Author Archives: aenriquez

Overpronation and Underpronation

By  aenriquez  published  January 2, 2020

One of the healthiest forms of exercise available is simply going for a run. It is inexpensive, available almost anywhere, and good for your heart, lungs, and circulatory system. By extension, it is a good exercise for your muscles and your overall well being.

 

However, there is certainly a slew of injuries associated with running, most of them, of course, associated with your legs and feet. Overdoing it can cause muscle strains and shin splints, which includes stress fractures. Tendons and ligaments can be injured by overuse or over-extension.

 

To keep injuries to a minimum it helps to understand the concepts of overpronation and underpronation and how those conditions can result in injuries down the line. Pronation, which can also be termed neutral pronation, is the word given to how much the arch of your foot collapses upon impact, which is to say when you walk or run.

Neutral pronation is the term given to arches that collapse a normal amount, while overpronation defines arches that collapse too much. Underpronation, also called supination, defines arches that do not collapse enough.

 

The arch of your foot does several things, but the primary purpose is to absorb some of the shocks that occur as your foot collides with the ground when you walk or run. It also provides a springing effect as you push off from the ground. Mostly, however, it provides for a cushion to protect your foot from the many, many times it strikes the ground.

 

Overpronation

Overpronation is also the term used for being flat-footed. In this case, the arch provides limited cushioning for the foot as it hits the ground. This can lead to shin splints, stress fractures, and over-use injuries to your knees, hips, ankle, and heel.

 

An overly excessively inward roll of the footmarks overpronation. Put another way, with overpronation, the impact of walking or running is concentrated unduly on the side of the foot that includes the big toe.

 

Underpronation or Supination

When the arch of the foot does not collapse enough (supination), this forces the foot to roll outward as you walk or run. In this situation, the foot strikes the ground first with the side of the foot that includes the smallest toe – the pinky toe. This can result in a loss of balance, which can lead to other injuries.

 

Testing Your Impact

There are several standard tests you can do yourself to figure out if your feet hit the ground at a neutral position or in one that is in an overpronation or supination position. One of these is called the Wet Test.

Wet Test

Take a dry piece of cardboard and lay it on the ground. Get your feet wet, but not dripping wet and walk on the cardboard. Look at the outline of the water you leave behind.

 

If your footprint is very thin in the portion of the arch – the portion between the ball of the foot and the heel — then this indicates a supination impact when you walk or run. If the middle section is especially thick, it indicates an overpronation impact.

 

You can do the same test by walking on a sandy beach or in a sandbox. First, smooth out the sand, then examine your footprints after you walk across it. Semi-firm, moist sand works best for this test.

The Wear Test

Another way to test your foot’s impact on the ground is to simply look at the bottom of your sneakers or shoes and examining the wear. Is most of the worn rubber or leather on the inside of the foot (supination) or the outside (overpronation) or evenly divided (neutral)?

When To Seek Help

Seek help anytime pain in the hip becomes acute when you lose the ability to walk or raise a leg, when you cannot bear the pain and when the hip looks misshapen or deformed.

In Tempe, call FXRX Orthopaedics & Bracing at 480-449-3979 for an appointment.

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What is Spinal Stenosis

By  aenriquez  published  December 30, 2019

Spinal stenosis is a condition of the spine that is most often associated with aging and is sometimes the result of arthritis. It can also exacerbate conditions like arthritis and bone spurs.

 

Spinal stenosis is often marked by a narrowing of the spine, which causes weakness and can cause pressure on nerves in the region. This shows up as lower back pain, but it also shows up as numbness or pain in the lower back or the neck. Numbness or a tingling sensation can also occur in the arms, legs, and buttocks.

 

Back Pain

 

Back pain can be very uncomfortable, and it can be disabling. Your back holds you up, helps you maintain balance, and allows for almost every motion you make.


The spinal cord is made up of bone segments separated by rubbery cushions called discs. Spinal stenosis can include weakness that raises the risk of a herniated disc – what is sometimes called a ruptured disc. This is not only painful unto itself, but it could allow one vertebra to rub against the other, decreasing flexibility and contributing to bone deterioration.

 

Treating Spinal Stenosis

 

There are several medical strategies for treating spinal stenosis ranging from a minimal response of taking over-the-counter pain medication, such as ibuprofen or aspirin, to a surgery called a laminectomy.

