Tilt table protocol for physical therapy

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A padded table with a footplate and three large Velcro straps, a tilt table serves as an integral part of physiotherapy by providing early mobilisation of patients with profound weakness or low blood pressure.


Physical therapists use tilt tables to provide early weight bearing experiences for patients too weak to stand on their own. Tilt tables also help patients with orthostatic hypotension--a significant drop in blood pressure that occurs when they move from a prone to a sitting position.


To use a tilt table, the patient lies on top of the table on her back. The physical therapist secures the safety straps around the patient, then slowly elevates the table, putting the patient into a standing position and monitoring her blood pressure and heart rate throughout the treatment.


Tilt table treatments can prevent osteoporosis via weight bearing, as well as ankle contractures, blood clots, pulmonary embolism and other bed rest complications for the hospitalised patient.