The ABMS Member Boards - Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation

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American Board of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation
3015 Allegro Park Lane, SW
Rochester, MN 55902
(507) 282-1776

Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation

A specialist in Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, also called a Physiatrist, evaluates and treats patients with physical and/or cognitive impairments and disabilities that result from musculoskeletal conditions (such as neck or back pain, sports or work injuries), neurological conditions (such as stroke, brain injury, or spinal cord injury), or other medical conditions. Physiatrists have expertise in therapeutic exercise, medications, and injections for management of pain and spasticity; electrodiagnosis; prostheses (artificial limbs); orthoses (braces); and other equipment to assist daily activities, and coordinate treatment to help patients improve their physical, psychological, social, and vocational function.

Specialty training required prior to board certification: Four years plus one year clinical practice.


To become certified in a particular subspecialty, a physician must be Board certified by the American Board of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation and complete additional training as specified by the Member Board.

  • Brain Injury Medicine
    A Physiatrist who specializes in brain injury medicine focuses on the prevention, evaluation, treatment and rehabilitation of individuals with acquired brain injury. This specialist addresses a range of injury-related disorders that have psychosocial, educational, and vocational consequences, as well as related injuries of the central nervous system. He or she also works with an interdisciplinary team to facilitate recovery and improve patients’ health and function.

  • Hospice and Palliative Medicine
    A Physiatrist who specializes in Hospice and Palliative Medicine has special knowledge and skills to prevent and relieve the suffering experienced by patients with life-limiting illnesses. This specialist works with an interdisciplinary hospice or palliative care team to optimize quality of life while addressing the physical, psychological, social, and spiritual needs of both patient and family.

  • Neuromuscular Medicine
    A Physiatrist who specializes in Neuromuscular Medicine focuses on the evaluation and treatment of disorders of nerve, muscle, or neuromuscular junction, including amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), peripheral neuropathies (e.g., diabetic), various muscular dystrophies, congenital and acquired myopathies, inflammatory myopathies (e.g., polymyositis), and neuromuscular transmission disorders (e.g., myasthenia gravis).

  • Pain Medicine
    A Physiatrist who specializes in Pain Medicine diagnoses and treats patients experiencing problems with acute, chronic, and/or cancer pain in both hospital and outpatient settings and coordinates patient care needs with other specialists.

  • Pediatric Rehabilitation Medicine
    A Physiatrist who specializes in Pediatric Rehabilitation Medicine diagnoses and manages congenital and childhood-onset impairments and disability such as cerebral palsy, spina bifida, acquired brain or spinal cord injury, amputation, sports injuries, and muscle and nerve diseases. This specialist works with an interdisciplinary team to improve a child’s mobility and daily function at home, in the community, and at school by prescribing equipment and therapies and managing medical conditions such as spasticity, pain, bladder or bowel dysfunction, and nutrition.

  • Spinal Cord Injury Medicine
    A Physiatrist who specializes in Spinal Cord Injury Medicine evaluates and manages patients with spinal cord injuries caused by trauma or from medical conditions such as multiple sclerosis, Guillain Barré syndrome, arthritis, infection, transverse myelitis, cancer, and spina bifida. This specialist works with an interdisciplinary team and prescribes equipment and therapies to enhance mobility and self-care skills; manage medical conditions such as pressure ulcers, pain, spasticity, bladder and bowel dysfunction, respiratory health, and mood disorders; and works to help patients return to their community and vocation.

  • Sports Medicine
    A Physiatrist who specializes in Sports Medicine focuses on the prevention, diagnosis, and treatment of injuries related to participating in sports and exercise. Additionally, this specialist also treats illnesses and diseases that might have effects on health and physical performance.

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