FAQ

I’ve just had surgery, isn’t it too early to start rehabilitation?

No! The body starts the healing process straight after surgery and hand therapy can assist this process to go smoothly and limit any setbacks. Sometimes you will need a custom made splint straight after the surgery, for other injuries you need advice on what to do or not do and gentle exercises to help the healing process. We also start scar management from when your stitches come out and this also helps the healing and prevents secondary problems from occurring.

I’ve been referred to Suzanne Caragianis, do I have to wait to see her or can I see another staff member?

No, you can see one of the other staff members! All of the staff at SA Hand Therapy have extensive training and education in hand/arm rehabilitation and are well-equipped to assess and treat your injury. All staff regularly attend educational courses and conferences to improve their skills and knowledge and all have had many hours of personal tuition and training from Suzanne. When you ring to make an appointment tell our reception staff what your problem is and they will book you in with the most appropriate person.

I have Carpal Tunnel Syndrome, do I have to have surgery?

No not necessarily! Current evidence indicates that approximately 65% of people with mild to moderate carpal tunnel syndrome improve with conservative management. This includes wearing a custom made resting splint at night and doing nerve and tendon gliding exercises in the day for about 10 weeks. Please contact us for an appointment and we will make you the splint that you need and advise you on the exercises and what activities to avoid.

Why should I go to hand therapy and not see my regular physiotherapist?

Hand therapists are highly skilled occupational therapists or physiotherapists who have specific training in treating all hand, wrist, elbow and shoulder injuries. They have a very thorough and in-depth knowledge of these injuries and the specific anatomy and are able to make a clear assessment of what the problem is and what to do about it.

What is the difference between a off-the-shelf splint brought at a chemist and a custom-made splint?

Custom-made splints are made to fit you after the correct diagnosis has been made. Custom-made splints are fabricated from a range of materials specific to your injury and needs (i.e. thermoplastic (rigid), leather, neoprene, or a combination of these). Off-the-shelf splints are often of poor fit and don't match the injury or body part to achieve the best outcome.

Do I need a referral for hand therapy?

Yes, if you are attending for an injury as part of a Workcover claim or Motor Vehicle claim with Allianz. You will need a written referral letter from your treating doctor.

Yes, if your medical expenses are covered under the Department of Veterans’ Affairs (DVA). You will need a written referral letter from your treating doctor.

No, if attending privately and paying for consults yourself or through your private health insurance.

What do I bring to my appointment?

Please bring to your first appointment;

  • All relevant investigations for the injured body part (X-rays, ultrasound, MRI etc)
  • Referral letter from your Doctor (where needed, see above)
  • Claims information – claim number, case manager details (for Workcover and Allianz claims).

How many appointments will I need?

A treatment plan and a guidance of the number of appointments that you may need will be discussed with you by your hand therapist at your first appointment, depending upon your individual injury and circumstances. At SA Hand Therapy we have a big focus on patient education and self-management strategies as this allows you to be in control of your injury and rehabilitation. Current evidence indicates that this empowerment provides the best environment for a speedy recovery!


"We’re specialists in treating injuries of the hand, elbow and shoulder — it’s all we do."