Dr. Shelly Kraetz
Photo by Jason Emerson.
continued Kraetz said she often helps women “learn how to move,” how to strengthen the correct muscles safely in their bodies, how to attain and maintain flexibility. These help with issues such as pregnancy-related back pain, joint issues and posture problems; osteoporosis and osteopenia, post mastectomy pain and lymphedema (impairment of the lymphatic system). She also helps women with urinary incontinence by doing pelvic assessments and teaching patients how to strengthen their pelvic muscles.
Another specialty Kraetz offers is post-surgery orthopedic rehabilitation, especially for geriatric patients. Many of her patients are recovering from knee or hip replacement surgery, joint pains and surgery, and she helps get them back to form. She even does house calls. “Patients love house calls, especially in the middle of winter,” Kraetz said. “But I love it too. It’s great to see people at home because that’s where they fell and where they heal. It’s easier to recommend changes and educate them this way.”
But Kraetz’s work is not only in response to injuries, but also in preventative measures. The American Physical Therapy Association is now pushing for more preventative PT, such as strengthening one’s posture, sitting at a work station properly and proper typing techniques.
“We’re the posture police,” she said with a laugh. “People are more in-tune with their bodies nowadays, especially younger people, but the hardest thing about therapy is the behavior change.”
Kratez’s office is small, with one exam room and one main therapy room, but already it is busy and looking to expand. The office sits on one-and-a-half acres of land that would accommodate additions and improvements to the office building. She recently contracted with a certified message therapist, Nicolette B. Hai, of Hai Energy Massage, who will work out of one of the rooms in the building, and Kraetz hired an office manager, Laurie Chiaccio, to help with the business administration.