Physiatry is an area of medicine that deals with testing physical functioning and directing the physical rehabilitation of a patient. Physiatrists are specialists in physical medicine and treat a wide variety of patients with disabilities.

In addition, physiatrists may recommend and perform epidural steroid injections (ESI) to relieve irritation of spinal nerves. Physiatrists also perform EMG and nerve conduction tests, local injections, as well as examinations. While such exams are the same or similar to an evaluation by an orthopaedic surgeon, physiatrists do not perform the same surgical procedures typical of orthopaedic surgery.