6 Things To Know About Trigger Point Injections

Skeletal muscles can sometimes develop tight or knotted spots that cause pain in the absence of any other type of damage. Strain or overuse of muscles can cause these, as well as emotional stress. In other cases, they might arise as a symptom of a different pain condition, such as fibromyalgia or whiplash. A better understanding of the injections commonly used to treat these will help you make decisions for your own pain management.

Injections are often combined with other treatments:Particularly when these points appear in patients with conditions such as headache disorders, injections may be used as one element of a treatment plan. For example, manual therapy to stretch the muscles, or other types of physical therapy, may be used as well.

They can be given dry, with no medication: The injections may contain saline, local anesthetics, or corticosteroids. More recently, botox has been used as a treatment option. Pain Management DenverAnesthetics are generally used in low doses, and steroids given infrequently in the same place, in both cases out of safety concerns. Studies on dry injections with no medication have been reported to show a comparable success rate, although further research may be needed.

Medical imaging can be part of the diagnostic process:Recent studies have suggested that MRE, or magnetic resonance elastography, imaging can locate tension in muscle tissue. Other tests, including CT and MRI scans, may be administered as part of ruling out other potential causes for pain along with getting a more complete picture of what may be causing your problem.

Injections should be followed up with stretching and pressure: As mentioned, trigger point injections are sometimes used in conjunction with types of manual or physical therapy. Although you should avoid strenuous activity for the first few days after your injection, regular stretching of the muscle in the treatment area can help to resolve the pain. A doctor will be able to give you advice on how best to do this.

Treating one trigger point may treat another connected one, but not always: A key trigger point is one connected to a nerve pathway that activates another satellite. In this case, treating the key will likely also treat the satellite. A primary trigger point, on the other hand, is connected to a secondary one biomechanically rather than neurologically. Treating the primary site will not treat the secondary.

Trigger point injections carry some minor risks:As with other types of injections, there is some chance of infection or other tissue damage. Injections in certain spots in the upper back may cause some risk of collapsed lungs, and there are common points in the lower back near the kidneys that carry the risk of organ damage if poorly done.

Your pain management provider can give you further advice if you think trigger points in your muscle tissue may be causing you pain. Although commonly used for mysofacial, head, and neck pain, this type of treatment can be useful for conditions in other areas of the body.

Pain Management Through Spinal Decompression Therapy

With around 31 million Americans suffering from back pain at any given point in time, it’s not surprising pain management for this type of discomfort is necessary. There are so many health issues that can cause back problems that no one solution is ideal. However, for many, spinal decompression therapy is a good option.

What is Spinal Decompression Therapy?

Spinal decompression therapy is a non-invasive method of relieving back pain through the use of traction. The procedure is not painful, though patients will feel stretching in their back.

To decompress the spine, the patient lies on a special therapy table. The position (face up or face down) will depend on the practitioner and the type of back injury. The lower half of Pain Management Doctors In Coloradothe table tilts back and forth. The patient is buckled into a harness to ensure security and the table is adjusted to provide traction on the back.

Through gentle stretching and relaxing, the spine is realigned. The idea here is to allow herniated or bulging disks to slip back into place, which relieves the discomfort felt. The position and traction may also promote increased circulation, oxygenation and nutrition to the damaged areas, to speed up healing.

Each treatment lasts between 30 and 45 minutes. To get the full benefit from decompression, it’s usually recommended that the treatments continue for four to six weeks, with several sessions each week. After 15-30 treatments, the patient should notice a definite improvement.

Other therapies may also be included during the sessions to make them more effective. Depending on the clinic, ultrasound, cold therapy, heat therapy or electrical stimulation can be used during the procedure. When combined, multiple treatments may be more effective.

Who Can Benefit from This Type of Pain Management

Patients with pain caused by bulging, degenerated or herniated disks may benefit from gentle traction. It has also been recommended for sciatica and lower back or neck pain of various types. While mild forms of back pain can be treated safely, it’s a good idea to have a consult before deciding on a course of treatment.

Anyone who is relatively healthy, apart from the back pain, could be a good candidate for this technique. While some websites offer instructions for doing this treatment at home, it is not recommended. A professional is able to adjust the amount of traction to best suit the patient’s needs and to avoid injury. It can be difficult to manage this at home.

Potential Risks

Spinal decompression is relatively low risk. Any patients with spinal surgery should consult a doctor before considering this procedure, however. If there is any pain during the stretching, the session should be stopped so the cause of the pain can be determined. Decompression is also not recommended for pregnant women.

In each of these cases, decompression could cause more harm than good and other forms of pain management should be considered. For those with simpler back issues, stretching and decompression may be all that is necessary to relieve chronic pain.

