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Published on April 19, 2006

Certified Hand Therapist at Valley West Community Hospital

April 19, 2006

Occupational Therapists at Valley West

Lynette Rajterowski (left) and
Wendy Emma (right) also set up
a model computer work station
and keyboard to discuss
ergonomics for safe and
productive computer use.

Carpal Tunnel Syndrome, wrist and hand fractures, Tennis Elbow, arthritis, shoulder pain, tendon lacerations. What do all of these have in common? These are just a few of the common diagnoses that a Certified Hand Therapist such as Lynette Rajterowski of VWCH, treats.

“Hand therapy is the art and science of rehabilitation of the upper quarter of the human body. Hand therapy is a merging of occupational therapy and physical therapy theory and practice that combines comprehensive knowledge of the upper quarter, body function and activity. Using specialized skills in assessment and treatment, hand therapists promote the goals of prevention of dysfunction, restoration of function, and/or reversal of the progression of pathology in order to enhance participation in life situations for individual with upper quarter disease or injury,” according to the Hand Therapy Certification Commission. (

A Certified Hand Therapist (CHT) is an Occupational Therapist or Physical Therapist that has met specific requirements including a minimum of 4000 hours or more of direct practice in the area of hand therapy and passes a comprehensive test of advanced clinical skills and theory in upper quadrant rehabilitation. The CHT credential is recognized as a benchmark of excellence in advanced specialty credentialing in health care. Valley West Community Hospital has this valuable service available in the Occupational Therapy Department, and it is close to home!

People value their hands. They are the instruments of purpose and meaning to much of their life. They help us to care for ourselves, provide a means to make a livelihood, allow us to participate in meaningful leisure activities and help us to reach out and care for others. Any loss of function through illness or injury can have a devastating effect for the person and those around him/her. A CHT can help maximize recovery through evaluation and individualized treatment planning. A physician’s referral is needed to initiate treatment.

For more information, or to make your appointment, close to home, contact Lynette Rajterowski, OTR/L CHT at VWCH, 815-786-8550.

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