165 Lilly Rd NE, Suite B, Olympia • 360.455-8014

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Knee pain-am I getting better? @ComstockPT #kneepain

I am happy to report my knee is about 80% better. I still have pain with a full squat, or fully kneeling, but have a lot less pain in sitting, with stairs and other activities that were painful.

What caused my pain? I haven’t had any injury to the right knee, in fact I have injured my left knee. I tend to use my right leg as my strong leg, and as a result I overuse my right hamstrings. This has caused the hamstrings and the IT band to become short and tight, eventually straining both my right hip muscles, right my knee and compressing the sciatic nerve.

What’s helped? Physical Therapy with Joyce Mills MPT OCS for strengthening the medial quad, stretching the hamstrings, IT band and calf muscles and deep massage with an instrument used by the therapist to help the muscles relax.

Come to @ComstockPT to get your #musclesinsync and feel better!

When I have knee pain, does it mean I need a knee replacement?

knee-rolling-in-___-internal-femoral-rotation I developed right knee pain about 2 months ago. I didn’t fall or traumatize the knee. How did this happen? From what my physical therapist tells me, I have been using my hamstring too much for strength and stability in the right leg; not using the right gluteus maximus enough. It has become short and tight as well as my iliotibial band. My lower leg muscles have become tight as well, making full bend of the knee, especially in kneeling and squatting.

It is surprising to me how much less I want to use the knee due to pain. If I try to fully squat, or get up and down from the floor, my knee hurts, so I tend to avoid it. Being a physical therapist, I know the importance of staying active so I have been making sure I fully bend my knee, even if it hurts, but with no weight on the leg (laying down or sitting with my leg out straight). I have also been working on hamstring stretches, iliotibial band stretches, and strengthening the vastus medialus portion of my quadriceps, which has become weak. My calf muscles are also tight, so I have been stretching those, both the upper calf muscle (gastrocnemius) and the lower calf muscle (soleus). My front shin muscles are tender and tight and part of my treatment has been myofascial release from the physical therapist.

X-rays were completely negative for knee arthritis, and I am so excited! The last thing I want is a new knee as the rehabilitation process for that is very very painful!

I am about 50% better; I’ll let you know how this goes in the future

When one problem is really caused by another problem…..

Sometimes one kind of pain, which seems to be caused by problem A, can really be caused by problem B.  This often happens in the PT clinic, and the smart therapist will help the patient discover the true cause of their pain. 

What are some examples? 

Abdominal pain, especially when the pain gets worse with effort such as sit ups, can really be hip painHip pain often occurs in the groin, but can actually  start out in the lower abdominal area and not as low as the groin.  When you are working out or exerting yourself, both the hip and abdominals are working hard and one can bleed over into the other.  How do you know if it is hip pain instead of abdominal muscle pain?  Does your hip become stiff when you flex it up to tie your shoe or put on your sock?  Do you hurt when you are walking or running a lot?  Then it might just be hip pain…have it checked out by your PT. 

Do you have arm pain?  Is it your elbow or is it your neck or shoulder girdles muscles which are referring pain into the arm? How do you know?  If you put pressure on a muscle and it hurts, then likely it is the muscle but if pressure on a muscle does not cause pain, it can be from further up the chain or further down the chain. 

If you pain does not get better, come on it to get assessed by your PT, and find the answer!

 

 

 

 

 

 

Coccydynia (Tailbone pain)…Pelvic Floor Treatment?

Falling on one's tailbone (coccyx) is pretty common…and. pretty. painful.  Getting tailbone pain treated effectively can often seem elusive.  If you have this, you may have tried many different options.  Have you tried Pelvic Rehabilitation physical therapy? Coccyx_-_animation03

Pelvic floor treatment addresses coccydynia, or tailbone pain, by treating the muscles, ligaments and joints that have been strained with exercise and manual therapy.  Manual therapy is used to relax muscles which have spasmed in reaction to the pain.  When the spasm at first it is to protect you…but they keep spasming and won't relax, thus causing the pain. Putting pressure on the muscles and ligaments which attach to the coccyx usually helps the pain immensely.  Here is a picture of some of the muscles which attached to the coccyx: 

coccydynia pelvic floor treatment

pelvic floor treatment

Coccydnia is treatable.  Contact Comstock Physical Therapy for Pelvic Floor Treatment. 

Here is the link of a man who sufferred from coccydnia, and his experiences and recommendations.  http://www.coccyx.org/personal/2001/jm.htm

Do you have whiplash pain? Want to get better? You can!

Do you have whiplash pain? Have you been in a car accident and been rear ended or hit from the side? You don't need to be in a car accident to have whiplash; I had whiplash as a child when I fell head first off my bike at age 6 and knocked my 2 front teeth out.

Whiplash can cause significant pain. You may have headaches, neck pain, upper back pain, shoulder pain and tingling in your arms.

whiplash image

Neck pain
whiplash


Whiplash hurts; the sooner you get treatment, the sooner you will feel better. How can physical therapy help? Our physical therapists can massage injured muscles, for example, the muscles pictured to the right.
Referral pain pattern  headaches from sternocleidomastoid

Referral pain pattern
headaches from sternocleidomastoid

We will also give customized gentle exercises to get your muscles back on the path to recovery. Other treatments designed to reduce the pain such as ultrasound, electric stimulation and cold laser can be provided. We can coordinate care with other providers such as acupuncturists, chiropractors, and massage therapists as needed.

At Comstock Physical Therapy the Muscles In-Sync approach reduces muscle spasms, increases mobility and increases strength.

Science tells us with whiplash the core muscles in your neck become out of sync or out of order. They need to be retrained to contract in the right order, then strengthening will be a lot less painful and your results will last.

Longus Colli and Capitas

Longus Colli and Capitas
“Core” muscles of the neck

Why is there a need for a "special" training program? If you have whiplash the normal sequence of the muscles contracting becomes disordered. Normally the core muscles contract to make your neck stable, then large muscles (sternocleidomastoid and scalenes) pull on the neck to rotate it or pull on your neck as you lift your arm.

After whiplash, large muscles (the big ones you can see on the sides of your neck) contract first to splint the neck. The problem is, the right order of muscle contraction does not come back and the large muscles (sternocleidomastoid

sternocleidomastoid

sternocleidomastoid

and scalenes
scalenes

scalenes

) keep contracting, which causes headaches (see the headache referral pattern for sternocleidomastoid) and arm tingling and pain (see the scalene brachial plexus picture below). We will massage these muscles to help them relax and retrain.

“Wikipedia medical illustration thoracic outlet syndrome brachial plexus anatomy with labels” by Nicholas Zaorsky, M.D. – Nicholas Zaorsky, M.D.. Licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0 via Wikimedia Commons – https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Wikipedia_medical_illustration_thoracic_outlet_syndrome_brachial_plexus_anatomy_with_labels.jpg#/media/File:Wikipedia_medical_illustration_thoracic_outlet_syndrome_brachial_plexus_anatomy_with_labels.jpg

>What can you try at home to help this pain?  Nod your head in little tiny nods, like you are nodding "yes" to getting better. Also, ice is helpful after you first hurt your neck and heat for stiff muscles.

photo (1)

 

 

Give us a call at 360-455-8014 to schedule an appointment to get relief from your whiplash pain!

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