Muscle Cramps: Have you ever experienced a “charley horse”?

Muscle Cramps: Have you ever experienced a “charley horse”? If yes, you probably still remember the sudden, tight and intense pain caused by a muscle locked in spasm.
 
A cramp is an involuntary and forcibly contracted muscle that does not relax. Cramps can affect any muscle under your voluntary control (skeletal muscle). Muscles that span two joints are most prone to cramping. Cramps can involve part or all of a muscle, or several muscles in a group.
 
The most commonly affected muscle groups are:
 
* Back of lower leg/calf (gastrocnemius)
* Back of thigh (hamstrings)
* Front of thigh (quadriceps)
* Cramps in the feet, hands, arms, abdomen, and along the rib cage are also very common.
 
Who Gets Cramps? Just about everyone will experience a muscle cramp sometime in life. It can happen while you play tennis or golf, bowl, swim, or do any exercise. It can also happen while you sit, walk, or even just sleep. Sometimes the slightest movement that shortens a muscle can trigger a cramp.
 
Some people are predisposed to muscle cramps and get them regularly with any physical exertion.
 
Those at greatest risk for cramps and other ailments related to excess heat include infants and young children, people over age 65, and those who are ill, overweight, overexert during work or exercise, or take drugs or certain medications.
 
Muscle cramps are very common among endurance athletes (i.e., marathon runners and triathletes) and older people who perform strenuous physical activities.
 
Causes: Although the exact cause of muscle cramps is unknown (idiopathic), some researchers believe inadequate stretching and muscle fatigue leads to abnormalities in mechanisms that control muscle contraction. Other factors may also be involved, including poor conditioning, exercising or working in intense heat, dehydration and depletion of salt and minerals (electrolytes).
 
* Stretching and Muscle Fatigue
* Heat, Dehydration and Electrolyte Depletion
 
See your doctor if cramps are severe, happen frequently, respond poorly to simple treatments, or are not related to obvious causes like strenuous exercise. You could have problems with circulation, nerves, metabolism, hormones, medications, or nutrition.
 
Muscle cramps may be a part of many conditions that range from minor to severe, such as Lou Gehrig’s disease (amyotrophic lateral sclerosis), spinal nerve irritation or compression (radiculopathy), hardening of the arteries, narrowing of the spinal canal (stenosis), thyroid disease, chronic infections, and cirrhosis of the liver.
 
Prevention: To avoid future cramps, work toward better overall fitness. Do regular flexibility exercises before and after you work out to stretch muscle groups most prone to cramping.
 
If you are experiencing frequent muscle cramps the Physicians at TOCA are hear to help. To learn more visit our website at: www.tocamd.com or call 602-277-6211.
 
#Recovery. #Results. #Relief. #musclecramp #stretching #orthopedics #injuryprevention

 

 

Backpack Safety!

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]When you move your child’s backpack after he or she drops it at the door, does it feel like it contains 40 pounds of rocks? Maybe you’ve noticed your child struggling to put it on, bending forward while carrying it, or complaining of tingling or numbness. If you’ve been concerned about the effects that extra weight might have on your child’s still-growing body, your instincts are correct. Backpacks that are too heavy can cause a lot of problems for kids, like back and shoulder pain, and poor posture. Did you know that according to the Consumer Product Safety Commission, injuries from heavy backpacks result in more than 7,000 emergency room visits per year. Sprains, strains, and “overuse” injuries were among the top complaints.

When selecting a backpack, look for:

  • An ergonomic design
  • The correct size: never wider or longer than your child’s torso and never hanging more than 4 inches below the waist
  • Padded back and shoulder straps
  • Hip and chest belts to help transfer some of the weight to the hips and torso
  • Multiple compartments to better distribute the weight
  • Compression straps on the sides or bottom to stabilize the contents
  • Reflective material

Backpack Safety Tips:

  • Your backpack should weigh only 15% – 20% of your total weight
  • Use both shoulder straps to keep the weight of the backpack better distributed
  • Tighten the straps to keep the load closer to the back
  • Organize items and pack heavier things low and towards the center
  • Remove items if the backpack is too heavy and only carry items necessary for the day
  • Lift properly by bending at the knees when picking up a backpack

Remember: A roomy backpack may seem like a good idea, but the more space there is to fill, the more likely your child will fill it. Make sure your child uses both straps when carrying the backpack. Using one strap shifts the weight to one side and causes muscle pain and posture problems.

