Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Leg Pain

Really!  This one is hard to believe.  A lady presented with leg pain, groin pain, knee pain and a walk like Chester from Gunsmoke.  I sat with her in a free consult and asked what had happened to lead her here today.  Two hip replacements, a knee they were injecting with rooster stuff  (Person #2 who didn't assess), recent back injections for pain, (person #3 who didn't assess).  I stood her up and she leaned to the right with all of her weight.  Asked a simple question did they leave you short in that hip?  "Yes, but no one wants to admit to it.  But my last session with the PT, he mentioned it and gave me a lift he had handy."  (Person #1 who did assess but didn't help!)

One year later, she is at a loss with the constant enduring pain.  I went and tore up a cardboard box lid and put under her foot and keep layering until she felt even.  "Wow that took the pain out of my leg immediately."

We did fascia work, heat around the hip rotators, light traction to the leg and kept the cardboard for the moment in her shoe.  She walked out with a flex in the knee instead of the slamming back she walked in with.  Sent her to a shoe maker, gave her some home suggestions that her husband can help out with.

She is looking forward to walking more normal and having less knee and back pain. 

All I can say is REALLY!  How can the medical society keep overlooking the basics?  A 1/2 inch leg length would make any of us walk like Chester. 

"If you don't assess you simply guess"

Fainting Cured

Assessment came in another form this time.  I have been training and doing manual therapy with a young girl for Volleyball.  I got a call that she wouldn't be in because she had fainted at school and they were going to take her to the doctor and run some tests to find out the cause.  Fast forward several weeks later, she returns with no diagnosis.  I started asking questions about her eating habits which lead to a hypoglycemia possibility.  One week later and more protien to begin the day and eating more often, she is symptom free and excited to get back on track with her training.

Sad that we have lost sight of the most obvious with young kids and their eating.  Or should I say non-eating.  A simple conversation before all the expensive tests or at least the conversation with the expensive tests might have served this girl differently. 

Happy Ending-Assess (ask questions) Don't Guess (keep asking questions)

Nutrition the lost art!

Thursday, April 12, 2012

Shoulder Impingement

Short story on why to assess.  I helped a lady recently who had the misdiagnosis of Parkinson's.  Through an assessment I found shoulder impingement which was causing the shaking.  I sent her for an orthopedic exam and the doctor comfirmed a frozen shoulder with impingement.

Moral to the story:  If you don't assess you simply guess.

Happy Therapy


Sunday, February 5, 2012


I want to encourage all of you therapist to get in the habit and ask for the patients MRI report and learn to understand the impression.  There are too many reasons for hip pain, back pain, shoulder pain, cervical, etc.  When the patient brings you the MRI report, you can give an honest opinion if massage therapy will really help or if it will be temporary and they should seek further medical care.  I know we all want to help and want to do it holistically, but sometimes it truely is a medical case that needs allopathic help.  We can love and support our clients no matter what, lend an ear when no one else will listen.  They believe in you, so take the time to really understand their condition.  Knowing is far superior than guessing.

Happy Therapy!

Saturday, January 21, 2012

Anterior Rotation and Assessment

I just worked on a PGA golf professional which has been experiencing back pain for the past year.  He has been seen by chiropractors, physical therapist, and massage therapists.  It still amazes me when he tells me they didn't assess all the motions that the back can do.  Why?  Isn't it logical to first look at all the motions the spine makes before treating?  Anyway, after watching him forward flex, backbend, rotate and side bend.  It was obvious that there was a problem at his transition point on the right hand side.  On his finish (extreme rotation) he hurts at the very end of the movement (bone), on side bending he hurt at the very end of the movement (bone).  A trigger point doesn't do this and think this is a chronic positional problem.  Psoas was hypertonic on the right, right QL hypertonic with the same point on the other side equally as tight and hypertonic.  Now think this through, psoas when tight can flex and side bend him right, when QL is tight it side bends and rotates the vertebra it is attached to.  So long story short, I had him evaluated by another Chiropractor to confirm what I felt the muscular structure was doing and she concurred with me without a doubt.    There is much more to tell about this and how he will be treated to correct this, but for now I just want to make a point. 

The point:  Assess don't guess.