Research Article  |   August 2018
Occupational Therapists’ Role in Perinatal Care: A Health Promotion Approach
Author Affiliations
  • Julie Grobbelaar Fernandes, OTD, OT/L, CHT, is Senior Occupational Therapist, New York University Langone Orthopedic Center, New York, NY; julie.fernandes@nyumc.org
Article Information
Hand and Upper Extremity / Health and Wellness / Musculoskeletal Impairments / Columns: The Issue Is . . .
Research Article   |   August 2018
Occupational Therapists’ Role in Perinatal Care: A Health Promotion Approach
American Journal of Occupational Therapy, August 2018, Vol. 72, 7205347010p1-7205347010p4. doi:10.5014/ajot.2018.028126
American Journal of Occupational Therapy, August 2018, Vol. 72, 7205347010p1-7205347010p4. doi:10.5014/ajot.2018.028126
Abstract

This article establishes and examines occupational therapists’ role in perinatal care and proposes a health promotion approach for new and expectant mothers. The author demonstrates the importance of maintaining meaningful occupational engagement during this critical life stage by incorporating evidence from orthopedic, rehabilitation, and hand therapy research. New and expectant mothers are at high risk for upper extremity (UE) conditions such as carpal tunnel syndrome, De Quervain’s tenosynovitis, and tendinosis of the UE. Occupational therapists with basic knowledge of hand therapy are well prepared to manage these conditions conservatively. An occupation-based model and framework are presented to ensure a holistic view of the target population. Topics pertinent to this population include postural techniques, repetitive tasks, patient education, and strengthening related to the perinatal period.