BOOK AN APPOINTMENT

Monthly Archives: March 2016

De Quervain’s Disease: What you need to know from MISI

By | Hand Relief | No Comments

De-Quervain's-Disease-Treatments-MISI

Named after the Swiss surgeon, Dr. Fritz De Quervain, who first identified the condition, De Quervain tenosynovitis, more commonly referred to as De Quervain’s disease, is a hand condition affecting a patient’s ability to move his or her thumb. This happens when the tendons on the thumb side of the wrist become swollen, causing pain when twisting, grasping or making a fist.

The causes of this painful hand condition include chronic overuse of the wrist, direct injury to the wrist or tendon area, and inflammatory arthritis. One interesting fact about De Quervain tenosynovitis is that women are more likely than men to suffer from this condition, especially after pregnancy. It used to be referred to as washerwoman’s sprain or mother’s wrist.

De Quervain’s Treatment

Treatment for De Quervain’s disease is aimed at reducing inflammation, maintaining movement in the thumb and preventing recurrence. In order to properly diagnose the condition, a hand surgeon will perform a simple test called the Finkelstein’s Test. The patient makes a fist with their fingers closed over the thumb with the wrist angled towards their little finger. If this causes pain on the thumb side of your wrist, chances are it’s De Quervain’s disease.

De Quervain’s treatment options consist of the following:

  • A splint, worn every day and night for 4-6 weeks, to hold the affected area firm and still
  • Ice applied to the affected area in order to reduce inflammation
  • Anti-inflammatory medications, such as naproxen or ibuprofen, to reduce pain and swelling
  • Corticosteroids injections to relieve pain and inflammation

In cases where the condition does not respond to conventional treatment options, surgery may need to be considered. At MISI, our approach involves a 2cm incision over the affected tendons in the wrist area in order to release the pressure and allow more room for tendon movement. This procedure takes as little as seven minutes with an average recovery period of seven days.

Chronic Pain Relief: The Psychological Effects of Pain

By | Pain Relief | No Comments

The-Psychological-Effects-of-Pain

More than 100 million adults in the U.S. suffer from chronic pain. Chronic pain often not only affects the body but also the mind and emotions of a patient as well. These emotions have a big impact on how a patient finds chronic pain relief.

An individual who battles physical pain every day has many mental and emotional obstacles to overcome.  For instance, people who suffer from chronic pain are more likely to suffer from depression. The frustration, anger, hopelessness, anxiety and sadness that accompany chronic pain can be too much for someone to handle, leaving them drained of energy and feeling defeated. Long-term pain can put stress on the brain and cause cognitive issues such as low mood, exhaustion, and concentration and memory difficulties, no matter what the underlying pain condition is.

Chronic pain and its psychological effects

Chronic pain and its psychological effects have the ability to reduce a patient’s quality of life. In some cases, the psychological effects of pain can outlive the physical pain itself and become the major health disorder. For instance, under-managed chronic pain may lead to:

  • Increased stress
  • Depressed mood
  • Insomnia and exhaustion
  • Decreased memory and concentration

A chronic pain management program should contain aspects that encourage a sound mental and emotional wellness component. Over time, cognitive strategies and lifestyle changes can improve the psychological effects of chronic pain. There are no easy solutions, but here are some simple treatment options that can help provide pain relief:

  • Meditation and relaxation techniques can reduce muscle tension caused by pain.
  • Regular physical activity, including strengthening and flexibility exercises, can improve pain threshold.
  • Healthy eating can reduce painful symptoms such as inflammation. Research suggest that certain foods help reduce pain more than others.
  • Staying socially active and keeping positive people around you can improve mental stability and decrease likeliness of depression and low mood.

These activities can improve psychological health, reduce stress, improve sleep and increase confidence, happiness and self-esteem. Pain relief isn’t just about treating physical ailments. In order to truly understand and alleviate the burden of chronic pain, the mind needs to be treated as well.