Category Archives: Uncategorized

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Pinched nerves don’t have to be such a “pain in your neck”

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Prevention and treatment can make all the difference

By Grigory Goldberg, MD, FAAOS

Anyone who’s experienced a pinched nerve knows just how “unnerving” it can truly be. The odds are that most of you have dealt with an episode or two, and will more than likely will do so again in the future. After all, you might be surprised to know that a pinched nerve is one of the world’s more common medical maladies.

Sure, they can be short-lived in duration and minor in discomfort. But, they can also be quite lengthy, painful and debilitating, limiting your range of motion and impeding even the simplest of daily activities. It can be excruciating just lifting your head off the morning pillow, looking over your shoulder when backing out of a parking space or even pulling your shirt over your head.

 I would contend, however, that pinched nerves do not have to be such a “pain in the neck.” In fact, there are preventative steps you can take to limit your exposure, and treatment modalities you can follow upon occurrence that can make all the difference in the world.

Pay attention to the warning signs, though they’re hard to miss.

Read the full article here.


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Understanding PSIS

 

The PSIS, or Posterior Superior Iliac Spine, is one of the three major components of the hip bone. Unlike most other major bones, it is not palpable and is instead recognized by a small dimple directly above the buttock. Patients experiencing severe and chronic lower back pain are often suffering from an injury to the PSIS. This article will provide an overview of the PSIS, an explanation of what it does, and an understanding of possible pain causes and treatments. If you’re suffering from pain in this region, contact a Spine Care NJ specialist to be properly diagnosed and to discuss the benefits of minimally invasive spine surgery today.

What Is The PSIS?

Your Posterior Superior Iliac Spine is one of the three bones that make up the hip. As mentioned above, it is marked by a small dimple directly above the buttock and is responsible for providing an attachment for the posterior sacroiliac ligament, the sacrotuberous ligament, and the thoracolumbar fascia. In a nutshell, the PSIS is the crux of your hip bone and allows for major ligaments to attach to it and connect the rest of the body.

Understanding PSIS Pain

Generally felt directly above the buttocks, the PSIS is responsible for what is referred to as Sacroiliac Joint Dysfunction and can leave sufferers in tremendous amounts of pain. Typically, the pain will be felt in one or both buttocks, but can radiate up and down the legs. In most cases, the pain is described as achy and dull and is often worse in the morning and relieved with physical movement.

PSIS Pain Treatment Options

The most common treatment option for PSIS localized pain is a pain-blocking injection. In this procedure, a trained and experienced spine care specialist will use imaging to isolate the pain area before injecting a numbing agent that serves to “block” the pain signals. For most patients, this offers an effective, non-surgical solution to chronic pain in their thighs and buttocks.

Contacting A Spine Care Specialist

If you’ve been experiencing persistent pain in the buttocks or thighs and have not been able to experience relief through over the counter medications or physical movement, contact a specialist at Spine Care NJ today. Our team will review your medical history, perform a thorough physical evaluation, and diagnose the cause of your pain. Once diagnosed, your treatment options will be laid out for you, and we will work with you to find the most minimally invasive treatment solution possible. Call us today to request an appointment.


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Sports Injuries to The Back in Young Athletes

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“Oh, my back!” isn’t really a phrase we expect coming out of a teen or preteen’s mouth. But actually, young athletes are prone to several sports injuries affecting the spine. Most can be treated with rest, but it’s important to pay attention to any signs and symptoms of potential back injury. These can have serious repercussions down the line, so it’s crucial to make sure the source of back pain or stiffness is known and strong preventative measures are applied.

Below, some of the most common kinds of back injuries experienced by young athletes.