Help your child determine what is absolutely necessary to carry. If it’s not essential, leave it at home.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row]

Hafsatu Kamara Olympic Dream Story

Hafsatu Kamara Olympic Dream Story (TOCA Arrowhead Physical Therapy Technician with a B.S. in Exercise Science):

“I was born in Virginia, USA but I started track as a child in Africa when I was in Sierra Leone being raised by my grandparents. Once I was back in the United States, I was doing other sports like basketball, soccer, dance, and softball. It wasn’t until my senior year in high school that I was able to really get back to track and be impactful. I am motivated by the up and coming athletes in my country who are looking to represent Sierra Leone at a higher level. I am motivated by my family and friends, who have supported me in all my endeavors and continue to encourage and uplift me.

My ultimate goal is to inspire young Sierra Leone girls that they can surpass any challenge and they can be impactful as women, especially in sports. A personal goal of mine is to be the first Sierra Leonean to medal in a major competition and to rewrite my country’s athletic history with my name. My community goal is to start a foundation that will implement sports and fitness at a young age to the Sierra Leonean community.”

Hafsa is the current record holder as the fastest Sierra Leonean female 100/ 200m sprinter, clocking in at 11.78, breaking the previous 11.87 record.

In the short time since competing, she has already represented Sierra Leone in several International sporting events, including the Commonwealth Games in 2014 and most recently the African Championship sports.

Congratulations Hafsa!

‪#‎OlympicGames‬ ‪#‎OlympicDream‬ ‪#‎Recovery‬‪#‎Results‬ ‪#‎Relief‬

The Orthopedic Clinic Association TOCA's photo.

 

Finger, Hand, and Wrist Problems, Non-injury:

Everyone has had a minor problem with a finger, hand, or wrist. Most of the time our body movements do not cause problems, but it’s not surprising that symptoms occur from everyday wear and tear or from overuse. Finger, hand, or wrist problems can also be caused by injuries or the natural process of aging.

Your fingers, hands, or wrists may burn, sting, or hurt, or feel tired, sore, stiff, numb, hot, or cold. Maybe you can’t move them as well as usual, or they are swollen. Perhaps your hands have turned a different color, such as red, pale, or blue. A lump or bump might have appeared on your wrist, palm, or fingers. Home treatment is often all that is needed to relieve your symptoms.

Finger, hand, or wrist problems may be caused by an injury. If you think an injury caused your problem, see the topic Finger, Hand, and Wrist Injuries. But there are many other causes of finger, hand, or wrist problems.

* Carpal tunnel syndrome is caused by pressure on a nerve in the wrist. The symptoms include tingling, numbness, weakness, or pain of the fingers and hand.
Tendon pain is actually a symptom of tendinosis, a series of very small tears (microtears) in the tissue in or around the tendon. In addition to pain and tenderness, common symptoms of tendon injury include decreased strength and movement in the affected area.

* De Quervain’s disease can occur in the hand and wrist when tendons and the tendon covering (sheath) on the thumb side of the wrist swell and become inflamed.

* Repetitive motion syndrome is a term used to describe symptoms such as pain, swelling, or tenderness that occur from repeating the same motion over and over.

* Writer’s cramps develop with repeated hand or finger motion, such as writing or typing.

* Trigger finger or trigger thumb occurs when the flexor tendon and its sheath in a finger or thumb thicken or swell.

Dupuytren’s disease is an abnormal thickening of tissue beneath the skin in the palm of the hand or hands and occasionally the soles of the feet. The thickened skin and tendons (palmar fascia) may eventually limit movement or cause the fingers to bend so that they can’t be straightened.

* Ganglion cysts are small sacs (cysts) filled with clear, jellylike fluid that often appear as bumps on the hands and wrists but can also develop on feet, ankles, knees, or shoulders.

If you are experiencing finger, hand, and wrist problems contact the experienced staff at TOCA! For more information call 602-277-6211 or visit our website at www.tocamd.com!

‪#‎Recovery‬ ‪#‎Results‬ ‪#‎Relief‬

Congratulations to TOCA employee Hafsatu Kamara: Heading to the Olympics!

