Orthopedic Associates' Blog

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Orthopedic Associates' Blog


Causes, Symptoms and Treatments for Arthritis Pain
Causes, Symptoms and Treatments for Arthritis Pain
By: Dr. Burke  Arthritis pain can present itself in many ways: as a dull ache, a burning feeling, a sharp pain or a pressure that feels like there’s a vice grip on your joints. Either way, it’s an ongoing challenge to manage pain from arthritis, which is the leading cause of pain and disability worldwide. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) estimate that 52.5 million adults have been diagnosed with some form of arthritis. There’s plenty of information out there about pain remedies, exercise and medication, so how do you know what’s right for you? Causes First, let’s take a look at what causes arthritis pain. The term itself can describe more than 200 rheumatic diseases and conditions that affect joints, including osteoporosis and diseases of the connective tissues. There isn’t a single type of arthritis, so the causes can include: Injury that leads to degenerative arthritis Abnormal metabolism that leads to gout and pseudo gout ...

What’s Cubital Tunnel Syndrome and how do you treat it?
What’s Cubital Tunnel Syndrome and how do you treat it?
By: Dr. Robert Bell Cubital Tunnel Syndrome isn’t a common name but you may be very familiar with its effect. It can manifest a sharp, tingling pain and weakness in your forearm that extends down through your wrist, hand, and ring and small fingers. Cubital Tunnel Syndrome is the second most common nerve compression condition in the forearm region after Carpal Tunnel Syndrome. (NCBI) The ulnar nerve runs from the lower neck region to the tip of the hand. The cubital tunnel is a narrow region under a protrusion of bone called the medial epicondyle on the inside of the elbow joint. (AAOS) You may be more familiar with this area by its common name of the “funny bone”. Causes of Cubital Tunnel Syndrome Cubital Tunnel Syndrome occurs when the ulnar nerve becomes entrapped, irritated, or compressed in the inside portion of the elbow joint. There are several known causes of Cubital Tunnel Syndrome, such as: Overuse of the elbow region - Repetitious movements of the elbow, like playing a sport, using a hammer, or working ...

4 everyday stretches to avoid Carpal Tunnel Syndrome
4 everyday stretches to avoid Carpal Tunnel Syndrome
By: Dr. Bell Carpal Tunnel Syndrome occurs through overuse and tension of muscles through your wrists and forearms. The U.S. Department of Labor reports that carpal tunnel is the primary cause for almost half of missed work time among U.S. employees. (Arthritis.org) Our Orthopedic Associates team compiled these four stretches to help you avoid Carpal Tunnel Syndrome. Shake your hands Pretend you just washed your hands and can’t find a towel to dry them. What do you do? You air-dry your hands by shaking them. Use that same technique by shaking your hands for one minute every hour. This helps relax your median nerve and flexor muscles to prevent cramping. An easy solution can be always air-drying your hands instead of using a hand towel, which may be better for your health with the germ-filled history of hand towels. Wrist flexes Extend your arm at shoulder height directly straight away from your body. Lock your elbow and place your palm facing downward. Spread out your fingers and place your other palm on the back of your extended hand. Gently push down on the extended ...

What are the warning signs of a broken wrist?
You’re on your way to work this morning when... Boom! You slip stepping off the curb. Your Starbucks cup and laptop bag go flying as you instinctively stretch out your hand to stop your fall. As you gather your dignity and work items, you can’t help but think: “Hm, that didn’t feel right.” You look down at your wrist and everything looks normal, but something doesn’t feel right. A little voice inside your head says you might have just hurt your wrist, it maybe even broken. How do you know whether your wrist is okay? Do you know the warning signs of a broken wrist? There are several symptoms of wrist injuries that may be indicators of a broken wrist: Swelling If your wrist is severely injured, you will experience a noticeable amount of swelling around the damaged area. It may also be warm and sensitive to touch. Pain opening/closing hand If your wrist is broken, you may experience significant pain that increases when you try opening or closing your hand. Even if you don’t have any pain opening or closing your hand, a small ...

3 Common Surgical Techniques for Repairing Broken Wrists
It’s wintertime in St. Louis, which means snow…and ice. A simple slip and fall on the sidewalk can be a big bruise to your ego. It’s also one of the leading causes of broken wrists. The most important bone in the forearm leading into the wrist joint is the radius. The radius is designed to rotate and flex with the wrist’s motion. The part of the radius that extends into the wrist is called the distal radius. The distal radius is the most vulnerable to fractures from falling because it covers over 75% of the wrist’s surface area and bears the most weight when you put your hand down to catch yourself during a fall. Initial Diagnosis of Wrist Injuries Orthopedic specialists often diagnose wrist injuries using x-rays. If doctors are concerned about collateral damage throughout your wrist, they may also order CT (Computed Tomography) or MRI (Magnetic Resonance Imaging) scans. These scans allow doctors to inspect and assess other parts of the wrist joint, ligaments, and other minor bones, such as the scaphoid, that might have been affected during impact from ...

Helping Hands: How Grandparents Shape Lives
"Happy or sad I think that grandmothers are the wisest, most understanding people in the world (excluding, of course, grandfathers)." -Jane Moore, age 10

 Richard and Helen Exley (Eds.), To Grandma and Grandpa As the Baby Boomer generation shifts into the role of “grandparent”, more and more research is being done on the social, financial, and developmental impact that grandparents have on their grandchildren. In the past, parents were given the majority of the credit for the emotional and physical evolution of their kids, but the increased research indicates that grandparents play an equally important role in early-adult-education.

 Additionally, According to AARP, because of trying economic circumstances and increased military deployment, 2.6 million (up 8% from the previous year) grandparents are the primary caregivers for America’s youth. Even if you are not a primary caregiver, you have the ability to influence your grandchildren’s development beyond what you had initially thought.

 The unfortunate thing is that as Boomers age into the role of “grandma” or “grandpa”, so do their joints. It’s important to keep a pulse on your physical health so you don’t miss ...