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Physical Therapy Clinic

The UCSF Pediatric Physical Therapy Clinic wants all children with mobility or functional issues to reach their potential. We have the expertise and resources to help young patients overcome physical challenges caused by developmental delays, illnesses or injuries. In addition, our family-centered approach places special emphasis on teaching parents and other caregivers how to help their child walk, move and play safely. This is key to supporting our patients' ability to function in their own homes and communities. We offer services in both the clinic and the hospital, with convenient access to physical therapy in many of our community clinics.

We care for children with physical impairments related to:

  • Brain or spinal cord injuries
  • Cancer or its treatments
  • Chronic illnesses, such as diabetes, arthritis and sickle cell disease
  • Sports injuries
  • Strokes or other neurological injuries
  • Surgical procedures
  • Traumatic injuries, such as occur in car accidents

Our pediatric physical therapists benefit from the ability to collaborate with other UCSF professionals, including specialists in pediatric physical medicine, pediatric cardiologists, pediatric neurologists, clinical nurse specialists, child life specialists, occupational therapists, speech-language therapists, psychologists, and experts in prosthetics and orthotics. Our patients are also supported by clinical nurses with special training in addressing complex medical needs, such as those of a child with a tracheostomy, on a ventilator or receiving tube feedings.

Each child's treatment plan is developed to address individual needs and goals. Treatments may include exercises to increase range of motion and strength; training to improve gait and functional mobility; neuromuscular reeducation (techniques that condition a part of the body to move normally again); casting, splinting and taping to improve alignment; and instruction on how to use crutches correctly. Our therapists seek to maximize every child's recovery potential and provide instruction for patients and families on maintaining strength and mobility over the long term.

While our program is for babies and children up to 18 years old, we offer assistance with continuing care and service referrals for patients who age out of our care but require ongoing support.

Our locations (2)

    Awards & recognition

    • Ranked among the nation's best in 10 specialties

    Plan your visit

    Preparing for your appointment

    What to Bring

    • Photo I.D.
    • Health insurance card
    • Insurance authorization, if required
    • Doctor's referral, if required
    • Recent test results related to your child's condition
    • List of medications, including dosages, plus any your child is allergic to
    • List of questions you may have
    • Device or paper for taking notes

    For visitors

    Before you head to the hospital, check out our guidelines for visitors and caregivers.


    Your Stay

    We offer valuable information to help you plan for your child's upcoming hospital stay. Find out about food services, family accommodations and more.

    Learn more

    Your Child's Care Team

    Our doctors, nurses, child life specialists and other providers have special training to care for children. Meet your child's care team.

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    Interpreter Services & Communication Assistance

    Interpreter services in many languages and TDDs are available for families that need help communicating with care teams. Here's how to access them.

    Learn more

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    Wellness Center for Youth with Chronic Conditions

    Wellness Center for Youth with Chronic Conditions

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    Support services

    Child Life Services

    Activity rooms, pet therapy and more to help kids feel at home.

    Child Life

    Certified child life specialists ease the stress and anxiety of childhood illness through therapeutic play, schooling and family-focused support.

    Family Amenities

    Family-friendly amenities help you relax and take care of yourself while staying close to your child. We offer lounges, kitchens, showers, breastfeeding rooms and more.


    Social Services

    Social workers ease the effect of illness, injury and hospitalization on your family with counseling and assistance to help you navigate the challenges.


    Activity Rooms

    Activity rooms offer a relaxed environment for children of all ages. Features include a playroom, digital arts studio and teen lounge. Find out more.


    Art Therapy

    Art therapy helps kids and families express themselves, making it easier to cope with pediatric health issues. Group and bedside services are available.


    Music Therapy Program

    Board-certified music therapists help kids cope with illness and the feelings that come with it. Find out about group activities and bedside therapy.


    School Program

    Our schoolroom services and individual learning programs help children hospitalized at UCSF continue their education and get ready to return to school.


    School Re-Entry Program

    We help kids return to school after hospitalization by educating staff and students about their needs and recommending needed accommodations. Read more.


    Individual Playtime & Instruction

    If your child can't be around other kids for medical reasons, you can sign up for private sessions in our activity and school rooms. Find out how.


    Interpreter Services & Communication Assistance

    Interpreter services in many languages and TDDs are available for families that need help communicating with care teams. Here's how to access them.

    Family Resource Center

    We help families cope with the challenges of childhood illness and hospitalization in a relaxing environment where parents can get a much-needed break.


    Parent Support Program

    Weekly activities, including knitting, scrapbooking, chair massage and more, help family caregivers get a much-needed break. Find out more.


    Patient Relations

    Patient relations reps and nursing supervisors are here to answer questions and address concerns. Learn about your rights, how to reach us and more.


    Spiritual Care

    Chaplains help UCSF patients, families and staff cope with the spiritual and emotional challenges of childhood illness. Learn more.


    International Services

    If you're coming to UCSF from outside the U.S., we coordinate your child's appointments and provide other helpful services. Here's how to get started.

    Fetal surgery firsts

    The first open fetal surgery in the world was performed at UCSF in the early 1980s.