Treatment For Back Pain

by Administrator 26. July 2017 10:59

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Spine Trauma: Causes, Symptoms And Treatment

by Administrator 17. July 2017 10:22

Any injury/damage to the vertebrae, spinal cord or both is termed as Spine Trauma. The medical condition is also variously known as Spinal cord Injury, Compression of the Spinal Cord, etc.

Spine Trauma may result from direct or indirect injury as well as other indirect stress factors like diseases of neighboring structures (e.g. Herniated Disc), tissues etc. Injuries to the vertebrae may result in fractures of the vertebral bones and other structures, dislocation (involving the facet joints) or subluxation (which is injury to the ligaments without concomitant injury to the bony structures).

Vertebral injuries may be stable or unstable. Stable vertebral injuries are fairly less complicated. In unstable vertebral injuries, bones and ligaments are injured substantially resulting in free movement of the vertebrae that can compress the spinal cord apart from disrupting the flow of blood. Unstable vertebral injuries are usually very painful and affect the nerves substantially resulting in pain, paralysis etc. Spinal cord may be traumatized by even a small injury. Diseases like Rheumatoid Arthritis and Osteoporosis can render the spinal cord liable to easy injury. Spinal cord may be injured in the case of Spinal Stenosis where the spinal canal through which the cord passes becomes very narrow in older people.

Causes

  • Physical assault –  injuries caused by knives or gunshots
  • Violent falls on hard surfaces
  • Diving into shallow waters with a hard surface underneath – as in swimming pools
  • Slipping on the floor, vehicular accidents
  • Sudden twisting of the head, neck or back during sports/athletics
  • Broken vertebrae with protruding bone fragments may damage the spinal cord
  • Simple falls involving relatively minor injuries may also cause spinal trauma in older people

Symptoms:

  • Weakness
  • Pain
  • Shooting pain down the extremities
  • Impaired movement of arms, legs, hands, and fingers
  • Numbness and loss of sensation in the area near and below the site of injury
  • Muscular weakness or loss of muscular strength
  • Paralysis
  • Breathing problems
  • Loss of Control on bowel and/or bladder movement – resulting in incontinence, etc.
  • Loss of sexual function
  • Internal bleeding
  • Sweating
  • dema of the spinal cord
  • Hypothermia/hyperthermia

Diagnosis

  • Physical examination
  • CT Scan
  • MRI of the spine
  • Spinal X-ray
  • Myelogram – an examination of the spine through x-ray after injecting a contrast dye

Treatment

  • Analgesics  or painkillers may be prescribed by the spine surgeon
  • Muscle-relaxants may be helpful
  • Surgical realignment of vertebrae may be an option
  • Surgical removal of bone fragments resulting from the injury
  • Surgical fusion of vertebrae
  • Spinal braces to restrict  movement
  • Decompression Laminectomy- Remove fluid or tissue that presses on the spinal cord
  • Bed-rest may be advised for some time depending on the condition
  • Spinal traction for a fairly extended duration
  • Physiotherapy is helpful in most cases

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Discogenic Low Back Pain: Treatment In Frisco, TX

by Administrator 26. May 2017 09:23

Discogenic low back pain is the most common type of chronic back pain. It is a degenerative condition in which the pain arises from one or more intervertebral discs. However, all the degenerated discs are not a cause of pain. Patients can benefit from conservative modes of treatment if the condition is diagnosed in the initial stages.

Causes

  • Progression of age
  • Nutritional deficiencies
  • Poor posture over a long period of time
  • Severe pain associated with sprains and strains

Symptoms

  • Dull pain in the lower back
  • Pain may radiate to the legs, hips and feet
  • Prolonged sitting may worsen the pain
  • Discomfort after waking up in the morning
  • Loss of bladder and bowel control may occur in extreme cases

Diagnosis

  • The orthopedic doctor may first note down the symptoms seen in the patient and also ask questions regarding the history of associated pain
  • A thorough physical examination of the spine may be conducted to check for areas of tenderness or pain
  • Imaging tests such as Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) may help to reveal degenerative disc changes
  • A provocative discogram or may also be conducted by the doctor if he suspects one or more spinal discs as the source of pain
  • During this procedure, a contrast dye may be injected into the suspected discs to make them visible under fluoroscopy

Treatment

The treatment method for discogenic low back pain is determined on the basis of severity of the problem. The main aim of the treatment is to reduce discomfort and provide relief from low back pain and leg pain.

