What is myofascial pain syndrome?

Myofascial pain syndrome is a chronic pain disorder. In this condition, pressure on sensitive points in your muscles (trigger points) causes pain in the muscle and sometimes in seemingly unrelated parts of your body. This is called referred pain.

This syndrome typically occurs after a muscle has been contracted repetitively. This can be caused by repetitive motions used in jobs or hobbies or by stress-related muscle tension.

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The brachioradialis muscle is located in your forearm, this muscle is responsible for helping to flex the elbow during semi pronation. Because of this it is sometimes called your drinking muscle. trigger points in this muscle will cause pain to refer into the elbow, down the forearm and into the hand. When severe enough trigger point pain can event travel up the arm.

DeQuervain’s Disease

DeQ

Tendons are strong, fibrous bands of tissue connecting muscles to bones. Some tendons are covered by a protective, lubricated insulation called a “synovial sheath.” The two tendons on the thumb-side of your wrist that extend and abduct your thumb into a “hitchhiker” position are covered by a sheath. Normally, these tendons move freely within this covering, much like a sword sliding through a sheath. If these tendons and sheaths are forced to repetitively rub against the bones of your wrist, they can become painfully swollen. This condition is called De Quervain’s tenosynovitis.

The pain of De Quervain’s tenosynovitis may begin abruptly, but more commonly starts gradually and increases over time. The pain is provoked by movements of your thumb or wrist. In more severe cases, you may notice swelling on the outside of your wrist. Some patients complain of “catching” or a slight “squeaking” sound while moving their wrist.

Activities like gardening, knitting, cooking, playing a musical instrument, carpentry, walking a pet on a leash, texting, video gaming and sports like golf, volleyball, fly fishing and racquet sports are known triggers. The condition was once known as “Washer woman’s sprain,” since wringing out wet clothes can trigger the problem. Lifting infants or children by placing your outstretched finger and thumb beneath their armpit has led to the nicknames of “Mommy thumb” or “Baby wrist.”

The condition strikes women much more frequently than men. It typically affects middle- age adults and is more slightly common in African-Americans, patients with diabetes or rheumatoid arthritis may be at higher risk for this problem.

Many patients will experience resolution of their symptoms through conservative care, like the type provided in our office. You should avoid lifting, grasping and pinching movements, especially when your wrist is bent toward either side. You may need to find alternate ways to lift children and perform work, sport and leisure activities. Video game players and those who text should take frequent breaks and try to hold their wrists straighter. Avoid wearing tight wristbands. Applying ice to your wrist for 10 minutes every hour or performing an “ice massage” (freeze a paper cup filled with water, tear off the bottom to expose the ice, massage over the tendons in a figure-eight pattern for 6-10 minutes, taking breaks as needed) can provide relief.

Patients who have severe pain or swelling are less likely to respond to conservative care. These patients may require a cortisone injection to relieve their pain, however, surgery is rarely necessary. If you or someone you know is experiencing any of these symptoms, give our office a call.

Trigger point massage therapy.

Trigger points are hyper irritable knots found in muscle tissue. These points form in a muscle due to overload stress. Trigger points can form anywhere, in any muscle. Once formed they irritate sensory nerves and produce pain, refered pain, weakness, and stiffness. Trigger points will also mimic symptoms of other conditions such as “sciatica” or Carple tunnel syndrome. Trigger points will not go away on there own, they must be manually released with hands on techniques like trigger point massage.

Fascial planes.

fascial connective tissue runs throughout all the bodies layers. It gives the body shape and function. Fascial litterally connects every part of your together. During movement when one part of the body moves, the body as a whole responds. Functionally the only tissue that can facilitate such responsiveness is the connective tissue. When one area of the body gets restricted or damaged, the body as a whole can become dysfunctional by setting up compensation patterns.

How Does Laser Work? 

Over 2000 published research studies demonstrate:

• Laser therapy improves blood flow and lymphatic drainage
• Laser therapy has a strengthening effect on tissue repair
• It is an effective means of relief for many pain syndromes
• It can improve immune response
• Enhanced nerve regeneration & function
• Increased microcirculation & vasodilation
• Increased lymphatic flow
• Increased collagen production
• Increases the speed, quality and tensile strength of tissue repair
• Reduced inflammation
• Enhanced angiogenesis (creation of new blood vessels)

 

Call us today for more information about Class IV laser therapy and how it can help you!

 

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