What is an OCS?

Published - Jul 28, 2021

What is an OCS?

Content provided by Dr. Jessie Lesar, PT, OCS: physical therapist at IRG Physical

Therapy – Murphy’s Corner.

An Orthopaedic Clinical Specialist (OCS) is one of the 10 specialty certifications that are

recognized by the American Physical Therapy Association (APTA).

An OCS is qualified to treat any orthopaedic condition ranging from the spine to the

extremities, in both surgical and non-surgical contexts. Circumstances that a board-certified OCS practitioner is equipped to facilitate care for include:

- Ankle sprains

- Anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) injuries

- Hip labral tears

- Lateral epicondylitis (“tennis elbow”)

- Rotator cuff tears

- Spinal stenosis

- Spinal disc derangement

- Spinal fusion (post-surgical)

- Wrist fractures

Dr. Jessie Lesar, PT, OCS, physical therapist at IRG Physical Therapy – Murphy’s

Corner, officially obtained her board certification in orthopaedics during the summer of

2021, attaining her pre-certification experience through an orthopaedic residency

program at the MGH Institute of Health Professions in Boston.

The year-long program included both clinical and didactic components with the goal of

the expansion of resident knowledge and clinical reasoning. Throughout the residency,

Lesar and her colleagues participated in various research, volunteer and teaching

activities. Lesar cites the most valuable component of her residency as the weekly

mentoring time that she had the opportunity to partake in.

OCS certification coursework presents providers with a more in-depth understanding of

the management of orthopaedic conditions, expanding upon what is taught in generalist

physical therapy coursework. The focus of the OCS framework is on utilizing the best

current evidence to achieve better patient outcomes through quicker clinical reasoning

and more specific diagnosis and treatment.

Board-certified orthopaedic clinical specialists at IRG Physical & Hand Therapy are

ready to help patients tackle any and all orthopaedic ailments. Click here to request an

appointment with an orthopaedic clinical specialist or call 425.316.8046 to learn more

about starting the journey back to your best self.