Non-surgical treatment

  • Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory medication might be recommended by the orthopedic doctor to reduce pain
  • Stretching and strengthening exercises may be advised to the patient so as to attain flexibility in the lower back
  • Passive therapies such as ultrasound, transcutaneous nerve stimulation (TENS) and massage therapy can be recommended depending on the condition of the patient
  • Corticosteroid injections can be administered in the facet joints or around the nerves of the back to reduce the discomfort associated with discogenic low back pain
  • Braces or orthoses can provide support to the lower back and prevent extremely painful conditions
  • Lifestyle modification might be required depending on the individual patient’s condition

Surgical treatment

  • Surgery may be recommended in case all the above mentioned modes of treatment fail to show positive results
  • Minimally invasive techniques may be used to treat Herniated Discs or correct Scoliosis that may be causing low back pain
  • Spinal fusion is another surgical treatment option that can be utilized by the orthopedic doctor

In case you suspect Discogenic Low Pain, consult the spine specialists at OrthoTexas, Frisco for diagnosis and treatment. To schedule an appointment, call at (214) 618 – 5502.

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Back Pain In Children And Teens

by Administrator 25. April 2017 08:39

Back pain is not a common cause of worry in children and teenagers as their bodies are more flexible as compared to adults. However, children may get affected by back pain due to some underlying disorder that needs to be treated immediately. Any kind of back pain in children and teens that is severe or does not go away for a long time warrants medical attention.

Causes

  • Overuse injury
  • Injury during an athletic event
  • Carrying a heavy backpack
  • Spondylolysis or a defect of the joint between vertebral bones
  • Slipping of one vertebra over another or Spondylolisthesis
  • Disc injuries
  • Vertebral fractures during skateboarding or biking
  • An infection of the spine or a tumor
  • A rounded spine

Symptoms

  • Extreme pain in the back that worsens with certain activities
  • Trouble in walking
  • Bowel or bladder issues
  • Weakness or numbness in back, hips and legs

Diagnosis

  • The doctor may conduct a thorough physical examination of the child and note down the visible symptoms
  • The medical history of the child may be noted and specific questions regarding pain may  be asked by the doctor
  • The Spine may also be examined to look for abnormalities and mobility problems
  • The posture and walking gait may be analyzed by the doctor
  • The doctor my check the nerve stimulation in the back along with the reflexes of the legs.
  • He may conduct other tests to check for balance, flexibility and muscle strength
  • Imaging tests such as X-Rays, bone scans, CT scans or MRI scans may be suggested to have a detailed look at the bone and nerve structures

Treatment

In most of the children and teens, back pain tends to be short-lived if caused by strain or overuse. It resolves after a few months on its own. However, other cases require adequate treatment.

Non-surgical treatment

  • Pain medications might may be recommended by the doctor to reduce the discomfort in the back.
  • Application of heat packs during the first few days after a back injury may also prove to be helpful
  • Rest may be advised if back pain is caused by over exertion
  • The doctor may advise some patients to remain active, in order to
  • The doctor may advise some patients
  •  to remain active in order to avoid weakening of muscles
  • Stretching and strengthening exercises may be recommended to reduce pain
  • Low-impact activities such as swimming, cycling and walking may also be suggested to improve the condition
  • The doctor may ask the patients to avoid activities that cause pain like twisting, bending, etc.  

Surgical treatment

  • Surgical intervention may be necessary if the back pain is caused by a serious underlying medical condition such as scoliosis or a herniated disc etc.

For complete treatment of back pain, visit OrthoTexas, Frisco. To schedule an appointment with the orthopedic surgeon, call at (214) 618-5502.

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Kinked Neck: Orthopedic Treatment In Frisco, TX

by Administrator 27. March 2017 11:13

Neck pain and injuries can occur as a result of daily wear and tear of bones that happens over a period of time. A kinked or stiff neck is one of the most common problems associated with the neck. The pain can range from minor to severe and even spread to other body parts such as shoulders and arms.

Causes

  • Improper neck position while watching TV or working on a laptop
  • Daily lifestyle stress and anxiety
  • Minor neck injury
  • Sports related injuries
  • Major trauma or accident that causes a direct blow to the neck
  • Sleeping on an improper pillow that is too high or too low
  • Sleeping on the stomach with the neck in a twisted position
  • Holding the neck in an abnormal position for prolonged periods
  • An underlying disorder of the cervical spine such as degenerative disc disease

Symptoms

  • Soreness in the neck
  • Difficulty in making neck movements
  • Discomfort while trying to turn the head on one side
  • Headache and shoulder or arm pain
  • Pain becomes worse after any strenuous activity

Diagnosis

  • The spine doctor will conduct a thorough physical examination of the patient’s neck and associated structures
  • The patient’s history of discomfort along with symptoms is noted down
  • The doctor will also ask the patient to perform certain neck movements to check the extent of discomfort
  • Imaging tests such as X-Rays or CT scans might be ordered to have a clear picture of the neck and cervical spine

Treatment

Most of the patients with a kinked neck benefit from conventional forms of treatment. Surgery is required in extreme cases where the cause of a stiffed neck is a disorder in the spine or spinal cord.