 

Medications

 

A pharmaceutical response to spinal stenosis could start with over-the-counter medications and the use of muscle relaxers. If these don’t work, doctors may recommend a stronger pain management strategy, including the use of prescription pain medication. With any medicine, discuss with your doctor the risks associated with that compound and be honest about your personal history with drugs or other addictive substances.

 

Corticosteroid Injections

 

Corticosteroid injections – often involving prednisone – can be directed at the area where the pain is occurring. It is used to reduce inflammation. It is highly effective but has to be used sparingly. Discuss with your physician how often corticosteroid treatment is recommended for you.

 

Anesthetics

 

Anesthetics involves the use of nerve blockers, administered by injection, which can block the pain. This treatment is sometimes referred to as a nerve or neuron blockade.

 

Physical Therapy and Exercise

 

Physical therapy can help you adapt to a medical condition and improve functioning capacities that are restricted by various injuries and illnesses. Physical therapy can also include discussions on how to lose and keep off excess weight.

 

Weight Loss

 

Weight loss is a fundamental strategy for numerous health conditions, including spinal stenosis. Weight loss is also critical for heart health and for lowering blood pressure, which reduces the risk of a stroke. Losing weight also lowers your risk for adult-onset diabetes, which is often called Type II Diabetes. 

 

Laminectomy

 

Your physician may recommend several different surgical procedures depending on the condition that develops as a result of spinal stenosis. You could require surgery to repair or strengthen spinal vertebrae or to correct a herniated disc. 

 

However, the most common surgery for spinal stenosis is called a laminectomy. This is the removal of the lamina, which is at the roof of the spinal canal. A laminectomy is also the term used for the removal of vertebral bone spurs.

 

 

When To Seek Help

 

Seek help anytime pain in the shin persists or alters your lifestyle. 

 

In Tempe, call FXRX Orthopaedics & Bracing at 480-449-3979 for an appointment.

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Shin Pain

By  aenriquez  published  December 27, 2019

Shin pain, which occurs in the front of the lower portion of your leg, is often called shin splints. This is a common overuse injury that can occur when someone has increased the amount of running they do or changed from a relatively soft surface for running (grass, for example) to one that his hard, like a paved road or sidewalk. This overuse injury can also be the result of running or jumping for too long.

 

Shin splints can be the sign of a serious injury, most often a stress fracture that will persist and could even grow worse if not tended to correctly and immediately. If you continue to overuse your lower leg bones – the tibia and the fibula – without proper treatment, the fracture could grow worse and even more painful.

 

Shin pain can also be the result of overuse of muscles and tendons that are involved in lower leg activities. The bone may not be the culprit at all. It can be difficult to tell the difference without proper diagnostic equipment providing images of the bone structure.

 

Overpronation

 

Pain in your shins, in this case, at the backside of your leg, can also occur due to what is called overpronation. Pronation refers to the amount the arch of your foot collapses when you walk or run. Overpronation can cause the muscles in the back of your calf to over-extend, which can result in painful muscles or strained tendons.

 

Medial tibial stress syndrome

 

This is a condition that occurs when the muscles located on the inner side of your tibia bone are inflamed. The tibia is the larger of the two muscles in your calf, located in the inner side, while the smaller bone that runs alongside if it is called the fibula.

 

Three Compartments

 

Three compartments also define the calf. The anterior compartment includes muscles that allow you to point your foot towards your body, while the lateral compartment includes muscles that will enable you to point your foot away from your body. Meanwhile, the posterior compartment involves muscles that allow you to point your foot and toes downward.

 

Shin Splint Symptoms

 

While a stress fracture is relatively rare, compared to a muscle or tendon strain, shin splints can be quite painful. If you have a fracture, the pain (and swelling, if there is any) is likely to be localized and specific. The pain will increase as you try to touch the location of the fracture. Muscle and tendon pain tends to be more regional – more spread out over the area where those tissues reside. 

 

Diagnosis

 

Diagnosing shin splints includes an examination of the leg along with an interview by the doctor, who will ask about your recent activity levels. If warranted, the doctor will order an X-ray, an MRI, or a bone scan to verify or rule out the possibility of a stress fracture. A test can also be ordered that measures the pressure in your lower leg compartments. This test measures pressure when your leg is at rest and just after exercising.

