Shockwave Therapy - For Fast Pain Relief and Mobility Restoration

[vc_row][vc_column width="1/1"][vc_column_text]Active Sports Therapy is excited to introduce Shockwave therapy. Shockwave has proven to be helpful for many chronic conditions.

Who can benefit from Shockwave therapy?

Patients with chronic pain who have been treated unsuccessfully with other forms of therapy may benefit from Shockwave. Conditions such as shoulder pain, tennis elbow, heel spurs, hip pain, knee pain, carpal tunnel syndrome, calcification, or chronic tendinopathy treated by Shockwave have reported up to an 80% success rate.

What is Shockwave Therapy?

Shockwave therapy produces acoustic waves with high energy peaks that interact with tissue, causing effects such as accelerated tissue repair and cell growth, analgesia or pain relief, and mobility restoration. New blood vessel formation is caused by the therapy through creating capillary micro-ruptures in tendon and bone, thus triggering repair processes. With Shockwave therapy, reversal of chronic inflammation, stimulation of collagen production and the breaking up of calcium build up can be achieved.

Shockwave Therapy FAQ's

Does the treatment hurt?

There might be a slight feeling of discomfort during the treatment, however, treatments are short and last only about five minutes. As well, the intensity of the Shockwave can be adjusted to make the patient more comfortable.

How many treatments will I need?

The number of treatments will vary depending on each person, but the effects of each treatment are cumulative. Most people will not need more that 4-6 treatments per area. Many people will notice an improvement after their first treatment.

How often will the treatments occur?

Most patients will be treated 1 to 2 times per week depending on their response to the treatment and their tolerance for the treatment.

Will there be additional pain after a treatment?

Most patients experience immediate pain relief following a treatment, however within 2-4 hours after the treatment, there may be some soreness in the area.

Are there any restrictions after treatment?

It is recommended that a patient refrain from physical activity, particularly any activity that would heavily rely upon the treated area for 48 hours post each treatment.

Please give us a call at 403-278-1405 or email us at mail@activesportstherapy.ca to book a consult or treatment.

References: BTL's Shockwave Therapy Complete Edition

Image Credit: Ortho Canada[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row]

Carpal Tunnel Syndrome and Treatments

[vc_row][vc_column width="1/1"][vc_column_text]By: Dr. Corey Finan BSc., DC, CCSP, RMT, ART

Carpal Tunnel Syndrome (CTS) is a condition in which the patient feels pain, numbness, tingling and other symptoms that can be uncomfortable or painful in the hand and arm. It is caused by the compression of the nerve in the carpal tunnel, hence it’s name. The carpal tunnel is a narrow passageway on the palm side of the wrist. The issue is related to the median nerve which goes from your forearm and through the carpal tunnel passageway to your hand. It is responsible for sensation in your hands as well as muscle function. When this nerve is irritated, or the passageway is narrowed, then we feel the symptoms of Carpal Tunnel Syndrome.

Causes can range from arthritis and inflammation, workplace factors such as computer work and working with tools where repetitive motion is required. Obesity is a risk factor, and females tend to suffer from this condition more often than men.

Carpal Tunnel Syndrome will usually start off progressing in a gradual way. The most common symptoms include the following:

Tingling and Numbness – this could be in your hand or in your fingers and is often felt in the thumb, index, middle or ring fingers. The sensation may travel from the wrist and even into the arm. You may feel these sensations when the hands are outstretched doing something such as holding a newspaper or book, or a smart phone.

Weakness – You may feel like your hands are weaker than usual. This could be due to the numbness and the issues that are happening in the median nerve.

Preventative Measures:

Other Things to Consider: 

Carpal Tunnel Syndrome can occur in anyone, but there are some things that you may want to look at first before thinking you have CTS.  First, there is a much more common cause for numbness and pain in the hand / fingers, and that is Cubital Tunnel Syndrome, which is a nerve entrapment in the elbow where the nerves enter the forearm.  Often repetitive strain at the hand and wrist can cause the muscles in the forearm and elbow to become tight, and thus compress the nerves to your hand.  Another important caveat would be to consider whether conservative care would be a better alternative for you, or if surgery may be the way to go. A trial of conservative care, specifically Active Release Therapy (ART), may prevent the need for surgery.  You can easily determine that by doing a Diagnostic Ultrasound of the Median Nerve at the Carpal Tunnel.  If the nerve is enlarged, you can be certain that it is inflamed at the tunnel.  This would indicate that the decompression surgery typical of CTS surgery would be of benefit to you.  However, if the nerve is of normal size, then you should not do the surgery, and seek conservative care and look elsewhere in the body for the problem.  These are simple guidelines that can help you determine which direction to go.  All of the Doctors at AST can order the Diagnostic Ultrasound imaging and can interpret the results and give guidance as needed.