Non-surgical treatment

  • The patient is advised to take complete rest so as to reduce stiffness associated with a kinked neck
  • All physical activities that require twisting of head need to be completely avoided for few days
  • Application of ice packs can help in reducing inflammation caused by a kinked neck
  • Alternately, using heat packs can also promote healing
  • Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs may be recommended by the spine doctor to reduce inflammation
  • Gradually the patient is advised to perform stretching exercises to regain normal range of motion of the neck
  • Low-impact aerobic activities such as walking are also recommended at a later stage of healing

Surgical treatment

  • Surgical intervention is required if all the above treatment methods fail to provide any relief
  • The most common surgical procedure is Anterior cervical discectomy and fusion (ACDF) in which the specialist doctor removes the problem-causing disc in the cervical spine
  • Another surgery to regain neck flexibility is known as cervical artificial disc replacement. The procedure involves removal of the damaged disc causing neck pain and replacing it with an artificial disc

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Tailbone Pain: Causes, Symptoms And Treatment

by Administrator 24. February 2017 16:41

Tailbone or coccyx is a triangular, curved bone at the lower end of the spine. It is made up of four bones connected by ligaments and the vestigial disc. Pain in this part of the spine is medically referred to as Coccydynia. Tailbone pain is often misunderstood as lower back or butt pain and may not get diagnosed in the first place. This condition is observed to affect women more as they have a broader pelvis that gives more exposure to the coccyx.

Causes

  • Childbirth is a physically stressful process that may press or irritate the tailbone when the head of the baby passes out of the mother’s body
  • Falling on the back may damage the tailbone. Elderly are more prone to such injuries
  • Slipping on a hard surface may injure the bone
  • Spinal Tumor or infection
  • Sitting for prolonged periods may lead to tailbone pain
  • Injury while participating in recreational and sports activities such as skiing, football, skate boarding
  • Osteoporosis- weakening of the bones with age may make an individual prone to tailbone pain
  • Inflammation due to Arthritis

Symptoms

  • Constant, intense pain in the tailbone and buttocks
  • The pain may worsen upon sitting
  • Pain may radiate to the thighs and legs
  • Sitting on padded surface may increase the pain as it exerts upward pressure on the tailbone
  • Sudden shift from a sitting to standing position aggravates the pain
  • Bowel movements can be painful
  • Women may have painful menstrual cycles
  • Tenderness in the affected area
  • Visible bruising

Diagnosis

  • The patient’s medical history, frequency and symptoms may be noted
  • A detailed physical evaluation of the patient’s rectum and pelvis may be required
  • Neurological tests may be conducted in some cases
  • X-ray imaging may be done to analyze changes in the bone structure and diagnose fractures of the tailbone, if any
  • MRI scan may be required to detect spinal infections or tumors that may have affected the tailbone

Treatment

  • Prescription of non-steroidal anti-inflammatory medicines
  • Heat or ice packs may provide relief from pain
  • In case the pain is severe and persistent, cortisone injections may be injected directly into the affected part
  • The patient may be advised to sit on a special donut shaped pillow (coccyx cushion) to eliminate pressure from the tailbone
  • Ultrasound therapy may be helpful in controlling the pain
  • Physical therapy may be recommended
  • Coccygectomy- A surgical procedure that involves extracting the affected part of the tailbone.

For treatment of tailbone pain and other spine conditions, visit OrthoTexas, Frisco. To schedule an appointment with the orthopedic surgeons in Frisco, TX, you can call at (214) 618 - 5502.

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Fixed Sagittal Imbalance: Orthopedic Frisco

by Administrator 24. January 2017 19:44

Fixed Sagittal Imbalance (FSI) is a medical condition that affects the spine. Sagittal refers to the anteroposterior (front and back) view of the spine when observed from the side. The normal human spine has a slight curve which gives it an ‘S’ shape. The forward bend in the upper spine is called Kyphotic and the inward bend in the lower spine is called lordotic. These curves help in maintaining spinal balance besides positioning the center of gravity above the pelvis and hips. In some cases, either of the two curves may be exaggerated, causing the individual to bend either forward or backwards. This condition is termed as Fixed Sagittal Imbalance, implying that the sagittal balance is not correct and prohibits the individual from standing upright.