 

Treatment

 

Several steps can be taken to treat shin splints. These steps include:

 

Resting the leg, allowing for tissues to heal. 

Applying a cold compress to the area in pain after exercise. This might include ice massages, which involves rubbing ice on the area for 5 to 10 minutes and repeating several times.

Over-the-counter anti-inflammatory medications, such as aspirin, ibuprofen, and others

Braces, shoe implants or other supportive orthotics

Reduced exercise until the pain subsides, then a gradual increase

 

When To Seek Help

 

Seek help anytime pain in the shin persists or alters your lifestyle.

 

In Tempe, call FXRX Orthopaedics & Bracing at 480-449-3979 for an appointment.

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Common Golfing Injuries

By  aenriquez  published  December 5, 2019

The game of golf has a reputation for being slow, deliberately careful and so non-violent. But many injuries occur when playing golf. Generally, these are repetitive use injuries that occur by repeating the same motion over and over until wear and tear gradually result in some type of injury.

 

Here is a list of three common injuries that golfers sustain playing the grand old game and some reasons that they occur.

 

Rotator cuff tear

Golfer’s elbow

Hook of hamate fracture

 

 

Rotator Cuff Tear

 

The rotator cuff is the name given to a group of muscles and tendons that support the shoulder, basically holding the joint into place. The reason this is necessary is that the socket of the shoulder joint is not an all-encompassing structure; it is a shallow dish-shaped bone that has evolved because the shoulder is given a wide range of motion. The knee or the elbow (and many other joints) bend in only one direction, while the shoulder is relatively freewheeling owing to the structure of the joint.

 

A rotator cuff tear can be debilitating, causing severe pain when you try to lift your arm, especially if you try to lift your arm above your head. That is where the problem begins. A rotator cuff tear, it follows, mostly afflicts people who work repetitively above their heads, such as painters, sheet-rock installers or carpenters. It is also common among baseball players, tennis players and swimmers.

 

Treatment

 

Once diagnosed, treatment usually starts with rest, putting ice or heat compresses on the shoulder and physical therapy designed to stretch the tendons and get them to relax. More involved treatment includes injections to help mitigate pain.

 

There are also a variety of surgical options for severe rotator cuff injuries, including arthroscopic tendon repair and open tendon repair, which is more invasive, requiring a longer surgical opening.

 

Golfer’s Elbow

 

Golfer’s elbow is not restricted to golfers and maybe more commonly known as tennis elbow. But it’s not restricted to just golfers and tennis players. It is associated with any activity that includes repeated striking of something by extending your forearm. As such, you can develop tennis elbow while roofing a house, as the many hammering motions can bring on this condition.

 

Golfer’s elbow is an affliction of a tendon but is mostly felt on the bony protrusion of your elbow or this area plus the upper portion of your forearm. While the injury is sustained by many relatively mild concussive strikes with the forearm (a golf ball or a tennis ball is not very heavy, after all), it can be very painful once you reach the threshold and the injury develops.

 

Treatment

 

Treatment of golfer’s elbow includes taking time off from golf for a while to allow the tendon to heal. Frequently, ice compacts are used to reduce pain. 

 

 A conveniently placed brace – a band – is often deployed. This is positioned just under the elbow and it re-positions the tendon so it no longer sustains impact when you use it. This can be very effective. 

 

 Also, physical therapy, pain management and other techniques are used. Rarely does this condition require surgery to correct, in part because it becomes too painful to repeat the motion and forces people to stop the painful activity and giving the area time to heal.

 

Hook of Hamate Fracture

 

The hook of hamate is a bone. It is the carpal bone at the base of the pinky or little finger on the outside portion of your wrist. A fracture of this bone can be defined as a broken wrist.

 

The fracture can develop from a sudden trauma or from repeatedly striking an object, such as a golf ball, with the same motion over and over. The pain can come on suddenly and result in the inability to grip tightly to an object.

 

Treatment

 

Once diagnosed with an X-ray or a CT Scan, a fractured wrist is often treated with a brace of a cast to restrict or stabilize movement. Pain management may also be required when the injury first occurs. Surgery is usually not required.