Strains and Sprains

Strains and sprains can happen anywhere in the body, including in the muscles and ligaments of the back. These are by far the most common source of back pain in young athletes, and can be caused by overuse, improper body mechanics, poor technique, trauma, and lack of appropriate conditioning or stretching. Usually in these cases, an athlete will only experience the pain when moving, and it will be relieved when they rest. Strains and sprains should be treated first with rest and anti-inflammatory pain medication. Ice packs or heat packs applied to the affected area may also be helpful. Once the athlete has recovered, the return to exercise should be slow and cautious. A sports medicine professional or physical therapist can test to see if there’s an issue with body mechanics or technique and prescribe corrective exercises accordingly.

Spondylolysis and Spondylolisthesis

Spondylolysis is a stretch fracture in the vertebrae. It’s most often found in the fifth lumbar vertebra in the lower back. Spondylolisthesis occurs when the fracture weakens the bone to the point where it begins to shift out of position. Gymnasts and other athletes who do a lot of twisting are particularly vulnerable. Athletes suffering from these conditions usually complain of pain that gets more intense when they attempt to arch their back. X-rays and other imaging studies are used to confirm the diagnosis. Rest, medication, ice, and targeted rehabilitative exercises are the normal course of action, though severe cases of spondylolisthesis may require surgery to correct. Patients with spondylolisthesis should be monitored for slippage of the affected vertebrae regularly as they continue to grow. If the vertebrae slips too far out of place, it may be necessary to reconsider or switch sports.

Nerve Pinch Injuries

Trauma, particularly in contact or collision sports, is a common cause of nerve pinch injuries. These occur when the nerves off the spinal cord in the neck are pinched or stretched. These injuries, sometimes referred to as “stingers” result in pain, weakness, and “electectrical” or other strange sensations in the neck, shoulders, and arms. Usually, these injuries resolve themselves quickly but are very likely to recur–and potentially worsen. Athletes who’ve experienced these injuries should seek medical attention to prevent the injury from getting worse. Cervical collars and corrective exercises are among some of the treatments that may be prescribed.

Juvenile Kyphosis

Juvenile kyphosis causes pain in the mid-back. Young athletes suffering this condition display a back deformity caused by the wedging of three or more vertebrae. This wedging of consecutive vertebrae results in a rounded curve of the mid-back. Exercises and stretches can help with the pain, but can’t correct the curve. Back bracing or even surgery may be necessary in serious cases. If a young athlete is experiencing mid-back pain and/or their spine seems to be taking on a dome-like shape, it’s important to see a professional for a diagnosis and help managing the condition.

Although this list includes some of the most common causes of back pain sports injuries  and conditions in young athletes, it’s by no means exhaustive. Concerned about your back health? Call us to request an appointment – 732.720.2569.


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Spine-Saving Back To School Bags

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Whether you’re heading back to school or to the office, chances are you’ve got some extra baggage on your back weighing you down. Laptops, planners, smart-phones, bottled water, cosmetics–it adds up fast and takes a real toll on your back. We’re not just talking one time aches and pains–all that stress, every day, can contribute to more significant injuries or conditions down the line. Here, our tips for minimizing your risk.

Think Small

Go with the smallest bag or purse possible to avoid the “goldfish effect” of gathering more stuff to fill extra space. If you like to have lots of “just in case” supplies, take a new approach. Instead of keeping those supplies in your back, get backups that stay in your office or locker. One big culprit to look out for? Keychains, which, when loaded up with assorted baubles, old cards, tchochkes, etc., can weigh several pounds. Make sure any old keys are off, along with anything else that can possibly go.

Backpacks: No Longer Just for Kids

Backpacks are the best bet for your back. Worn correctly, they disperse weight over a wider and more symmetrical area than messengers or other styles. For more conservative looks, try browsing the reviews here. Something like these simple, clean looking Knomo styles work for men and women in more formal business environments.

Wide Load

If you just can’t go with a backpack, then at least make sure to find something with wide straps that will distribute weight as evenly as possible.

Switch It Up/Break It Up

Another must if you go for a messenger bag or other asymmetrical style: switch shoulders regularly on your commute, and/or break things up into two small bags when possible.

Still struggling, or worried years of lugging too much around have caught up? Contact our office to request an appointment with our spine care experts.


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