The Musculoskeletal (MSK) service is a specialist assessment, diagnosis and treatment service run by highly skilled, specialist physiotherapists called Extended Scope Practitioners (ESPs). The aim of the service is to provide a comprehensive assessment and diagnosis while working closely with you to develop an agreed ongoing management plan.

You may be referred into the service if:

  • you have a complex condition
  • you have an uncertain diagnosis
  • previous physiotherapy or other interventions have been unsuccessful
  • require a joint or soft tissue injection
  • require investigations (e.g. x-ray, MRI scan or blood tests)
  • may be a candidate for surgery and require an expert assessment and discussion on whether this is the right option for you.

Following the appointment with your ESP there are numerous possible outcomes however some common examples include:

  • onward referral to another aspect of the Moving Well Service (physiotherapy, group rehabilitation class, pain services or rheumatology)
  • injection delivered by one of our highly skilled clinicians
  • discharge with self-management programme
  • referral for imaging with a follow up booked in to review the findings
  • onward referral to another service outside of Moving Well
  • signposting to voluntary or third sector organisations.

Greater Preston

  • Ribbleton Clinic, Langden Drive, Preston, PR2 6HT
  • Minerva Health Centre, Lowthorpe Road, Preston, PR1 5NE
  • Fulwood Clinic, 4 Lytham Road, Fulwood, Preston, PR2 8JB
  • Preston Healthport, Vicarage Lane, Fulwood, Preston, PR2 8DW
  • Geoffrey Street Surgery, Geoffrey Street, Preston, PR1 5NE
  • Ingol Health Centre, Broadway, Preston, PR2 9TH


  • Chorley Health Centre, Collisson Avenue, Chorley, PR7 2TH
  • Library House Surgery, Avondale Road, Chorley, PR7 2AD
  • Chorley Surgery, 24-26 Gillibrand Road, Chorley, PR7 2EJ
  • Euxton Medical Centre, St Mary's Gate, Euxton, Chorley, PR7 6AH
  • Withnell Health centre, Railway Road, Withnell, Chorley, PR6 8UA

South Ribble

  • Leyland Clinic, 20 Yewlands Drive, Leyland, PR25 2TN
  • Bamber Bridge Health Centre, 29-31 School Lane, Bamber Bridge, PPR5 6QE
  • South Ribble Tennis Centre, Cuerden Way, Bamber Bridge, PR5 6BJ
  • Lostock Hall Medical Centre, 410 Leyland Road, PR5 5SA
  • Penwortham St Mary's Health Centre, Cop Lane, Penwortham, PR1 0SR

What are Musculoskeletal (MSK) conditions?

MSK conditions affect the joints, bones and muscles. There are more than 200 MSK conditions. They affect 1 in 4 adults in the UK and account for over 25% of surgical interventions in the NHS.

What is an Extended Scope Practitioner (ESP)?

An ESP is a clinical physiotherapist with specialist training, qualifications and experience, as such they are able to work outside of the usual scope of physiotherapy practice. This may include requesting investigations such as MRI scans, administering an injection or referring onward to another service or clinician.

What can I expect at my appointment?


Your appointment will last approximately 30 minutes. In this time your ESP will take an in depth history of your injury or condition from you. They will then thoroughly assess the area before discussing the findings with you and talking through the various treatment and management options available to you. This shared decision making is highly important to us and we want to involve you in the process every step of the way. This can then help you to truly make an informed decision and remain fully involved in your care and ongoing management.

On leaving your appointment you should be satisfied that you have had your diagnosis clearly explained. Options for ongoing management should be outlined with you being involved in the decision making process and happy with the management plan.

What should I wear?


To enable a full and thorough assessment your ESP may ask you to remove an item of clothing or expose the injured or affected area. If you’re not comfortable doing this, it is not a problem, however, it may limit the extent and reliability of the assessment.

It is recommended that you wear loose clothing appropriate items for the area affected such as a vest top for a neck or shorts for a knee.