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What’s Worse: A Sprain, A Strain or a Fracture?

By  aenriquez  published  November 12, 2019

People often debate this ancillary medical question: Which is worse, breaking an ankle or spraining an ankle? For all of that, what’s the difference between the two?

 

To answer those questions, let’s review all the possibilities. From a medical point of view, the question “which is the worst” of two non-lethal injuries is the same as what injury limits functioning the most, which one hurts the most or which is the most disfiguring.

 

Furthermore, there are three types of medical designations for routine injuries of this type: Sprains, breaks, and strains. Here’s the difference between these three:

 

 Strain

 

A strain is caused by sudden over-stretching, twisting or of a muscle or a tendon or both. A tendon is a fibrous band of tissue that connects a muscle to a bone.

 

Strains can be severe, causing intense pain, muscle spasms, inflammation, loss of strength and cramping. A strain can be either mild or severe with the worse cases involving tearing of either muscles or tendons, including tendons that detach from muscles or bones.

 

Strains commonly occur at the back of the hamstring muscle, which runs along the back of your thighs. A hamstring can be pulled by overstretching the leg, which might occur in running and then either accelerating quickly or jumping suddenly. Hamstrings are common to any sport where running is required.

 

Healing from a strained muscle or tendon

 

Healing from a strain can take up to six months or more. One of the problems with these types of injuries is that fully healing takes so long that re-injury is common.

 

The long and the short comes down to the time it takes to heal and the risk of re-injury

 

Sprains

 

A sprain, technically, is an overstretching of ligaments, which connect two bones, often wrapping around two bones of a joint to hold the joint into place. As such, injuries to knees, ankles and other joints frequently are sprains, rather than strains.

 

A sprain can be very painful, causing the area to swell up and turn various shades of blue, black and yellow or red. The intensity of a sprain depends on the severity of the injury, which could involve rupturing a ligament or having it separate from the bone it is expected to support. Severe sprains might include dislocation of the joint.

 

Fractures or breaks

 

A broken bone can be very painful, but it is not always so. While a clear break is certainly painful, fractures can be very slight (often called a hairline fracture) and relatively small. There is usually some pain involved with a slight fracture, but the area could also experience numbness without much pain.

 

Severity

 

The severity of an injury is dependent on related factors. How much does it hurt? How much does treatment cost? How long does it take to heal? Is the injury likely to reoccur?

 

By several of these measurements sprains and strains could be said to be worse than breaks or fractures, if there is no surgery involved. Treatment of the fracture might be more expensive initially if a cast is required for stabilization, but severe sprains are also treated with stabilizing casts.

 

Here’s the breakdown. As far as pain, it is hard to conclude either of these is more painful than the other. A broken bone can be extremely painful at first, but a hamstring pull is often just as painful. A badly sprained ankle can also be painful. We have to consider this a virtual three-way tie.

 

The long and the short comes down to the time it takes to heal and the risk of re-injury. In this case, a sprain can take even longer to heal than a fracture or a broken bone and is far more likely to reoccur. A healed bone is almost as strong as one that never broke in the first place, whereas the soft tissue damage from a sprain or strain can persist for a long time, increasing the chances of re-injury.

 

How can you tell the difference?

 

Modern medical imaging (an X-ray or a CT Scan) is used to diagnose a sprain, strain or fracture, but you can make an educated guess when the injury occurs. Sprains and strains hurt primarily in an area of soft tissue, while bone pain (and swelling) occurs where the bone is the primary structure. Secondly, a broken bone or a fracture often results in numbness, where a sprain and/or strain do not.

 

 Help!

 

Any sprain, strain, fracture or break should be seen by a doctor as soon as possible to prevent further injury. Let us help you return to an active lifestyle with minimum pain. Call FXRX Orthopaedics and Bracing in Phoenix, Az., at 480-449-FXRX.

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Common Golfing Injuries

By  aenriquez  published  November 8, 2019

The game of golf has a reputation for being slow, deliberately careful and so non-violent. But many injuries occur when playing golf. Generally, these are repetitive use injuries that occur by repeating the same motion over and over until wear and tear gradually result in some type of injury.

 

Here is a list of three common injuries that golfers sustain playing the grand old game and some reasons that they occur.