Congratulations to TOCA employee Hafsatu Kamara. Hafsatu is a Physical Therapy Technician at our TOCA Arrowhead location! Hafsatu will be competing in the 2016 Olympics!

We will be cheering for you Hafsatu!

“In total delight, the Rio bound Hafsatu Kamara trains in preparation.

Sierra Leone’s United States (U.S) based female sprinter, Hafsatu Kamara has been confirmed to represent the country at the Summer Olympic Games in Rio, Brazil slated for August 5th – 21st 2016.

Kamara who lives and trains in Phoenix, Arizona will be going to the games alongside home-based youngster, Ishamail D M Kamara. Both sprinters will represent the country on the track in this year’s games and are expected to compete in the 100 meters respectively.

The 24-year-old Hafsatu who can also compete in 200 meters is also specialized in 100 meters and she is currently Sierra Leone’s national 100 meters’ record holder with a time of 11.61 seconds- a time which she set back in May this year at a meet in Phoenix Arizona”

http://www.vfdrn.com/…/-us-based-sprinter-to-represent-sier…

The Orthopedic Clinic Association TOCA's photo.

 

It’s Sandal Season: Tips for Buying Pain-Free Sandals!

It’s Sandal Season: Tips for Buying Pain-Free Sandals!

Shoes that are flimsy can be a pain in the back (and the hips, knees and feet). When you’re buying sandals, keep your cool with styles that do your body good.

Here’s what to look for this season when buying pain-free sandals:

* Quality: It may be tempting to purchase a sandal that is cheaply priced and cheaply made. Some stores will sell flip-flops for a dollar a pair, but what you save in money will cost you in pain and discomfort. Poor quality and flimsy flip-flops have a high probability of causing blisters and other types of irritation. Before buying any footwear, make sure to check the material quality and durability.

* Arch support effectiveness: Many cheaply made flip-flops are constructed with pieces of unsupported foam. If you plan on wearing them for longer periods than a quick trip to the store, you’ll need stronger soles with adequate support for the arch.

* Sturdiness: Before making your purchase, be sure the flip-flops have the correct bend. A good way to do so is to gently bend the sole from one end to other. If the sole bends in half, rather than at the ball of the foot, it isn’t sturdy enough to withstand long-term wear.

*Comfort: As with any shoe, you need to be sure that the flip-flop fits correctly. Your foot should not hang off the front or back of the sole. Also be sure that the flip-flops are the correct width for your foot. When you walk, they should conform to your feet without shifting or slipping.

* Activity usefulness: Before you even start to look for flip-flops, decide what type of activity they’ll most likely be used for. Will they be used to trek mountains or to keep your feet from getting burned when walking from your beach towel to the water? Will you be walking in them for hours at a time, or just quick jaunts? The more you plan on using them, the more support you’ll need to look for when purchasing.

* Pay attention to the rest of your body: Sandals may cause more than just foot pain. If somebody’s foot pronates, in which the arch collapses, it could put strain on other parts of the body. If you wear flip-flops without support, it could cause strain and pain in the knees, hip, and lower back.

Your foot health should always be a priority. If you suffer from a foot or ankle condition, set up an appointment with one of our TOCA foot and ankle doctors learn more by call 602-277-6211 or visit our website at www.tocamd.com!

‪#‎Recovery‬ ‪#‎Results‬ ‪#‎Relief‬

 

What Texting Can Do to Your Spine: This image will make you sit up straight, immediately!

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What Texting Can Do to Your Spine – Pop quiz: Are you currently reading this while hunched over your phone? Looking down at your phone can force up to 60 pounds of weight on your spine, according to a new study in the journal Surgical Technology International.

Most people spend an average of two to four hours a day slumped over their smartphones, according to the study, and that awkward position isn’t doing any favors for your neck and back.

The adult head weighs about 10 to 12 pounds, so when you’re standing upright with perfect posture, that’s the amount of stress that’s on your spine. According to the new research, tilting your head forward increases the amount of stress—and therefore weight—on your spine. When you tilt just 15 degrees forward, that’s about 27 pounds; at 30 degrees, it’s 40 pounds; at 45 degrees, it’s 49 pounds; and at 60 degrees, it’s 60 pounds of stress.