Treatment From Our Clinic

If you think you may be suffering from Carpal Tunnel Syndrome, our clinic has several treatments that might benefit you. Active Release Techniques for one can be very helpful to treat this syndrome. The practitioner will evaluate your mobility and tightness of the area which will usually be due to the presence of scar tissue. By using manual pressure, the practitioner can break up the scar tissue to lessen the pressure on the median nerve, resulting in a reduction in symptoms. Many people can find relief in just a few treatments!  There are several forearm muscle stretches and exercises that we can teach you to help remove some of the symptoms, and more importantly keep them at bay once you improve.  We also provide IMS which can help with pain relief in the forearm muscles, and Graston Technique which is an instrument assisted soft tissue treatment designed to help break down scar tissue and release tight muscles.  Shockwave Therapy and Laser Therapy can also be additional therapies that can speed recovery.  We have seen hundreds of cases of Carpal Tunnel Syndrome over the years with most resolving successfully in a relatively short period of time.

If you believe that you might be suffering from Carpal Tunnel Syndrome, please give us call to book your appointment.

*This blog is not intended to officially establish a physician-patient relationship, to replace the services of a trained physician, naturopathic doctor, physical therapist or chiropractor or otherwise to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment.  [/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row]

Treating Piriformis Syndrome

[vc_row][vc_column width="1/1"][vc_column_text]By: Dr. Corey Finan BSc., DC, CCSP, RMT, ART

In order to properly treat piriformis syndrome, it is important to understand that the piriformis muscle is either spasming, or is inflamed.  Both situations can cause their own problems.  If you are getting numbness down your leg, the muscle is probably spasmed.  A spasmed muscle can cause local pain as well, so hip pain with numbness down the leg is a very common presentation of piriformis syndrome.  An inflamed muscle will cause the sciatic nerve that sits in close proximity to it to also get inflamed in some cases.  When this occurs, you will typically feel pain in the hip along with a burning pain radiating down your leg.

Understanding which situation is causing your particular symptoms can allow your practitioner to accurately treat it.  For example, a spasmed muscle will require work on the muscle to relax it, and techniques such as Active Release, Shockwave Therapy (in chronic cases), deep tissue massage and even Dry Needling (IMS) can help.  These all work to relax the spasm.  Home stretching would also be of benefit.

Active Release Techniques or ART is the gold standard for soft tissue treatment and is extremely effective at treating piriformis syndrome.  The practitioner starts with your muscle in a shortened position, and your leg is then moved to bring the muscle into a lengthened position while the doctor’s thumb tensions the muscle in the direction opposite to the muscle.  Think of a string with beads on it.  If you want to remove the beads, you would place your thumb beside the bead, and pull on the string.  The shear force generated unwinds the tightened muscle, causing the release of tension.  Hence the name Active Release.

Shockwave Therapy utilizes a compressive pulse of air that generates a shockwave to disrupt the muscle and create a release of tension.  It is the equivalent to about 5 times a normal ultrasound wave.  Thus it is a significant pulse created into the soft tissues of the hip to cause the spasm to decrease.  It is great for chronic conditions, but is ineffective for new injuries.

Dry needling can be used to release the spasm from the inside out.  Using an acupuncture needle, the practitioner can insert the needle right into the spasmed part of the muscle causing a local twitch response that in effect resets the electrical tone of the muscle back to the baseline, causing a release in the muscle tension.  It can be fast and effective, but it does not lengthen the muscle like Active Release does, so you run the risk of the spasm coming back again.

Deep tissue massage is great at releasing muscle spasms through active massaging of the affected muscle, and if a stretch component is added by the therapist it can be very effective.  It is considered a passive treatment, and unfortunately if the muscle is not also lengthened, then the same results as dry needling can occur where the spasm recurs.

If the muscle is inflamed, then things change somewhat in regards to care.  First and foremost, Active Release can still be performed to help release the muscle tightness or inflammation, and cause increased blood flow, oxygen flow and create and environment for healing.  On top of active release, low intensity laser can be extremely helpful in reducing the inflammation.  If it is badly inflamed, we can also bring in the game ready ice compression machine which will circulate near freezing water through a compressive cuff (similar to a blood pressure cuff) and cool down the hip muscles removing deep and/or plentiful inflammation.

Any and all of the following treatments for Piriformis Syndrome can be found at AST.  If you are suffering from piriformis syndrome quit suffering and give us a call.

*This blog is not intended to officially establish a physician-patient relationship, to replace the services of a trained physician, naturopathic doctor, physical therapist or chiropractor or otherwise to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment.  [/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row]