 

  • Rotator cuff tear
  • Golfer’s elbow
  • Hook of hamate fracture

 

Golfer’s elbow is not restricted to golfers and maybe more commonly known as tennis elbow

Rotator Cuff Tear

 

The rotator cuff is the name given to a group of muscles and tendons that support the shoulder, basically holding the joint into place. The reason this is necessary is that the socket of the shoulder joint is not an all-encompassing structure; it is a shallow dish-shaped bone that has evolved because the shoulder is given a wide range of motion. The knee or the elbow (and many other joints) bend in only one direction, while the shoulder is relatively freewheeling owing to the structure of the joint.

 

A rotator cuff tear can be debilitating, causing severe pain when you try to lift your arm, especially if you try to lift your arm above your head. That is where the problem begins. A rotator cuff tear, it follows, mostly afflicts people who work repetitively above their heads, such as painters, sheet-rock installers, or carpenters. It is also common among baseball players, tennis players and swimmers.

 

Treatment

 

Once diagnosed, treatment usually starts with rest, putting ice or heat compresses on the shoulder and physical therapy designed to stretch the tendons and get them to relax. More involved treatment includes injections to help mitigate pain.

 

There are also a variety of surgical options for severe rotator cuff injuries, including arthroscopic tendon repair and open tendon repair, which is more invasive, requiring a longer surgical opening.

 

Golfer’s Elbow

 

Golfer’s elbow is not restricted to golfers and maybe more commonly known as tennis elbow. But it’s not restricted to just golfers and tennis players. It is associated with any activity that includes repeated striking of something by extending your forearm. As such, you can develop tennis elbow while roofing a house, as the many hammering motions can bring on this condition.

 

Golfer’s elbow is an affliction of a tendon but is mostly felt on the bony protrusion of your elbow or this area plus the upper portion of your forearm. While the injury is sustained by many relatively mild concussive strikes with the forearm (a golf ball or a tennis ball is not very heavy, after all), it can be very painful once you reach the threshold, and the injury develops.

 

Treatment

Treatment of golfer’s elbow includes taking time off from golf for a while to allow the tendon to heal. Frequently, ice compacts are used to reduce pain.

 

A conveniently placed brace – a band – is often deployed. This is positioned just under the elbow, and it re-positions the tendon, so it no longer sustains impact when you use it. This can be very effective.

 

Also, physical therapy, pain management, and other techniques are used. Rarely does this condition require surgery to correct, in part because it becomes too painful to repeat the motion and forces people to stop the painful activity and to give the area time to heal.

 

Hook of Hamate Fracture

 

The hook of hamate is a bone. It is the carpal bone at the base of the pinky or little finger on the outside portion of your wrist. A fracture of this bone can be defined as a broken wrist.

 

The fracture can develop from a sudden trauma or from repeatedly striking an object, such as a golf ball, with the same motion over and over. The pain can come on suddenly and result in the inability to grip tightly to an object.

 

Treatment

 

Once diagnosed with an X-ray or a CT Scan, a fractured wrist is often treated with a brace or a cast to restrict or stabilize movement. Pain management may also be required when the injury first occurs. Surgery is usually not needed.

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Carpal Tunnel Syndrome

By  aenriquez  published  October 28, 2019

Carpal tunnel syndrome is frequently associated with the age of computers due to the sudden increase in the number of people typing for long periods and due to the new configuration of keyboards. This painful nerve disorder is most often attributed to repetitive motion that puts pressure on the median nerve that goes through the carpal tunnel on its way from a forearm arm to one of your hands.

 

If you catch carpal tunnel early enough, it is possible to relieve pain and avoid further damage by holding your wrists at the proper angle when you type, which generally means raising your wrists higher when you type. Before computers came around, typists developed carpal tunnel on occasion, but typewriters were vertically tiered, making it more natural for the typist to hold their wrists in the correct position.

Persons with carpal tunnel often have difficulty sensing hot and cold with their fingers or hands

Changing position does not always relieve carpal tunnel syndrome, although you can buy a pad that is placed in front of your keyboard in a manner that holds your wrists higher. You should consult a doctor or a physical therapist before the condition grows worse, however.

 

What is Carpal Tunnel?

