2 Contact Hours

An understanding of normal anatomy is essential to the treatment of common upper extremity disorders. This course offers a general overview of the hand and upper extremity through a series of scenarios, clinical questions, and illustrations to help you improve your clinical reasoning skills. This entry-level course is appropriate for occupational and physical therapists and assistants.

Audience: OT, COTA, PT, PTA

Skill Level: Entry-level

Contact Hours: 2

The assignment of AOTA CEUs does not imply endorsement of specific course content, products, or clinical procedures by AOTA 

Teaching Methods: Course content includes text from, "Fundamentals of Hand Therapy: Clinical reasoning and treatment guidelines for common diagnoses of the upper extremity (2007)" Edited by Cynthia Cooper, MFA, MA, OTR/L, CHT - Copyright 2009 Elsevier, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Used with Permission.

Criteria for Passing: Each learner must complete all learning activities/handouts and pass a final exam to receive credit.

Course Objectives:

By the end of this course, each learner will be able to:

  1. Identify how proper cervical alignment facilitates normal functioning of the blood vessels and nerve roots.
  2. Identify what movements of the upper body create additional tension on the blood vessels and peripheral nerves.
  3. Understand the relationship between the rotator cuff muscles and an intact and mobile genohumeral joint.
  4. Understand which muscles are associated with the median, ulnar, and radial nerve distributions and how you test each associated muscle to assess nerve function.
  5. Identify muscles originating on the lateral and medial epicondyles and why it is useful to evaluate these muscles.
  6. Understand how the supportive structures from the extensor and flexor tendons to the fingers affect movement.
  7. Identify the major structures supporting the wrist, fingers, and thumb and how they change positions with movement, and how they contribute to the strength of the wrist and hand required for function.

Here is the course outline:

1. Introduction

Please read the introduction to provide you with important information and tips about your course.

2. Course Objectives - Fundamentals of Hand Therapy: Upper Extremity Anatomy

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3. Coursework - Fundamentals of Hand Therapy: Upper Extremity Anatomy

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4. Course Final and Survey - Fundamentals of Hand Therapy: Upper Extremity Anatomy

Click to take the final exam. Completion of coursework is required to access the final exam.


The following certificates are awarded when the course is completed:

Certificate of Completion