All posts in Physical Therapy

Arthroscopic meniscal débridement

Arthroscopic meniscal débridement

May not help patients with degenerative meniscal tears.Arthroscopic meniscal débridement is a commonly performed procedure in patients with degenerative meniscal tears. A recent study reports that arthroscopic surgery did not result in a significant improvement in pain scores in the short term or in the long term. An article written by Moin Khan, MD and others published August 25, 2014 in the CMAJ reviewed 805 patient outcomes for function and pain relief. The study compared surgery with: exercise or physical therapy; NSAIDS plus exercise; steroid injections; or control groups without meniscal débridement (sham treatment).

The authors conclude that the evidence suggests there is no benefit to arthroscopic meniscal débridement for degenerative meniscal tears in comparison to nonoperative treatments or sham treatments in middle-aged patients with mild or no accompanying osteoarthritis.

Informed patients along with their physicians need to carefully weigh the anticipated benefits against the possible harms when considering treatment options.

http://www.cmaj.ca/content/early/2014/08/25/cmaj.140433.full.pdf​

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High Intensity Interval Training

High Intensity Interval Training

High intensity interval training (HIIT) is a form of exercise routine where high intensity/difficulty exercises are alternated with low to moderate ones. This allows for a period of “rest” so that the body can perform at a very high level during the high bursts. This type of exercise is very time efficient, which is great for today’s busy schedules. It affords more gains in aerobic capacity and more calorie and fat burning than a traditional moderately paced exercise.

You can create a plan with running or biking such as going at top speed for 1 minute then slow for 2 minutes and repeating this cycle 5 times for a 15 minute routine. You can also do it with exercises such as squats, pushups, rowing, jump rope, sit ups, or lunges. It just has to be difficult and you will reap the benefits.

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Belly fat is linked to health problems

Belly fat is linked to health problems

Weight can be an indicator of overall health, especially were you’re carrying it. A disproportionate amount of belly fat is a stronger indicator than just obesity of your risk for having type 2 diabetes, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, and heart disease. This is because fat cells can increase hormones and inflammatory substances. Measuring belly fat is done by measuring at the level of the belly button, making sure the measuring tape is straight. If it is over than 40 inches for men or 35 inches for women consider trying to come up with a weight loss plan with your doctor.

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Pilates

Pilates

Pilates is a century old form of exercise developed by Joseph Pilates. Its’ purpose is to build strength and endurance in the core(abdominals, low back, hips, and glutes) allowing for stability, control, and flexibility. It can be done on a mat on the floor or with equipment such as the reformer machine. Pilates aims to work on breathing, alignment, control, core or powerhouse, balance, and coordination. People who perform Pilates regularly note increased posture, endurance, smaller waist lines, and less pain.

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Gardening is a common hobby that is stressful to many body parts such as knees, back, shoulders and neck.

Gardening is a common hobby that is stressful to many body parts such as knees, back, shoulders and neck.

Here are a few tips on how to reduce stress on the body when working outside.
• Warm up first by walking and stretching.
• Alternate positions or activities often.
• Sit on a bucket or stool instead of bending over.
• Use a wheelbarrow as much as possible.
• Plant in elevated potters so that you don’t have to kneel so close to the ground.
• Use proper body mechanics when lifting or pulling anything. Your power should come from the legs, not the back.

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Recovery is an important, and often overlooked part of an exercise routine

Recovery is an important, and often overlooked part of an exercise routine

It is required to allow your body to be healthy to make physical gains. Stretching is required to maintain flexibility of muscles and should be done before and after an exercise routine. Maintaining proper hydration and nutrition is important to refuel the body after exercise.

Cross training is alternating the type of exercise or body parts that you are strengthening. This allows for parts of your body to rest and recover while you exercise others. Lastly, sleep is mandatory to help your body maintain its best function. It is not beneficial to get up early to exercise if you have had less than 7-8 hours of sleep.

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Soreness is an expected response to vigorous exercise

Soreness is an expected response to vigorous exercise

We need to be able to differentiate it from pain, which can have a negative impact of fitness. Muscular soreness is a sign that you are working to your threshold, which will help you make gains. Pain however, is a negative sign that you are passing that threshold, and possibly causing injury.

“No pain no gain” is not the motto that you want to follow when exercising. Muscle soreness often peaks at 24-72 hours and is lessened by light repetitive movement such as biking. Pain is present despite rest and feels more sharp. If it continues longer that 1 weeks you should seek medical advise, and possibly physical therapy.