 

Carpal tunnel is damage to the median nerve due to pressure or repeated pinching placed on the nerve. Patients typically feel this syndrome through tingling fingers, numbness in hands or fingers, and a burning type of pain in the wrist.

 

Causes of Carpal Tunnel

 

While repetitive motion is often the cause of carpal tunnel, there are metabolic diseases that can raise someone’s risk of carpal tunnel or create carpal tunnel syndrome in the absence of repetitive motion. Possible causes include:

 

  • Diabetes
  • Obesity
  • Pregnancy
  • Arthritis
  • Hyperthyroidism

 

Diagnosis

 

Diagnosis begins with a discussion of your symptoms with a qualified physician. The doctor will then do a thorough study of your hand and fingers to test range of motion and pain. The tests may include having the patient bend their wrists. Delicate probes will be used to see if the patient can feel soft touches.

 

The doctor will also look for signs of muscle atrophy or cramping. If swelling has occurred, the wrist may look discolored and swollen, and it could feel warm to the touch. Also, the doctor may hand you a glass of warm or cold water to test your sensitivity to temperature. Persons with carpal tunnel often have difficulty sensing hot and cold with their fingers or hands.

 

Persons with carpal tunnel also lose strength and flexibility in their hands, causing them to develop “the dropsies.” If you find yourself dropping objects you formerly held with confidence, make an appointment to have that checked out.

 

Treatment

 

There are several options for treating carpal tunnel if it is caught early that can mitigate the pain or allow your median nerve time to heal on its own. It is important to intervene early, however, before the syndrome develops into a chronic condition. Treatment options for early stages of carpal tunnel include:

 

  • Wearing a splint or a brace on your wrist
  • Avoiding the repetitive motion for a while to give the nerve time to heal
  • Wearing a cast to stabilize the wrist
  • Acupuncture
  • Physical therapy – including changing position while you type
  • Chiropractic intervention
  • Pain management

 

Surgery

 

If the carpal tunnel becomes chronic or severely disabling, surgery may be tried to correct the problem. The most common surgery performed for carpal tunnel syndrome is called a carpal tunnel release. It involves cutting the band of tissue that surrounds the tunnel, which then relieves the pressure or pinching on that nerve. It takes up to three months to fully heal from this type of surgery.

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Rotator Cuff Surgery Includes Minimally Invasive Options

By  aenriquez  published  October 22, 2019

A rotator cuff tear is a common injury that occurs from either daily wear and tear of the shoulder or from a sudden trauma that occurs most often from a sports-related injury. The remedy for a rotator cuff tear is to rest the shoulder until it heals, although often surgery is required to repair the tendon or reattach it to the head of the humerus, which is the long bone of the upper arm.

 

The rotator cuff itself is a group of four muscles and tendons that allow for you to lift and rotate your arms. This group of muscles is complex, allowing for a wide range of motion for your arms, which is useful, of course, daily.

The three basic surgical options for rotator cuff repair are open shoulder repair, arthroscopic surgery, and mini-open surgery

Doctors assign two designations for rotator cuff tears. One is a partial tear, which refers to damage to a tendon. The second type is a complete tear. This refers to a tendon that has been torn free of the humerus bone and requires reattachment.

 

Symptoms

 

A rotator cuff tear can be painful, or it can be experienced as weakness in the shoulder with milder discomfort. The general symptoms are:

 

  • Difficulty raising an arm
  • Loss of motion in the shoulder
  • General weakness of the shoulder
  • Mild to severe pain
  • Pain that accompanies specific movement
  • An odd popping sound in your shoulder during movement

 

Treatment

 

Minor rotator cuff tears can be managed with applications of heat or ice to provide pain relief or improved comfort. Also, non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, such as ibuprofen, are recommended. Muscle relaxing and pain medications can also be used during the healing process.

 

Fortunately, if surgery is required, there have been advancements in techniques and equipment over the years that allow for minimally invasive surgery to repair rotator cuff tendons. Not only does this allow for outpatient surgery in many cases, it means quicker recovery times. It also means lower costs.

 

Your doctor will recommend a specific surgery depending on several factors. These include the amount of damage to the tendon, the medical history of the patient, and the doctor’s experiences with the various procedures. Other circumstantial factors could also influence this decision, such as the overall health of the patient or time constraints.

