Ep 182 Chaser – LeeAnne Carrothers on Why Vitals are Vital


Episode 182 Chaser

In this episode with LeeAnne Carrothers, we learn all about why vitals are so important, how PTs can monitor cardiovascular disease, and what types of patients you might see if you work in the cold of Alaska.

Bio: LeeAnne Carrothers, PT, PhD

LeeAnne Carrothers is the program director of a new PTA program at the University of Alaska Anchorage, Alaska’s first educational program in physical therapy. She has been a PT for 30 years, and an educator for 28 of that. She currently works at the Providence Alaska Transitional Care Center in Anchorage, AK as an on-call PT. She has her BS in Zoology from UC Davis, MS in PT from USC, and PhD in Clinical Psychology from California Graduate Institute.

LeeAnne wrote 1.5 chapters in Coglianese “Clinical Exercise Pathophysiology for Physical Therapy: Examination, Testing, and Exercise Prescription for Movement-Related Disorders”: Chapter 4–Fatigue and Deconditioning, Chapter 5–Principles of Training and Exercise Prescription (with Skye Donovan). She also assists with Wilderness Medicine education for the AK Family Medicine Residency.

Contact Information

Email: [email protected]

Twitter: @lacphd_AK

Episode 182 Shoutouts

Ethel Frese, PT, DPT, MHS, CCS – Blood Pressure Measurement Guidelines for Physical Therapists. Find it here.

Tom Walters, PT, DPT, OCS, CSCS – Pre-sport and injury analysis

Episode 182 Highlights

(2:00) BS in zoology? What made you want to do that?

(2:40) Alaska, how’d you get up there? Where are you from?

(4:30) If you’re not able to find your perfect job, most of the time you have to go make it.

(4:50) I have regular blood pressure, then I have CAPTE blood pressure which runs a smidge higher.

(5:00) Why are vitals vital?

(5:55) We’re movement experts, we should make sure they can move safely.

(6:00) Why aren’t PTs paying more attention to them?

(7:30) 29% of adults in the US overall have hypertension. 1 in 3. Only 50% of those people have blood pressure that is controlled. When you get up over 55, the rate of people that have hypertension goes over 50% and only goes up from there as people age.

(11:00) How do we get this from an academic discussion to happening, what do we do?

(13:15) This is essentially a no cost, less than 30 second investment in time.

(14:40) Give us some insight into Alaska and how it’s different up there for you as a PT.

(15:00) LeeAnne tells crazy stories of some of the patients she’s seen in Alaska with “Alaska” injuries.

(20:50) Where is somewhere else in the US that you would want to go to be a PT that you haven’t yet?

(23:00) Some people don’t have access to physical therapy. What are your thoughts on telehealth? What have you seen in terms of benefits or where does it fall short?

(24:45) What’s something that you’ve read recently or are reading that is really inspired you?

(25:55) Who is someone that we should be paying more attention to in the field of PT?

(27:20) You have a background in clinical psychology. How and why’d you do that?


Use your words. It’s hard enough to be out there working in our world with one another and working with our patients. If we’re not asking for what it is that we need, my internal thing is: don’t hold me responsible for not doing something you haven’t asked me to do. So, use your words. It saves time, it saves effort, and it’s certainly more direct than the healthier approach than having you try to figure out what it I really mean as opposed to what it is I really said.

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