Not only can that cause a literal pain in your neck, but it also puts stress on your muscles, tendons, and ligaments.

We know you won’t be throwing out your phone, tablet, or e-reader anytime soon, just be sure to use it with proper posture – which means your ears are aligned with your shoulders and your shoulder blades are back in the neutral position!

‪#‎Recovery‬ ‪#‎Results‬ ‪#‎Relief‬

At TOCA our highly educated and skilled physical therapists treat a variety of injuries including injuries of the spine, shoulder, elbow, hand, hip, knee, foot and ankle. Our therapists will help you recover from injury, rehabilitate after surgery, help to prevent future injuries, and help you reach your fitness goals. For those looking to continue beyond therapy, wellness and sport specific training is available.

To learn more visit our website at www.tocamd.com or call 602-277-6211!

‪#‎Recovery‬ ‪#‎Results‬ ‪#‎Relief‬

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Friday Facts about Physical Therapy

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Physical therapy is used with patients who have difficulty in moving around and perform everyday activities due to some injury or surgery. The major goal of this type of therapy is to reduce physical pain caused by any surgery and chronic health problems making daily activities easier. Physical therapies are professional in helping reduce such pain and make patients move around better, while improving their physical health and fitness level. Below we explore more facts about physical therapy including its functions and types.

What Are the Functions of Physical Therapy?

1. Injury Recoveries: Physical therapy helps in recovering from a physical injury like back pain and plantar fasciitis by reducing pain in muscles, ligaments and tendons. If done correctly, under physician’s supervision, physical therapy can improve function and flexibility of soft tissues and help in developing muscle strength. Physical therapist might advise on how to perform certain physical activities in what specific manner, to reduce chances of any further injury.

2. Chronic Health Conditions: Patients with chronic or permanent physical condition can benefit from physical therapy. Physical therapy can help with conditions like vertigo, rheumatoid arthritis, spinal stenosis, Parkinson’s disease, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), temporomandibular condition and multiple sclerosis. Physical therapist will examine the patients thoroughly and develop a physical activity program to help with their specific condition, by strengthening muscles, increasing the range of motion or endurance.

3. Significant Disability Rehabilitation: Some physical conditions like spinal cord injury, cardiopulmonary conditions, stroke, and brain injury entail numerous body systems and can cause a serious disability if not treated right away. Physical therapists’ job is to take care of the patient’s range of motion, physical mobility like walking around, climbing stairs, muscular strength, and endurance. They can recommend the proper equipment such as walker, wheel chair etc. according to the need of patients and help with the right use of it.

4. Childhood Health Conditions: Physical therapy is not limited to adults and it can help children with chronic health conditions and injuries by developing physical strength and endurance, hence improving mobility. The most frequently seen childhood injuries include cerebral palsy, muscular dystrophy, arthritis, and brain injury. Therapist inspects child’s condition thoroughly and then devises a physical plan according to his special developmental and physical needs. Some schools have physical therapy facilities for children with special needs, for example, children with scoliosis.

What Are the Types of Physical Therapy?
1. Exercise: Exercise is something extracurricular beside daily routine that improves strength and endurance. Physical therapy consists of an exercise that is expressly designed for particular injury or health condition. The exercise includes stretching of the muscles of back, abdomen and trunk, lifting weights, water aerobics, jogging, walking and several other physical activities.

2. Cold or Heat Therapy: Cold or heat therapy is used to get an instant relief from inflammation and other muscle injuries. In cold therapy physician uses ice packs on injured parts of the body to relieve pain. Ice treatments include Ice massage, compression, elevation, cold packs, and lotions. Heat therapy relaxes muscles and heals the injuries by increasing blood circulation, which is widely useful in osteoarthritis with paraffin wax.

3. Manual Therapy: Manual therapy includes treatment of the condition with the use of hands and not any other equipment. The goal of this kind of therapy is to reduce pain and induce relaxation.

* In a massage treatment, physical therapist relaxes muscles by applying pressure to the soft tissues that improves blood circulation.
* Mobilization treatment is used to pull, push or twist joints and bones into their particular position, using slow, calculated movements. This process helps with tight tissues, joints alignment and flexibility.
* Manipulation which is more aggressive than the others is used to place the bones and joints back in their position through vigorous movements.