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Exercise helps manage the pain associated with arthritis

Exercise helps manage the pain associated with arthritis

arthritisSome people think that people with arthritis shouldn’t exercise, or even that forceful exercise such as running can cause arthritis.  This is a myth.  Exercise is one way to help manage the pain associated with arthritis.  It just requires performing a routine that is beneficial rather than irritating to your joints.

The goal is to do a program that allows for strength and endurance in a way that is less than body weight. This is best done sitting or laying, and aquatic exercises are always beneficial for this population.

ergonomics

Ergonomics is the study of people’s efficiency in their work environment.  Sitting at a computer is the most common problem in a work or home setting.  Ideally, the top of the computer screen should be at eye level and down. It needs to be close enough that you don’t lean forward to see it well.

The arms should be down at your side and supported there by arm rests.  Your feet should be able to rest flat on the floor.  The chair should have proper lumbar cushion and support so that you maintain an upright posture.

 

back

The most common area of pain is in the low back, or lumbar spine.  The general diagnosis of degenerative spine problems are a common reason for back pain.

This is often seen in the older adult population, and sometimes includes leg pain. This set of conditions required a flexion based exercise program, which helps to open up the spine and decrease the amount of pressure in the area.

Extension exercises should be avoided and walking for exercise should be limited, as it is a common aggravating factor.  See a Physical Therapist for a specific plan that can help reduce these symptoms and return you to functional activities.

 

r7_fasciitis-1Plantar fasciitis is inflammation of connective tissue in the arch of the foot, and causes pain with standing. Pain is often worst in the heel first thing in the morning, as the tissue is tightest then.

It is imperative for people with this diagnosis to wear proper shoes that provide good arch support.  The plantar fascia needs to be stretched and the foot and ankle strengthened so that it has proper mechanics.

 

greater troch

 

Pain on the side of the hip is often caused by greater trochanteric bursitis.  This is an inflammatory condition of the bursa(a fluid filled sack) that is on the outside of the hip.  It causes pain with side sleeping and repetitive motions like walking or stair climbing.

The muscles in this area are commonly weak, and need to be strengthened to  stabilize the pelvis.

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Physical Therapy & Parkinson’s

Physical Therapy & Parkinson’s

The physical changes that people with Parkinson’s Disease are demonstrate are tremors, slow and small movements, poor flexibility, and balance and gait problems.  The studies have shown that physical therapy helps prevent further progression of the disease in the early stages, reduce the amount of medication needed, and improve physical symptoms in later stages.  Performing exercises such as walking on a treadmill or biking at speeds faster than desired, produces improvements in many symptoms, including hand tremors.  Large movements, outside of the patient’s comfort zone are also important in treating these movement disorders.  It is essential for people with Parkinson’s Disease to receive physical therapy immediately upon diagnosis, not just once they’ve fallen or had physical problems, and to continue exercise programs for the rest of their lives.

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Shoulder pain problems? We can help!

Shoulder pain problems? We can help!

ShoulderThe rotator cuff is a term that many people have heard of, but don’t know all that it entails.  The rotator cuff is made up of four muscles in shoulder that attach the upper arm bone(humerus) to the shoulder blade.  They are responsible for maintaining the stability of the shoulder.  A rotator cuff injury is common, and can be from repetitive over use, or trauma.  Non-traumatic injuries increase in likelihood with age.  Up to 80% of people over 60 years old demonstrate rotator cuff tears.

The tears occur at the tendonous portion of a muscle, where it changes in structure and attaches the muscle to the bone.  There are two categories of tears:  partial and full, and are differentiated by the length or severity of the tear.
Some symptoms of a rotator cuff injury are pain to the top or outside of the shoulder, weakness, and loss of motion.  Specifically, it can be difficult to reach up high or behind your back.
A physical therapist can help diagnose or differentiate this problem from others.  Rotator cuff injuries can be treated or managed with physical therapy.  Physical therapy treatment of a partial tear can often result in restoration of motion and strength.   It is not mandatory to have surgery on a torn tendon, especially if it is a partial tear that is chronic in nature.  If you do have surgery, physical therapy is imperative afterward to gain proper motion, strength, and function after surgery. Call us today for a consultation at Kaizen Total Wellness, (941) 315-6182.
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