The condition can be categorized as follows:

  • Flatback Syndrome - In this case, the lower back loses the inward curve and the thoracic spine stands out prominently. This results in forward shifting of the center of gravity.
  • Kyphosis - It is characterized by an increase in the thoracic curve leading to the development of a hunch back

Causes

  • Osteoporosis- Weakening of the bones may affect spinal shape and stability
  • Surgical fusion of the lumbar vertebrae may result in FSI
  • Chronic Degenerative Disc Disease may result in loss of spine height and is a potential cause of Lordosis
  • Ankylosing Spondylitis is an inflammatory disease that makes the spine stiff and increases the risk for Kyphosis
  • Congenital defects in the spine
  • Direct trauma
  • Spinal implants such as rods used to correct problems like Scoliosis
  • Neuromuscular disorders such as Cerebral Palsy

Symptoms Of Fixed Sagittal Imbalance

  • Difficulty in standing straight
  • Daily activities may be hampered due to loss of balance
  • Shoulder and head may lunge forward
  • Hips may be pushed backwards while moving or standing
  • Abnormal gait
  • Pain may be felt in the lower back
  • Fatigue sets in easily
  • Numbness in the limbs as the spinal nerves may get stressed

Diagnosis Of Fixed Sagittal Imbalance

  • X-ray imaging to analyze the changes in the spine
  • MRI may be done to evaluate the soft tissue structures and degree of curvature
  • CT scans may be required to check for infections in the spine and get a detailed image of the anatomical structures
  • Physical examination may be conducted to assess the loss of function, change in gait and posture
  • The patient’s medical history may be taken into consideration to confirm the diagnosis

Treatment For Fixed Sagittal Imbalance

  • Osteotomy or surgical removal of a piece of bone to improve the flexibility of the spine
  • Spinal instrumentation- Surgery may be done to stabilize the spine using a bone graft and promote stability
  • Screws, rods and pins may be inserted surgically to hold the spine in correct position. This is called spinal fixation
  • Physical therapy may be recommended post-surgery to help the patient regain spine movement and flexibility as well as strengthen the supporting muscles.

For treatment of Fixed Sagittal Imbalance, visit OrthoTexas, Frisco. To schedule an appointment with the spine specialists, you can call at (214) 618 - 5502.

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Back Pain Prevention Tips

by Administrator 16. January 2017 10:58

The spine is made up of 33 small bones divided into cervical, thoracic and lumbar regions. Its major function is to protect the muscles and nerves as well as provide stiffness to the upper body. Any misalignment or deformity of the vertebrae may lead to pain and discomfort. The symptoms may radiate from the back to other parts of the body like shoulders, legs or hips. Back pain may occur due to several reasons, poor posture and excess weight being the most common of all. Other factors contributing to back pain include muscle tear, muscle spasms, Herniated Disc and spinal injuries. Pregnant women, elderly and people having sitting jobs are more susceptible to experience back pain.

Tips To Prevent Back Pain

  • Excess weight may shift body’s center of gravity which puts additional strain on the back, leading to pain. Exercising regularly can help to keep the body in shape and muscles in an active state.
  • Sleep sideways than lying flat on the back. Sleeping in this position increases blood circulation and does not put pressure on the back. It is a highly recommended position for pregnant women.
  • Bad posture may strain the muscles as well as put pressure on the spine which may constrict the blood vessels and nerves. Therefore, you should maintain proper posture while sitting, standing and walking to keep the spinal curves in their natural shape
  • Quit smoking as it reduces blood flow to the spinal region and increases the risk of back pain.
  • Improper lifting of  heavy objects may strain the lower back muscles which hinders movement and causes pain
  • Wear good fit shoes with flat cushioned soles which provide proper arch support and distribute weight evenly while walking.
  • Increase the intake of calcium and vitamin D to prevent age related degeneration of spinal vertebrae, thereby reducing the risk of back pain.
  • Keep a pillow under your knee in case you sleep on your back as it reduces stress on the spine and maintains natural curve of your body.
  • Do not over stretch your body during workouts. Gradually increase the intensity of physical activity to avoid sprains and strains.
  • Use support at the waist level for example a cushion while sitting, which will help you to sit straight
  • Perform core muscle strengthening exercises. regularly They make abdominal and side muscles stronger which help the spine to bend from the front and maintain its natural curvature
  • Frequent travelers must carry a lumbar support pillow to support their lower back and try carrying heavy luggage in bags having wheels rather carrying them on back.

OrthoTexas, Frisco provides complete treatment for acute and chronic back pain. To schedule an appointment with our spine specialists, you can call at (214) 618 - 5502.