4. Education: Physical therapy education and training includes performing daily activities without intricacy, how to use several equipment such as wheelchairs and crutches, avoiding injury and making home safe if the patient suffers from any serious strength or vision problem.

5. Ultrasound: Ultrasound therapy is used to help with muscle spasms; it relaxes muscles before exercise, using high-pitched sound waves. Ultrasound is not usually used for children Therapist should use greater caution while using Ultrasound to avoid deep heating.

6. Electrical Stimulation: Electrical stimulation therapy is a treatment where electric current is used to create an effect in the body that treats a specific problem. This therapy is used for several purposes some of which are healing wounds and broken bones, after surgery healing like knee surgery, after a stroke and in other events to reduce pain.

At TOCA our highly educated and skilled physical therapists treat a variety of injuries including injuries of the spine, shoulder, elbow, hand, hip, knee, foot and ankle. Our therapists will help you recover from injury, rehabilitate after surgery, help to prevent future injuries, and help you reach your fitness goals. For those looking to continue beyond therapy, wellness and sport specific training is available.

To learn more visit our website at www.tocamd.com or call 602-277-6211!

‪#‎Recovery‬ ‪#‎Results‬ ‪#‎Relief‬

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Summer Injury Prevention TOCA Tips: Concussions

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Summer is a time to be outside and get active. Each year, millions of people in the United States participate in summer sports — from swimming, biking, and waterskiing to kayaking, rock climbing, and volleyball. These sports are thrilling and fun for all ages, but come with risks that sometimes lead to serious injuries. Doctors may describe concussions as “mild” because they are usually not life threatening, but the effects can be serious and you should know when to seek medical attention.

These injury prevention tips will prepare you and your loved ones to play safely.

1. Always wear a properly fitted helmet and replace it after a serious fall.

When wearing a baseball cap to keep your face shaded from the sun, make sure your helmet still fits securely on your head. And did you know that wearing a helmet while biking, skateboarding, or riding an ATV (all terrain vehicle) is one of the best ways to prevent a brain injury? It’s also very important to replace your helmet after a serious crash. Some helmets are built to withstand only a single impact, while others can withstand more than one — depending on the severity. Grass may seem soft, but trees, rocks, and other people aren’t.

2. Have fun, but know your limitations.

If it’s your first time doing a sport like rock climbing, waterskiing, or white-water kayaking, take lessons from an expert and use the recommended safety equipment. Learn the fundamentals from a pro, start slowly, and be patient. Know your limitations and make sure children do as well.

Young children should never play in or near water or bike on rough terrain without close supervision. And remember, everyone — kids and adults — need a life jacket when on the water.

3. Be familiar with your surroundings and stay alert.

Be sure to scope out the terrain before you start climbing, hiking, or mountain biking.

When boating on a river, lake, or ocean, make sure you know where you will put in and where you will be taking out. And if white-water canoeing or kayaking, make sure you know and are prepared for the level of rapids and other water conditions.
When swimming, never dive into the shallow end of a pool. This applies to natural bodies of water, too, like lakes, rivers, and quarries. When you don’t know the depth of a body of water, go by the “Feet first, first time” rule to prevent brain, spinal cord, or other injuries. Learn more.

Check the weather before heading out. And if you’re swimming, get out of the pool or lake the minute you hear thunder or see lightening and seek shelter.

Try to avoid crowded areas — on land or water — as you could also be injured when someone else does something irresponsible.
Stay alert and never wear headphones; you need to hear what’s going on around you.

If you or someone you are with does take a hard spill, be sure you recognize the warning signs of a traumatic brain injury. If the individual loses consciousness or feels confused or disoriented, call 911 or seek emergency medical help as soon as possible.

Finally, if you have a concussion, give yourself a chance to heal. Experiencing a second injury before the first one heals could have long-term consequences.

Signs of Concussion: Adults
(Source: The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention)

The signs and symptoms of a traumatic brain injury can be subtle. Symptoms of a TBI may not appear until days or weeks following the injury or may even be missed as people may look fine even though they may act or feel differently. The following are some common signs and symptoms of a TBI:

• Headaches or neck pain that do not go away;
• Difficulty remembering, concentrating, or making decisions;
• Slowness in thinking, speaking, acting, or reading;
• Getting lost or easily confused;
• Feeling tired all of the time, having no energy or motivation;
• Mood changes (feeling sad or angry for no reason);
• Changes in sleep patterns (sleeping a lot more or having a hard time sleeping);
• Light-headedness, dizziness, or loss of balance;
• Urge to vomit (nausea);
• Increased sensitivity to lights, sounds, or distractions;
• Blurred vision or eyes that tire easily;
• Loss of sense of smell or taste; and
•Ringing in the ears.

