Have you experienced pain for more than three months? You may be suffering from what is known as chronic pain, and it can present itself in numerous ways – from migraine headaches to lower back discomfort. According to a study done by the National Institutes of Health, nearly 50 million American adults deal with significant chronic pain.
The first step in treating pain is diagnosing it. Sports medicine & pain specialists like the experts at Tarpon Orthopedics in Plano, TX utilize cutting-edge methods to assess the root of what’s ailing you. In order to provide the most effective form of treatment, it’s important to first discuss your pain level with your physician, and provide an accurate description of its intensity.
Don’t worry; your doctor relies on more than word of mouth to make judgements. Advanced technologies such as electromyography (EMG) and nerve conduction studies are both excellent for gauging how well a patient’s nerve cells (motor neurons) and muscles are functioning.
The body is electric; yes, it makes electricity and employs it for every task we complete. Each of our nerve cells transmits electrical signals that cause the muscles to contract and move. EMGs convert these signals into invaluable information that your pain specialist can study. Nerve conduction study – while administered differently (via electrodes in lieu of needle) measures the speed of the aforementioned nerve signals. Signals that are lagging or faint show signs of muscle or nerve dysfunction.
Once your physician is able to access the cause of pain, there are a multitude of procedures that they can recommend for managing it. Nerve Blocks are local injections of anesthetic and steroid that can directly target the damaged nerve. Facilities such as Tarpon Orthopedics utilize these swift, outpatient procedures for chronic leg, arm, and back discomfort.
In addition to subduing pain, they can prevent the need for more serious surgeries, and give patients the strength to power through their essential physical therapy regimens. Suffering with cervical, thoracic, or lumbar pain? Epidural steroid injections can eliminate inflammation and stiffness, and can prevent pain from returning for weeks, or even months. If your spine-related pain isn’t responding to conservative methods, facet injections – which target damaged vertebra – could be a temporary solution. Your physician will most likely employ X-ray or ultrasound guidance to ensure that the medicine reaches the correct area.
Stem Cell Therapy is different than an injection, in that it isn’t simply masking the pain, but rather activating the healing process. However, all stem cells aren’t created equal. Tarpon Orthopedics and other advanced facilities utilize mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) because of their chameleon-like nature. More specifically, they have the ability to multiply and transform into a myriad of cell types. Collected from the bone marrow, fat, blood, or tissues, they are then injected into damaged regions to kick-start the recuperation process. This process has a high success rate for reducing pain and swelling; it also has a relatively low level of risk because the cells are obtained from the patient’s own body (rather than a foreign source).
Want to promote healing at a cellular level? Go one step farther with Platelet-Rich Plasma Therapy (PRP), an injection remedy that can stop inflammation & speed up the healing process. We have been aware of the unique clotting abilities that platelets have for some time; however, as it turns out, their naturally occurring proteins are also extremely vital in helping tissues heal. Because they are somewhat of a “unicorn” in the blood – making up only 1% of its total contents, PRP uses cutting-edge technology known as centrifugation to gather a concentration of valuable platelets. They’re then injected into inflamed tissues to mend them.
Whether you’re a seasoned athlete or a weekend warrior who’s ready to get back on track, it’s time to put an end to your chronic pain. Call Tarpon Orthopedics at 972-596-1059 to schedule a consultation today. Their caring staff specializes in diagnosing and treating a wide range of neuromusculoskeletal pain.