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The Department of Physical and Occupational Therapy provides the latest services to children throughout the region from birth through adolescence. Our pediatric physical therapists and occupational therapists provide evaluation, treatment, consultation, and follow-up care for inpatients and outpatients.

Staff members specialize in treating pediatric patients' unique physiology, social, and emotional needs. Therapists utilize the latest technology and maintain current knowledge by attending and hosting annual training courses.

We provide specialized pediatric therapy services supported by an active research program. This approach ensures every child is receiving the latest, best available services to help reach their highest potential and improve quality of life. Our team provides advanced care for a vast range of conditions, from burns and muscle deficiencies to therapeutic support for children with autism and Down Syndrome.

What to expect at your appointment

We have several resources that can help you and your child prepare for your visit, including tours of all our facilities. 

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Clinical Services

Physical and occupational therapists are an integral part of the multidisciplinary team in several clinics at Children's Mercy. Therapists provide evaluation services and work closely with the care team throughout the course of treatment. Clinics include: Autism Clinic, Brachial Plexus Clinic, Burn Clinic, Cleft Palate Clinic, Down Syndrome Clinic, Hand Clinic, Hemophilia Clinic, Nerve and Muscle Clinic, Pediatric Amputee Clinic, Rheumatology Clinic, Seating Clinic, Spinal Defects Clinic and Tone Management Clinic.

Aquatic Therapy

Aquatic therapy can be used to treat a variety of diagnoses from cerebral palsy to sports injuries. Benefits include decreased pain and stiffness, improved relaxation and freedom of movement in preparation for land-based activities. This service is available at Children's Mercy Adele Hall Campus.

Developmental Therapy

Developmental therapy identifies areas of concern arising from physiological, neurological, or environmental factors and then helps to promote the child's acquisition of skills for improved play leading to improved quality of life at home and in the community.

Splinting

Our therapists provide a variety of splints and orthotics to assist in maintaining appropriate joint alignment during functional activities, including ambulation.

Casting

Our therapists may use casting to assist with control of increased muscle tone or improving a child's range of motion. Casting may also be used for creating an orthotic device.

Seating and Adaptive Equipment

Our skilled therapists are able to provide evaluations, education, and fitting services for adaptive equipment and seating.

Burn Treatment

Our therapists help children recover from burn injuries through exercise, positioning, splinting, casting, ambulation, and fitting with pressure garments in order to aid in scar management for maximizing healing and functional use of the affected area.

Feeding and Videofluoroscopic Swallow Studies (VFSS)

Feeding therapy addresses oral motor and oral sensory processing skills which may affect a child's ability to safely take in food and liquids by mouth. Our occupational therapists assist in completion of VFSS. These studies help evaluate oral motor skills in children with feeding and swallowing issues. Common diagnoses include children with cerebral palsy, Down Syndrome, and other genetic syndromes; premature infants, and children with brain injuries.

Sensory Integration

Sensory integrative therapy improves motor coordination, body awareness and eye/hand coordination. Some children have no other condition other than difficulty with sensory integration while sensory processing dysfunction can be found in children with some learning disabilities, autism spectrum disorders, and head injuries.

Manual Therapy

Therapists use manual therapy techniques to apply techniques offering opportunity for positive change of anatomical structures. Positive change in structure results in positive change in function.

Sports Rehabilitation

We provide services and guidance to children and adolescents with sports injuries or who have undergone orthopedic surgeries in order to improve and return to optimal functioning. Aquatic sports rehabilitation services available at the Village West location.

Vestibular Therapy

Vestibular therapy uses specific exercises for the head, body, and eyes to retrain the brain and improve balance, reaction time, and coordination. Common diagnoses treated include children with concussion or mild traumatic brain injuries, dizziness, or even torticollis.

VitalStim Therapy

VitalStim therapy is a specialized form of neuromuscular electrical stimulation (NMES) specifically designed to treat dysphagia or swallowing dysfunction. It is a non-invasive external electrical stimulation therapy that re-educates the throat muscles needed for swallowing. VitalStim therapy is performed by a therapist that is certified in its use.

Functional Electrical Stimulation

Functional electrical stimulation (FES) is a well-established rehabilitation technique that uses pulses of electrical current to stimulate nerves in the arms and legs resulting in muscle contractions and patterned muscle activity. The FES bike creates patterned movements in the arms, legs, trunk enabling muscles to work and perform activities even though the muscles may be weak or paralyzed through neurological disease or injury. Benefits generally include reversal of muscle atrophy; improved local blood circulation; increased range of motion and reduced muscle spasms.

Interactive Metronome

Interactive metronome (IM) is a therapeutic assessment and training program that improves attention, concentration, motor planning, and sequencing. Improvements in these areas result in stronger motor control and coordination, enhanced balance and gait, and improved language and cognition.

Conditions

  • Amputations

  • Autism Spectrum Disorders

  • Balance dysfunction

  • Brachial plexus injuries

  • Burns

  • Cardiopulmonary dysfunction

  • Cerebral palsy

  • Conditions requiring the use of special treatment modalities for pain control

  • Congenital/acquired amputations

  • Cystic fibrosis

  • Developmental delay disorders

  • Down syndrome

  • Feeding disorders

  • Gait disorders

  • Hand injuries

  • Hemophilia

  • Juvenile arthritis

  • Muscular dystrophy

  • Neuromuscular conditions

  • Orthopedic and sports injuries

  • Sensory processing/integrative disorders

  • Spina bifida

  • Spinal defect/spinal cord injury

  • Torticollis

  • Traumatic brain injuries

Contact the Physical and Occupational Therapy Team


Children's Mercy Adele Hall Campus
(816) 234-3380

Children's Mercy College Boulevard 
(913)696-5010

Children's Mercy Northland
(816) 413-2500

Children's Mercy Blue Valley
(913) 717-4700

Children's Mercy Sports Medicine Center at Villiage West
(913) 264-3000

Questions about financial coverage?

Financial counselors may be able to help families find programs to help cover the cost of medical services.