Signs of Concussion: Children
(Source: The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.)

Children with a brain injury can have the same symptoms as adults, but it is often harder for them to let others know how they feel. Call your child’s doctor if they have had a blow to the head and you notice any of these symptoms:

• Tiredness or listlessness;
• Irritability or crankiness (will not stop crying or cannot be consoled);
• Changes in eating (will not eat or nurse);
• Changes in sleep patterns;
• Changes in the way the child plays;
• Changes in performance at school;
• Lack of interest in favorite toys or activities;
• Loss of new skills, such as toilet training;
• Loss of balance or unsteady walking;
• Vomiting.

‪#‎Recovery‬ ‪#‎Results‬ ‪#‎Relief‬

To learn more visit: www.tocamd.com or call 602-277-6211!
 

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Common Causes of Severe Knee Pain

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Many people think knee pain only affects older people, but it can affect people of all ages. Whether it’s due to arthritis or an injury, it is important to know what has caused the knee pain.
 
Severe knee pain can lead to inflammation and mobility problems. Anyone suffering from knee pain should uncover the exact cause so that it can be treated properly. To understand the common causes of severe knee pain, it helps to know a little about how the knee works.
 
The knee is the joint between the bones of the upper leg and the bones of the lower leg. It allows the leg to bend and provides stability to support the weight of the body. The knee supports motions such as walking, running, crouching, jumping, and turning.
 
Several parts help the knee to do its job, including:
* Bones
* Cartilage
* Muscles
* Ligaments
* Tendons
 
Any of these parts are susceptible to disease and injury which can lead to severe knee pain.
 
What are the most common causes of severe knee pain?
The common causes of severe knee pain can be broken down into five categories: trauma, infection, metabolic, degenerative, and connective tissue disorders.
 
The Arthritis Foundation list the knee as one of the joints most prone to injury. The knee’s overall structure and components put the knee at risk for certain types of injuries which can cause pain and stop it from working properly.
 
Common knee injuries are due to tears in one of the three main ligaments of the knee, tissues that hold the knee together. These are the anterior cruciate ligament (ACL), medial collateral ligament (MCL), and posterior cruciate ligament (PCL). These types of injury are common in athletes.
 
A sudden twisting motion or change in direction can lead to an injury of the ACL, the most common cruciate ligament to be injured. The PCL is generally injured due to direct impacts, such as a car crash or from being tackled while playing football. A direct blow to the knee can lead to MCL damage. These types of injuries often require surgery.
 
Tendon injuries can occur if the tendon is overworked or overstretched. Inflammation, tendinitis, or ruptures can cause knee pain. Engaging in activities that require use of the tendons, such as running, jumping, and lifting heavy items, can cause tendon injuries.
 
Patellar tendinitis is the term used to describe irritation and inflammation of the patellar tendon in the knee. A ruptured tendon can require surgical repair. Less severe cases can be treated with a rigid support called a splint to keep the knee in a fixed position.
 
Knee bursitis: Knee bursitis is caused by an injury that produces inflammation in the bursae. These are small fluid-filled sacs that cushion the outside of the knee joint and make it possible for tendons and ligaments to glide easily over the joints.
 
The bursae can become injured by a sudden blow to the front of the knee, or if people spend a lot of time on their knees without protection. If the bursae are injured, an individual may experience swelling, warmth, pain, and stiffness in the knee area.
 
Therapy and oral medications such as nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) are often used to treat the problem. Therapy can include rest, ice, elevation, and splinting.
 
Serious cases may require steroid injections. Patients normally make a full recovery with proper management and treatment.
 
Fractures: Trauma from a fall or collision can cause fractures in the bones of the knee. The knee contains several bones which can be broken, including the patella, also known as the kneecap.
 
Individuals with osteoporosis or other degenerative bone disorders that cause bones to weaken can fracture their knee simply by stepping off a curb in the wrong way. Serious fractures require surgery, but physical therapy is often all that is needed.
 
