where they want to be.”

So far, Results Physiotherapy has worked with people from 13 to 104. The 104-year-old in the program is Major Wooten. He’s a World War II veteran who was released from Madison Hospital back in December, 2020 after beating COVID-19.

“It was a setback for me in the hospital, it took a while to get back,” Wooten said.

He’s the third member of his family to come to Results Physiotherapy after getting over COVID. Wooten works with his physical therapist on specific exercise to help him get back to where he used to be.

“I’m trying to get my strength back,” he said.

Wooten is still dealing with shortness of breath and issues with his balance but has gotten better as the program has gone on.

“Most common are the headaches, shortness of breath and fatigue,” Kolomiets said.

In younger people, she said the chronic headaches are the most common issue.

“People complain about headaches almost daily,” Kolomiets said. “3 months, 6 months after they’ve had COVID. They could’ve had COVID back in the Summer and they’re still dealing with it.”

Kolomiets said she focuses in on the neck when people are struggling with headaches because muscles in the neck can trigger headaches.

“Biggest thing is looking at joint mobility, muscle mobility and the tightness in those muscles,” she said. “If there is a joint that’s not moving it’s going to affect how everything happens.”

Kolomiets said if patients had to be on a ventilator for COVID treatment, or even just in the hospital, it can lead to neck issues.

“They’ve been stuck in a hospital ventilated, and they’re not moving, they’re not doing their normal activity,” she said. “They’ve had a literal tube shoved down their throat and that can lead to a whole lot of neck problems.”

The 8 week post COVID treatment program Kolomiets developed is very fluid, she said. It can be tailored to what each person is dealing with.

“You might see some more hands on mobility like getting a joint moving in their thoracic spine to help their ribs move and then sometimes it’s going to be as simple as we’re going to get them on a bicycle and we’re going to watch their oxygen levels and their heart rate levels while they are exercising,” she said.

Kolomiets said it’s important right now to let people, who still might not be back to how they used to be before COVID, know this treatment is out there.

She said she expects post COVID physical therapy to be a norm in the industry soon enough.

Copyright 2021 WAFF. All rights reserved.