Archive for May, 2013

Piriformis Syndrome

Thursday, May 16th, 2013

Maybe you’ve got a pain in the butt? If it’s literally your rear end that hurts, there’s a specific muscle that may be at fault, the piriformis.

The piriformis is located near the glutes in the upper hip. Its job is to move your leg outward by rotation and abduction. Think of sitting down, crossing your leg, with ankle on opposite knee.

A normal piriformis is essential to walking and balance, and by extension most sports activities. Injuries typically occur through sports, exercise overuse, training errors, or trauma, but can also be caused by frequent and prolonged sitting. People can be prone to piriformis problems due to genetics.

Typically just one side is involved, but it can be both. Initial symptoms are pain and tingling in the buttock(s) progressing to numbness. Pain is usually triggered by activities and many sports activities become painful. Eventually the act of walking or sitting can be very uncomfortable. Further progression results in pain down the back of the leg due to irritation of the sciatic nerve, and now you’ve got ‘sciatica due to piriformis syndrome’.

Because the piriformis muscle has an instrumental role in walking and balance, once it’s irritated, it’s easily re-irritated, and the irritation is usually a persistent source of pain unless proactive steps are taken.

The good news is that piriformis injuries and piriformis syndrome can be effectively treated right here in the clinic. First line treatments involve electrical muscle stimulation, progressive stretching, mobilization and alignment. We will identify the cause, correct training errors and posture, and recommend return to activity plans.

We’ve had a lot of success with this condition, thus if you’ve got a pain in the butt, call 612-822-5973 to schedule an appointment.

Shoulder Injuries: Rotator Cuff Tear

Wednesday, May 15th, 2013

The rotator cuff is a collective of four muscle tendons surrounding the shoulder joint. The bony structures of the shoulder joint are inherently unstable (the upper arm bone sits against the shoulder blade much like a golf ball sits on a golf tee). The rotator cuff tendons add significantly to the stability of the joint.

If one of the four tendons is damaged, you may have a rotator cuff tear. Tearing is described as ‘partial thickness’ or ‘full thickness’. A partial thickness tear is akin to fraying a tendon whereas full thickness implies a tear that is worse than fraying, usually a tear involving the majority of the tendon even up to a complete detachment.

Tearing most often occurs from trauma, sports injury or overuse, and risk increases with age.

Symptoms can range from none to severe pain and inability to raise the affected arm. Typical symptoms included mild shoulder pain that increases as the arm is raised. Pain can be quite sharp with sudden movements. There may be decreased capacity to raise the arm along with weakness of the shoulder. It can become difficult to perform daily activities, such as dressing. Delaying treatment may increase the likelihood of compensatory syndromes developing in the upper back, shoulder blade and lower neck, for example muscle spasms, and frozen shoulder syndrome, a condition were the connective tissue surrounding the shoulder becomes chronically stiff and painful.

Treatment:

Conservative, non-surgical care is considered the best initial treatment for rotor cuff injuries. First line treatments we provide in this clinic for rotor cuff injuries include ultrasound therapy, exercise rehabilitation, interferential stimulation, joint alignment and soft tissue mobilization. Even for full thickness tearing, conservative care is recommended initially, in conjunction with a surgical consultation to consider additional conservative measures such as corticosteroid injections. Delaying treatment and chronic injuries do not respond as quickly. For chronic cases, massage therapy can be a useful adjunct to address compensatory muscular stiffness in the upper back and neck.

If you suspect a rotator cuff tear, new or chronic, or any shoulder joint injury, call 612-822-5973 to set up an appointment, during which you will be examined to reach a diagnosis, and a treatment plan recommended.

Chronic Fatigue Syndrome Update

Thursday, May 9th, 2013

Unexplained, persistent malaise, widespread muscle and joint pain, headaches, mental and physical exhaustion. Restless and un-refreshing sleep. Inability to focus, think and concentrate effectively.

These are a few of the more common symptoms of Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, recognized and internationally classified under G93.3 (ICD-10) and 780.71 (ICD-9).

In this month’s Discovery Magazine, the research of two Norwegian oncologists in the field of chronic fatigue immune dysfunction syndrome was reviewed. The scientists are focusing on a component of the body’s immune system, B-cells, as playing a significant role in the progression of chronic fatigue.

B-cells play an important role in the body’s immunity; B-cells generate antibodies, which help direct the body’s immune system to fend off invaders. Unfortunately when something goes awry, B-cells generate antibodies that attack healthy tissue, so-called auto-antibodies.

In their study, the scientists treated one group with rituximab, a drug that selectively depletes B-cells, and another group with a placebo. After 1 year of therapy 66% of the rituximab group significantly improved, whereas 13% of the placebo group improved.

Unfortunately, even in the cases of positive response, the initial improvement was slow and once the therapy was halted, in most cases the chronic fatigue returned, and the patients had to be re-treated.

Ice Out means warmer weather and lots of outdoor activities

Monday, May 6th, 2013

It’s official! The ice has ‘gone out’ on Lake Calhoun as of April 29th, 2013. This sets a new MN record for lateness. Ice out conveys the arrival of warmer weather and soon the lakeside trails will be crowded with all manner of people on the move.

In fact, running injuries are among the most common sports conditions treated here at Calhoun Chiropractic Clinic. While a full list of running-r…elated injuries is simply too long to post, some of our more commonly seen maladies includes: Iliotibial Band Syndrome, Runner’s Knee, Ankle Sprains, tendonitis, shin splints and plantar fasciitis.

Calhoun Chiropractic treats all of these and more, though the best advice we can give in this post is: Avoid Injuries before they begin.

The majority of running injuries occur from overtraining. Don’t go too far, too fast, too often. Get enough rest and vary your exercise.

Cardiovascular training, fitness training and weight loss can be accomplished in many different ways. That said, it’s a challenge in long distance running because to get better, you have to log the miles.

General tips:

• Progress in mileage and speed should be gradual, aim to increase distance by 10% per week.

• Intersperse easy and difficult speed/distance days.

• Substitute at least one non-running exercise day per week and have at least one rest day.

• One week per month, reduce your total weekly mileage.

• Stretch regularly. Watch your shoes for abnormal or uneven wear patterns.

• Above all else, pain is a warning sign. Stop running and consult us immediately.

Get out there, enjoy the outdoors, and Good Running.

It Just Works

Monday, May 6th, 2013

The phrase popularized by Apple, referring to their popular Apple ecosystem of devices, wherein owing an iPhone or iPad conveys that the device will do its job seamlessly and be unobtrusive while doing so.

We model our chiropractic treatment along the lines of ‘It Just Works’.

We will not make a lot of flashy promises and tell grandiose stories but rather deliver simple, competent, quality care, without overly-complicated care plans or medicines, all while communicating seamlessly with the patient and their existing healthcare team, to accomplish the primary goal of getting the patient well.

Getting well after all is why patients seek treatment for neck and back pain.

From Whiplash to Chronic Pain?!

Monday, May 6th, 2013

Back and neck pain are among the major reasons why patients seek out chiropractic care. Frequent or chronic episodes of pain occurring in the neck or back, caused by anything from poor posture to repetitive work to trauma from an accident can be treated through chiropractic adjustments.

If you happen to be in an auto accident and have injuries from the auto accident, Calhoun Chiropractic specializes in treating auto injuries such as whiplash. Even if you are just sore, you should get checked out immediately because you may experience serious health problems down the road.