 

Three Surgical Options

 

The three basic surgical options for rotator cuff repair are open shoulder repair, arthroscopic surgery, and mini-open surgery.

 

Open Shoulder Surgery

 

Most often performed in a hospital setting, open shoulder surgery includes a surgical incision that allows the surgeon to view the shoulder muscles and tendons directly. This surgery most often requires the surgeon to detach the deltoid shoulder muscle to get a view of the damaged tendon. As such, this is the more invasive of the surgical options.

 

While performing open shoulder surgery, the surgeon will take advantage of the opportunity to also remove any bone spurs that may have formed on the underside of the acromion. This procedure is called an acromioplasty.

 

This option is chosen when the damage to the tendon is significant, including injuries in which the tendon has become detached from the bone. It is also the option chosen if a tendon replacement is required.

 

Arthroscopic Surgery

 

For arthroscopic surgery, the incision is tiny, just large enough to allow the surgeon to use very thin surgical equipment to repair a damaged tendon. Most often, there are two points of entry. At one point, the surgeon inserts a tiny camera into the shoulder, which will be used to guide the surgical procedure, which the doctor views on a monitor. The second entry point allows for the surgical equipment to be inserted into the area.

 

This is usually done on an outpatient basis at a medical clinic or the doctor’s office.

 

Mini-Open Surgery

 

This surgery includes a combination of open shoulder surgery and arthroscopic surgery. The incision is usually about 3-5 cm long. The advantage of mini-open surgery is that as much of the surgical work is done through arthroscopic equipment so that the deltoid muscle does not have to be detached. However, the incision does allow the doctor to directly view what he is doing for parts of the surgery.

 

 

Rehabilitation and Recovery

 

As with any surgery, there is a period of rest and recovery, which is followed by a rehabilitation period in which the patient begins to adapt to new limitations or to regain strength and flexibility on a gradual basis. During early recovery, pain medication may be prescribed, although any use of opioid pain medication must include a discussion with your doctor on the dangers of pain medication addiction.

 

See a doctor

 

Contact a doctor or visit the emergency room in your area quickly if you suspect a bone infection is occurring. With any of the symptoms above, have a doctor check you out to decide on the necessary course of action.

 

In Tempe, call FXRX Orthopaedics & Bracing at 480-449-3979 for an appointment.

 

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What Causes Hip Pain?

By  aenriquez  published  October 17, 2019

Hip pain is most often associated with growing old. Painful joints just come with the territory. But hip pain can come at any age, and it is important to know when it you can try to take care of it yourself and when to see a doctor for more advanced treatment.

Many people, for example, suffer from bursitis that flares up from time to time, then settles down (or goes into remission) for long periods. When bursitis acts up, it can be difficult to walk even across a standard-sized room. The pain throws your usual gait way out of whack. But one of the ways to treat bursitis is to get that hip joint moving again, which allows the fluids to restore painless movements. By the time you can get to a doctor, the episode is over. Bursitis then stays dormant for a few days, weeks, or months.

Like any bones, a hipbone can fracture or break due to a twist, a fall or a collision

However, the pain of bursitis can undoubtedly be enough to send you the doctor’s office, where more sophisticated treatments are available. At FXRX in Tempe, Arizona, specialists can diagnose and treat bursitis with the most modern equipment and techniques available. It is always worth a visit to the doctors to discuss the best strategy for dealing with painful conditions.

Here are a few other disorders that strike the hip and should undoubtedly prompt you to seek professional help. These are conditions in which a cold compress and ibuprofen are not enough. For these ailments, seek professional advice.

  • Juvenile onset arthritis

This used to be called juvenile rheumatoid arthritis. This condition is painful for a short duration in many cases (a few weeks or months), but other cases are painful for a lifetime. It can lead to abnormal growth and joint problems.

  • Osteoarthritis

This condition can result in debilitating deterioration of the joint.

  • Psoriatic arthritis

While this condition starts with psoriasis of the skin, a common rash, when it appears near joints, the damage to the joints can be debilitating. Treatment should be sought before this condition gets out of hand.

  • Dislocation

A dislocated hip is painful and should be restored as soon as possible. A dislocation of the hip most often occurs as the result of a traumatic injury.

