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Missouri Physical Therapy Scope of Practice

How is physical therapy defined in Missouri?

"Practice of physical therapy" - the examination, treatment and instruction of human beings to assess, prevent, correct, alleviate and limit physical disability, movement dysfunction, bodily malfunction and pain from injury, disease and any other bodily condition, such term includes, but is not limited to, the administration, interpretation and evaluation of physical therapy tests and measurements of bodily functions and structures.

What is included in the practice of physical therapy?

Physical therapy includes the planning, administration, evaluation and modification of treatment and instruction, including the use of physical measures, activities and devices, for preventive and therapeutic purposes; and the provision of consultative, educational, research and other advisory services for the purpose of reducing the incidence and severity of physical disability, movement dysfunction, bodily malfunction and pain.

PTs may perform electromyography and nerve conduction tests but may not interpret the results of the electromyography or nerve conduction test.

What is specifically excluded from the practice?

Physical therapy does not include the use of surgery or obstetrics or the administration of x-radiation, radioactive substance, diagnostic x-ray, diagnostic laboratory electrocautery, electrosurgery or invasive tests or the prescribing of any drug or medicine or the administration or dispensing of any drug or medicine other than a topical agent administered or dispensed upon the direction of a physician.  

Are there any special trainings or requirements?



Mo. Rev. Stat. § 334.500

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