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Stiff Neck: Causes, Symptoms And Treatment

by Administrator 24. December 2016 09:01

The cervical spine consists of bones, cervical vertebrae and muscles. Due to overuse or maintaining a poor posture for prolonged periods, the muscles in the neck may become stiff and painful. This may result in limited motion and severe discomfort. The symptoms may last from a few weeks to months depending upon the severity and lifestyle of the patient. In some cases, the pain may radiate to arms, upper back and shoulders.

Causes

  • Slouching in the chair while sitting
  • Keeping the head hung forward while staring at a computer screen
  • Sleeping in an improper position
  • Using a pillow that is either too hard or soft
  • Neck injury due to an automobile accident
  • Falling from a height
  • Conditions like Osteoarthritis, Herniated Disc or Bone spurs
  • Infection in the cervical spine

Symptoms

  • Pain and stiffness in the neck
  • Headache
  • Inflammation in the neck and shoulder muscles
  • Bruising due to an injury
  • Numbness or tingling
  • Weakness in the neck muscles

Diagnosis

The doctor may ask the patient to describe the extent of pain and its location. The patient may explain if he is experiencing pain in the shoulders, arms or the upper back. The patient’s daily schedule may be noted such as if he uses a computer for prolonged periods, or suffered a neck injury.
A physical exam may help the doctor to check for muscle spasms. He may palpate the neck as well as shoulder and ask the patient to move the head to examine the range of motion.
A cervical X-Ray or an MRI scan may be conducted to detect fracture, bone spurs, slip disc or damaged muscles.

Treatment

Non Surgical Treatment

  • Rest: The patient may be advised to refrain from any type of activities that may lead to pain and stiffness. These may include sports or heavy-weight lifting.
  • Exercises: The doctor may suggest some stretching as well as strengthening exercises that help to condition the muscles, improve flexibility and allow smooth movement of the neck.
  • Medication: NSAIDs and pain relieving medicines may be prescribed. Certain topical medications may be recommended to relieve pain. Steroid injections may be administered in severe cases.
  • Cervical Pillows: They may help to realign the spine, support the neck and improve the symptoms of Stiff Neck.

Discectomy: The procedure involves removal of a damaged disc from the cervical spine. To fill the gap and regain stability of the neck, the doctor may perform spinal fusion or insert an artificial disc. In case the pain is caused due to a bone spur, it may be surgically removed to provide relief.

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Upper Back Pain: Orthopedic Treatment In Frisco, TX

by Administrator 27. November 2016 09:39

Upper Back or Thoracic Spine is the region between the neck and the lower back which helps to maintain stability. It also provides a protective covering to the internal organs of the chest. The range of motion is limited in this part because it is attached to the rib cage. Upper back pain is commonly associated with headache, stiff neck and shoulders.

Causes  

  • Maintaining poor posture for long periods
  • Injury or trauma to the upper back
  • Being overweight
  • Sitting in front of computer for several hours
  • Little or no exercise
  • Improper lifting technique
  • Weak and fatigued muscles
  • Carrying heavy back pack while walking

Symptoms

  • Painful and inflamed muscles
  • Stiff neck and shoulders
  • Numb and tender spots in shoulder blades
  • Headache and muscle spasms
  • In severe cases, weakness in arms or legs
  • Limited range of motion

Diagnosis

  • Physical examination: The doctor may diagnose the condition by conducting a physical examination of the spine. He may ask the patient about any injuries sustained that could be causing the pain. Certain blood tests may be conducted to rule out other possible reasons of the condition.
  • Advanced tests: An X-Ray, CT scan and MRI test may be recommended by the doctor to examine the bone alignment and determine the underlying cause of pain.

Treatment

Non-surgical treatment

  • Ice and heat therapy: Applying ice on the affected area can help to relax the muscles and relieve pain. Heat therapy can also be beneficial in reducing discomfort.  
  • Stretching: Practicing certain exercises as recommended by the doctor can help to improve blood circulation and reduce stiffness in the muscles. These exercises can also strengthen the spine muscles.
  • Rest: Sudden trigger of upper back pain can be improved by taking rest for a few days. Maintaining proper posture while sleeping may help to relieve the stressed muscles.
  • Medication: The doctor may prescribe anti-inflammatory medications to reduce pain. Muscle relaxants may also be given to treat spasms. Cortisone injections may be administered in case of severe pain.

Surgical treatment

Surgery may be recommended if non-surgical treatment fails to provide relief. The surgeon may use bone grafts, screws, rods and plates to join two vertebrate in the upper back. This can help to provide stability to the spine.

For effective treatment of upper back pain, visit the spine specialists at OrthoTexas, Frisco. To schedule an appointment with the orthopedic surgeons, call at (214) 618 – 5502.

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