Primary Care for the Physical Therapist: Examination and Triage.
Article Type: Book review
Subject: Books (Book reviews)
Author: O'Brien, Daniel
Pub Date: 03/01/2011
Publication: Name: New Zealand Journal of Physiotherapy Publisher: New Zealand Society of Physiotherapists Audience: Academic Format: Magazine/Journal Subject: Health Copyright: COPYRIGHT 2011 New Zealand Society of Physiotherapists ISSN: 0303-7193
Issue: Date: March, 2011 Source Volume: 39 Source Issue: 1
Topic: NamedWork: Primary Care for the Physical Therapist: Examination and Triage (Nonfiction work)
Persons: Reviewee: Boissonnault, William
Accession Number: 263880341
Full Text: Primary Care for the Physical Therapist: Examination and Triage. (2nd Edn) 2011

William Boissonnault (eds). Elsevier, St Louis, Missouri, USA. ISBN Number: 978-1-4160-6105-2 Hardcover with online resources (418 pages). RRP: AU$115.00 Available from Elsevier Australia, http://

This book is written as a resource for physiotherapists (Physical Therapist) working in the primary care setting (community/ private practice). However, the book would also be a great resource for hospital-based physiotherapists. As the author comes from a musculoskeletal background, the book is somewhat biased towards musculoskeletal physiotherapists. Despite this, any physiotherapist could take a lot from the book. The information contained within this text would be useful to clinicians at a variety of different skill levels; from new graduates (Chapter 5: Patient Interview: Science behind the Art) to the experienced clinician (Chapter 4: Pharmacological Considerations for the Physical Therapist).

The book has been divided into three sections: Foundations, Examination and Evaluation, and Special Populations, and thoroughly covers the whole clinical assessment process. The 'Foundations' section addresses areas such as models of physical therapy (physiotherapy) delivery, evidence based medicine, cultural competence, pharmacology and interviewing skills. The 'Examination /Evaluation' section looks at the clinical screening and assessment of patients including the evaluation of diagnostic imaging and laboratory tests. The third and final section addresses population specific assessment and concludes with a very valuable 'Do Not Want To Miss List'.

The information contained within the book is up-to-date and in most places highly relevant to clinical practice in New Zealand. The book contains a large number of contributors, including a few well published, and highly experienced physiotherapists such as Julie Fritz, Mathew Garber, and Gail Deyle.

Despite some of the more challenging content (in particular, the pharmacology section) the book is well written, reads well and flows nicely. The book is arranged in a logical manner and as per the author's suggestion, readers should read the first two sections start to finish, as a number of the earlier chapters provide context for the succeeding chapters. Readers can then return to specific chapters for reference.

The book has a number of online resources that can be accessed by registering at (this is free) with cases studies, power points for teaching, video demonstrations and further references. Unfortunately the content was being updated at the time of the review and therefore inaccessible for this review.

In summary, this book will be a great resource for postgraduate physiotherapy students as there is a wealth of knowledge in the book that would help to sharpen clinical diagnostic skills. Furthermore, this book would benefit anyone who is teaching in the field of clinical examination in physiotherapy and would be valuable as a reference text in any private practice or physiotherapy department.

Daniel O'Brien, MHSc, PGDip, BHSc

Clinical Educator (Physiotherapy), Akoranga Integrated Health

Clinic, North Shore Campus, AUT University, Auckland
Gale Copyright: Copyright 2011 Gale, Cengage Learning. All rights reserved.