  • Hip fracture

Like any bones, a hipbone can fracture or break due to a twist, a fall or a collision. Medical attention is required to support healing when this occurs.

  • Hip labral tear

The labrum is a cartilage that protects the outside rim of your hip, cushioning the joint during regular use and providing a seal for hold the thighbone in place. However, it can deteriorate from overuse, which occurs among some athletes, ballet dancers, and the elderly.

  • Pinched Nerves

Several pinched or damaged nerves can result in hip pain. These include sciatica, the most extended nerve cell in the body, which runs from your lower back down to your legs. Nerves can also be pinched in the sacroiliitis joints, which are located where your lower spine connects to your pelvic. Another common nerve problem is called a meralgia parensthetica, which concerns the nerve provides sensation for the skin at your thighs.

  • Cancers

Leukemia and bone cancer can both bring about pain in the hips, but many kinds of cancer can become metastatic and lead to bone cancer.

  • Infections

Infections can also result in hip pain.

When To Seek Help

Seek help anytime pain in the hip becomes acute when you lose the ability to walk or raise a leg, when you cannot bear the pain and when the hip looks misshapen or deformed.

In Tempe, call FXRX Orthopaedics & Bracing at 480-449-3979 for an appointment.

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What Is A Torn Meniscus?

By  aenriquez  published  October 9, 2019

The meniscus is a C-shaped cartilage around the knee that separates the shinbone from the thighbone. Cartilage is a smooth tissue that helps keeps bone from rubbing against another bone. Bones rubbing neighboring bones leads to arthritis and other painful joint conditions.

 

A torn meniscus is a very common sports injury, as it is caused when someone twists on their knee with so much stress the cartilage is torn. It is commonly recognized by the popping sound it produces and the immediate pain that is the result.

 

Symptoms

 

A torn meniscus is quite painful and restricts movement of the knee anywhere from a bit to a major amount. Often it is difficult or impossible to straighten the knee with a torn meniscus. Other symptoms, while they may be self-explanatory, include:

 

  • Swelling and redness
  • Stabbing pain in the knee, especially during movement
  • Difficulty straightening the knee
  • Having difficulty moving the kneed to the extent it feels locked in place

Treatment of a torn meniscus usually starts with the basic approach of rest, ice and medication

Immediate treatment

 

Immediate treatment includes taking the weight off the afflicted knee, wrapping it to prevent movement and using crutches or a wheelchair if these are available. Seek medical treatment as soon as possible.

 

Diagnosis

 

The diagnosis cannot be confirmed with an X-ray, because cartilage is not dense enough tissue to show up on X-rays. However, X-rays can rule out bone trauma and, therefore, could help narrow down the diagnosis.

 

Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) can present an image of both hard (bone) tissue and soft (cartilage), which allows it to return images of your meniscus.

 

The third technique for diagnosing a torn meniscus is the use of an arthroscope, which is a small camera with a light that is inserted into your knee. While exploring the knee, doctors could also move ahead with surgical procedures to repair the meniscus or remove damaged tissue.

 

Treatment

 

Treatment of a torn meniscus usually starts with the basic approach of rest, ice and medication. It often means taking a break from physical activities for a while.

 

Rest

 

Rest could entail the use of bandaging or braces to stabilize the knee while it heals. It may be wise to use crutches or a wheelchair to give the knee complete rest.

 

Ice

 

Ice is used to reduce swelling and help with the pain. Ice is best used for 15-30 minutes with the knee in an elevated position.

 

Medication

 

Over-the-counter, non-steroidal anti-inflammatory medication is often used. If the pain is severe, you can discuss with your physician use of more powerful medication.

 

Therapy

 

Physical therapists can work wonders with cartilage damage. This is useful when you heal enough to begin activities again in a manner that does not re-injure the meniscus.

 

Surgery

 

There are two strategies for surgery. Physicians first try to repair the meniscus. If this is not possible, surgeons will remove damaged tissue to allow the functioning cartilage to do its job unimpeded by irreparable tissue.

 

Seeking Help

 

A torn meniscus may require medical intervention to stabilize and repair the damage. In Tempe, call FXRX at 480-449-3979 to make an appointment with a specialist who has extensive experience with this injury.

 

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