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Research project funded in 2017

The assessment of therapeutic relationships in hemophilia care


Erin McCabe
University of Alberta – Edmonton, Alberta
One year funding

Co-PI and supervisor:
Dr. Douglas Gross
University of Alberta – Edmonton, Alberta


People with hemophilia have a lifelong risk for bleeding into joints and muscles. The blood causes damage over time, and they begin to experience stiffness and pain, making it difficult to do their regular activities. Physiotherapists and patients with hemophilia are partners in managing these problems. Research shows that when patients and physiotherapists have a positive relationship, patients may experience less pain, achieve higher levels of physical functioning, and greater satisfaction with care. The hemophilia community generally agrees that a good patient-provider relationship is an important aspect of treatment. However, there has been little research evaluating the quality of the patient-physiotherapist relationship, and the little information available is scattered in many different places.

This project is a scoping review. We will search for and compile the research information, to clarify whether a good way of evaluating patient-physiotherapist relationships exists. If there is not, then the next step will be to create an assessment tool. Once there is an established tool, we can begin in-depth research to understand how we can optimize patient physiotherapist relationships, and how optimization might enhance treatment outcomes. Ultimately, this will lead to improved physiotherapy care for patients with hemophilia.