Dislocated kneecap: Some injuries can cause the kneecap to move out of place. Often, a doctor can simply pop the kneecap back into place without any problems. An X-ray is usually required to look for a fracture. The individual may have to use a splint to allow the soft tissue around the patella to heal properly and regain its strength.
 
A dislocated knee is a rare but dangerous injury. It takes a very powerful blow to cause this type of damage. Though this can be reversed, the actual dislocation of the knee is very painful. If the knee has not been put back in place, the doctor must reduce the dislocation and ensure that there are no further injuries.
 
Injuries to the nerves and blood vessels about the knee are very common with this injury, making this a medical emergency.
 
Degenerative tissue disorders: Osteoarthritis often occurs due to aging. Severe cases can be treated with a knee replacement.
 
Degenerative tissue disorders such as osteoarthritis are a common type of knee complaint. Osteoarthritis causes damage to the cartilage and surrounding tissues of the knee. It can produce pain, stiffness, and prevent the joint from working properly.
 
Osteoarthritis is most commonly due to aging and affects almost all people by the age of 80.
 
Though there is no cure for this degenerative disease, it can be treated with exercise and medications that reduce pain and improve function.
 
Severe damage may require joint replacement or other forms of surgery. Initially, a doctor will order an X-ray to see the extent of the damage and decide on the best course of treatment.
 
Connective tissue disorders: Rheumatoid arthritis (RA) is an inflammatory autoimmune disorder that affects the joints of the body. It causes the immune system to attack its own body tissues in error.
 
Unlike degenerative tissue disorders, RA and other connective tissue disorders affect the lining of the joints. The result is a painful swelling in the knee joints. If untreated, RA can lead to bone erosion and even joint deformity.
 
Even though the pain may only be in the knee area, RA can also damage other parts of the body. It is important for an individual to talk to a doctor regarding treatment options.
 
Currently, there is no cure for RA, but medication and treatment options are available. Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, steroids, and biological agents are just a few of the available treatments.
 
Metabolic problems: Metabolic causes are those that occur alongside a disease that affects the several parts of the body, such as gout. Gout is one of the most common metabolic causes of knee pain.
 
Gout is caused by a buildup of uric acid crystals in the joints. Gout is a form of arthritis and can be very painful. It causes the knee to become swollen and inflamed, and can even affect the knee’s range of motion.
 
A doctor will often recommend anti-inflammatory medications or other treatments that assist in the breakdown of the chemicals that lead to crystal formation.
 
Pseudogout is a similar condition and is commonly mistaken for gout. It causes calcium-containing crystals to develop in the fluid of the joint, causing the knee to swell. Treatment for gout and pseudogout are often similar.
 
Infection:The knee area can become infected by bacteria. This can lead to severe knee pain.
 
Cellulitis is a very serious bacterial skin infection that can affect the knee area. Even a simple scrape on the knee can become infected if it is left untreated. Symptoms often include redness in the affected area and skin that feels hot and extremely tender to the touch.
 
The infection can spread to other areas of the body, including the lymph nodes and bloodstream. Such an infection can be life-threatening if it is not treated. It is important to pay close attention to any scrapes or bruises, especially if they don’t seem to be healing properly.
 
In most cases, cellulitis can be cleared up with antibiotics. Signs and symptoms normally disappear within a few days following treatment.
 
It is also possible for the joints in the knee to become infected. This condition is called septic arthritis and causes swelling, pain, and redness. Some individuals also complain of a fever. If caught early, it can be treated easily, but any infection not properly medicated can lead to permanent damage to the cartilage of the knee.
 
These are just a few of the common causes of knee pain. Any knee pain should be evaluated by a trained medical professional who can perform tests to determine the direct cause of pain.
 
A medical professional could ask the following questions about a patient’s knee pain:
 
* When did the pain start?
* How did the pain start?
* Is the pain linked to an injury?
* How severe is the pain?
* How has the pain changed over time?
* What makes the pain worse and what makes it better?
* What treatment has been used so far?
* Has this ever happened before?
 
If you are experiencing knee pain, the expert physicians at TOCA are here to help! To learn more visit: www.tocamd.com or call 602-277-6211!
 
#Recovery #Results #Relief

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