Worker’s Compensation and Pain Management in Denver CO

No one wants to be injured on the job, but accidents do happen. The goal of this facility is to effectively provide treatment for employees, or clients, from the time of the initial hire, Workers Compensation Denverthroughout the entire treatment plan, and through the final discharge.

Having the most comprehensive pain management in Denver places emphasis on early and accurate diagnosis and the effective treatment of musculoskeletal trauma. This allows employees who have been injured on the job to return to work as safely and as quickly as possible.

Time and Vested Interest

Understanding that the situation of a work-related injury involves more than a patient and a medical care team means providing timely progress reports as necessary. Employers and insurance company representatives have a vested interest in the patient and their ability to return to work.

Denver work comp doctorIt is important for employers to plan production around the missing worker and accommodate for changing staffing needs. The excellent healthcare staff will regularly provide updated treatment plans and progress notes to both the employer and the insurance provider as requested.

When the time comes for an injured employee to return to work, there may be temporary restrictions or modified duty tasks as they reintegrate back into their employment position and the expectations of the role. This may include range of motion, weight lifting or mobility limitations as the healing process continues and the muscles are redeveloped. Follow-up care for post-injury rehabilitation is not only recommended, it is also expected.

Educating Employees on Accidents

Employees and employers should be educated on how accidents occur and how they can prevent many injuries that tend to happen often relative to the specific industry. A qualified and experienced medical treatment staff works closely with the injured worker, as well as the employer and other industry representatives to discuss ways to avoid accidents and provide effective preventative care.Pain Clinic Denver

Understanding the value of education and preventive measures, knowledgeable healthcare professionals explain such concepts as ergonomic furniture, posture, and proper body mechanics. In addition, safety gear and even footwear may need to be changed or adjusted to provide the most efficient and healthy environment for the worker and the workplace.

Conclusions

When seeking a partner in healthcare and treatment for work-related injuries, employers want to know that their employees will fully recover and return to work within a reasonable time frame.  This can only be accomplished when attending Denver pain management doctors and their supportive healthcare staff have received proper training in both the physiology of the body mechanics, but also in relevant workman’s compensation procedures and guidelines.

5 Things to Know about Medial Branch Blocks

A medial branch block is a procedure that is used to interrupt pain signals deriving from the facet joints. Medial branch nerves transport pain signals from the facet joints and surrounding muscles to the brain. If the nerves are numbed, they cannot transmit these pain signals to the Denver pain managementbrain and pain relief is achieved.

5 Things to Know about Medial Branch Blocks

1. Medial branch blocks can be used to treat back, neck and thoracic spine pain: The medial nerves are located at all spinal levels, and these include the cervical section which is the neck area, the thoracic region which is the upper/mid back and the lumbosacral region which is the lower back area.

When the facet joints are inflamed or arthritic, they often produce pain signals. The injection works to prevent pain by interrupting the signals from reaching the brain.

2. The injection is very safe: Although the medial branch nerves control small muscles throughout the spine, blocking them does not come with grave consequences. This is because the medial branch nerves have minimum control over major muscles. Interrupting the sensation is basically harmless.

3. The injection is primarily diagnostic: A lot of people identify the medial branch block Best Denver pain centerinjection as pain relief therapy. While it does indeed work to provide pain relief, the primary purpose of this injection is to provide diagnosis.

If a patient experiences pain relief after the injection, they may be required to undergo a subsequent procedure to deal with the main underlying issue and gain long term pain relief. The purpose of the injection is to identify whether or not the facet joints are the cause of the back pain.

4. The entire procedure takes about 30 minutes: This is an uncomplicated procedure that should take no more than half an hour. Usually, the injection will take a few minutes but there are other processes involved. These include the preparation stage where the patient Pain Clinic Denvercould be sedated if they wish to. Application of numbing medicine is also done before the procedure as well as a contrast dye test which is undertaken to ensure that the medication is directed to the right area and that it is on the targeted medial branch nerve.

The injection consists of a local anesthetic: Medial branch blocks contain only a small amount of local anesthetic such as lidocaine. The medication takes immediate effect and depending on the anesthetic injected, the medication could last from an hour to six hours or even a much longer duration.

Medial Branch Blocks: What Are The Results?

A medial branch block injection may not necessarily provide immediate pain relief and this will Pain Clinic Denverdepend on whether or not the targeted nerves are the ones carrying the pain signals. However, if the patient obtains pain relief, the Denver pain management doctor will have found the appropriate nerves.

If the block provides considerable pain relief four to six hours after the injection, the patient may have to undergo another procedure that will provide a longer duration of pain relief. Radiofrequency ablation or radiofrequency neurotomy could be considered after the medial branch block.

RF ablation has been shown to offer anywhere from 6 to 18 months in over 75% of patients. It’s been a revolutionary procedure in pain management.