McKenzie Method (also MDT = Mechanical Diagnosis and Therapy)
The New Zealand physical therapist Robin McKenzie developed the method in the late 1950s. He called his approach Mechanical Diagnosis and Therapy (MDT) which is now taught in a standardized fashion in 36 countries. A central tenant of McKenzie is that instead of categorizing patients' complaints on an anatomical basis, it is more useful to group them according the treatments that effectively deal with their problems.
MDT uses primarily self treatment strategies and minimizes manual therapy procedures. The McKenzie trained therapist supports the patient with passive procedures only if the self treatment is not completely effective. McKenzie states that self treatment is the best way to achieve a lasting improvement of back and neck pain. In this context, centralization of pain during evaluation and treatment is a phenomenon of diagnostic importance. It describes the process of pain in an extremity moving to the spine where it may be felt more intensely. Centralization of pain is considered a positive prognostic sign and used to guide further treatment. The effectiveness of the McKenzie method is supported by studies. It is applied worldwide to treat deep back pain, neck pain and joint pain in the extremities.
MDT falls under prescriptions for physical therapy.