Tools for good practice

Webinars have made MSK professionals aware of NICE-endorsed clinical knowledge summaries, writes Katie Knapton

Private practitioner Katie Knapton
Private practitioner Katie Knapton founder of PhysioFast Online

As a rather long in the tooth clinician I was particularly interested about how these CKS were developed and if they would be of any clinical relevance to me. This was my driver for attending the CKS webinar.  

So, I was pleased to confirm that yes they are evidence-based and updated every five years, or more frequently if required, for example if new evidence comes to light. In fact, as experienced clinicians we are invited to comment on them. Plus if there are new topics which you feel should be covered you can contact Dr Gerry Morrow directly: 

During the webinar we learnt that CKS cover a total of 37 musculoskeletal topics. These range from back pain to baker’s cyst and are surprisingly informative. No, not a recipe for treatment, but a useful tool for checking things out and to confirm clinical reasoning. 

The other brilliant thing is the access to other specialities. Things that potentially are beyond our normal knowledge, for example haematology to poisoning!  

They therefore are a means for quick access to vital information when you are a first contact practitioner or working in primary care, or just interested.  

This ability to get accurate information fast can hugely help with confirming appropriate ongoing management for MSK and beyond. 

For students they help bring a sensible list of potential implications and are therefore a good resource. The example of shoulder pain was used where it lists potential causes including other areas that could be indicated.

It is true that these are by no means a recipe for treatment, but they are a valuable starting point and reference for all clinicians at all stages of their careers. So a huge thank you to Emma Salt, Fran Wilkie and Ian Sanders for doing such a good job in highlighting their use. We need to spread the word about this really easy source of reference that is currently underutilised.

Private practitioner Katie Knapton is founder of PhysioFast Online, an online physio clinic and provider of ephysio to Boots

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