28. December 2015 06:24
The Burner or Stinger is a nerve injury commonly found in sportspersons engaged in collision sports such a football, ice hockey, wrestling or rugby. The nerves that cause sensation as well as movement in the arms are bundled at a point between the shoulders and neck called the Brachial Plexus. When a player falls, the top of the shoulder gets hit and the neck as well as the arm gets stretched in opposite directions, causing injury to the nerves at the Brachial Plexus. The effect of a Burner generally lasts for a few minutes but in some cases it may stay for hours and days. If the Burner or Stinger becomes a recurring problem, it may lead to a chronic neurologic syndrome.
- Physical collision or falling on the head during sports
- Spinal Stenosis (constricted spinal canal)
- Injury/trauma to the Brachial Plexus
- Overstretching or pushing of the head and neck in opposite direction
- Sharp burning or stinging sensation in the affected arm
- Numbness or weakness
- Pain in the neck
- Difficulty in neck and head movement
- Extreme pain in both arms
- Tingling feeling or sensation of pins stinging in the neck, fingers and hand
- Feeling of warmth in the affected arm
- The arm may go limp and need to be held close to the body
Usually the symptoms of a Burner do not persist for long and the athlete can resume playing soon after the injury. However, if the pain lasts for a longer duration or it becomes recurrent, a detailed diagnosis by a doctor becomes mandatory. The doctor will assess the severity of pain, numbness or muscular weakness, movement of neck and head, cause and process of injury before outlining a treatment procedure to be followed. MRI or X-ray imagings are generally not required but may be prescribed if the patient complains of blurred speech/memory loss/inability to think/ persistent weakness or pain.
The doctor may ask the athlete to discontinue sports activities till the symptoms persist.
- Wearing shoulder pads, cowboy collar, cervical collars, butterfly restrictors or other protective gear.
- Application of ice or heat pads.
- Prescription of anti-inflammatory drugs and pain killers.
- Restricted movement of the affected arm
- Strengthening of the affected muscles by training under a therapist/instructor
- Surgical intervention is required only if conservative methods fail or the injury is severe
We, at OrthoTexas, provide treatment for Burners and Stingers. To schedule an appointment with our orthopedic surgeons in Plano, TX, you can call at (972) 985 – 1072.
14. December 2015 10:38
Piriformis Syndrome refers to a neuromuscular disorder that affects the Piriformis muscle located in the buttock. This muscle begins at the lower spine and connects it to the femur (thigh bone) with the sciatic nerve running beneath it. The Piriformis muscle enables the rotation of the hip and forward leg movement. The syndrome is a result of stress or irritation caused to the muscle which, in turn, compresses the underlying sciatic nerve. It may lead to pain, spasm or numbness in the buttock radiating downwards to the thigh, lower leg and calf muscles. It is a complex medical condition that needs to be diagnosed and treated at the earliest as it may lead to a host of other pathological problems.
- Mild to severe pain in the buttock, leg or thigh
- Numbness or tingling sensation
- Discomfort while moving the hip joint
- Tenderness in the buttock muscle
- Pain tends to increase while walking up an incline, climbing stairs or sitting for a long duration
- Discomfort while sitting on the affected buttock
- Pain or discomfort during bowel movement
- Pain generally diminishes once the patient lies on his/her back
- Numbness in feet or difficulty in walking
- Women may experience Dyspareunia
- Some patients may experience pain in neck or head
- Sitting for long hours may tighten the Piriformis muscle
- Sportspersons who indulge in running, rowing or cycling tend to bend forward most of the time leading to weakening of buttock muscles
- Overuse of the hip joint or muscle that leads to stress or spasms
- Trauma to the gluteal region or the buttock
Piriformis Syndrome is a complex condition that requires various tests and methods of examination for accurate diagnosis. These may include:
- Review of the patient’s medical history to rule out other causes of pain
- Physical examination of the leg and hip by the doctor
- X-ray, MRI, CT scan and few other nerve conduction tests
- Reflex, strength and sensory testing of the deep tendon
- Assessment of disparities in length of legs
- Tenderness in the gluteal region
- The orthopedic doctor may recommend heat therapy to reduce stress and encourage flow of blood to the affected muscles
- Specific stretching exercises may also help to strengthen the Piriformis muscle, hamstrings, hip flexors and abductor muscles
- Anti-inflammatory drugs and muscle relaxants may be prescribed
- The doctor my ask to avoid activities that lead to stress or pain
- Rest for a prescribed period of two to three weeks
- Surgical intervention may be required in cases where conservative therapies fail to provide relief.
OrthoTexas provides comprehensive diagnosis and treatment for Piriformis Syndrome. To schedule an appointment with our orthopedic surgeons in Carrollton, TX, you can call at (972) 492 – 1334.
7. December 2015 08:20
Adolescent Scoliosis is a common form of Scoliosis affecting children between the age group of 9 and 15 years. In this condition, the bones of the spine rotate in such a manner that it appears like the letter ‘C’ or ‘S’ instead of a straight line. It generally affects the thoracic spine (upper or middle parts) but can also occur in the lumbar spine (lower). Adolescent Scoliosis can have physiological, aesthetic as well as long- term health problems if the degree of curve increases over the time.
The exact cause for the onset of Adolescent Scoliosis is usually not known and, therefore, it is also referred to as Adolescent Idiopathic Scoliosis. Family hereditary is believed to be a major cause of this deformity. Poor nutrition in the formative years, hormonal changes at the onset of puberty, disorders of the central nervous system, bad posture etc. are some of the factors that may lead to or aggravate the condition.
- Protruding ribs on either side
- One hip is more prominent or raised higher than the other
- Prominent tilting of one shoulder
- Uneven waistline
- Improper gait
- Visible hump at the back near the ribs while bending
- One arm appears to be longer than the other
- A physical examination such as the standard Adam’s Forward Bend Test may be conducted by the orthopedic doctor to identify apparent signs of Scoliosis.
- X-ray or MRI may be conducted to view the imaging of the posterior, anterior and lateral positions of the spine. It also helps to assess and measure the discrepancy in the limb length.
The method of treatment adopted by the spine specialist largely depends on the severity and location of the curve. The age of the child further determines the chances of progression of the deformity. The following treatment methods may be suggested for Adolescent Scoliosis:
- If the child is almost grown up and has less than 25 degree curve, he/she may be simply put under regular observation to rule out the progression of Scoliosis.
- If the curve is between 25-45 degrees, wearing a brace to prevent further deterioration may be recommended till the child is fully grown.
- Surgical intervention to realign the vertebra may be suggested when the curve is more than 45 degrees and bracing is not effective. Metal rods, screws and wires may be used to hold the bones in place until they fuse into a single bone and are completely healed.
We, at OrthoTexas, provide comprehensive treatment for Adolescent Scoliosis. To schedule an appointment with our spine surgeons in Allen, TX, you can call at (972) 727-9995.