215.741.4410 Two Convenient Locations in: Langhorne, PA

Oxford Valley Pain & Spine Center's Blog

Managing Low Back Pain

Close to 4 out of every 5 people will experience low back. After the flu, it is the main reason people lose time from work.

Low back pain is different that leg pain which effects the buttocks and leg. Pain that radiates to the leg is know as sciatica. Radiculopathy is another leg pain condition. Lower extremity pain is usually caused by nerve compression due to problems with the spinal canal. Causes can include an effected disc (a ruptured disc or a herniated disc), spinal stenosis or bone spurs. Spondylolisthesis is another cause of lower back pain and leg pain. It happens when nerve roots become compressed because of a slipped vertebral bone.

Low back pain can also happen due to muscle or ligament strain or sprain. Inflammation of the spine joints can cause low back pain. So too can disc degeneration. Osteoporosis, tumors and infections can also cause low back pain.

Our pain management doctors will work to determine the cause of the pain by:

  • Asking the patient oral questions:
  • Working to find out the path of the pain from beginning point to end point.
  • Determining what kind of pain the patient has – shooting, throbbing, burning, or other type.
  • We often have the patient undergo imaging tests of the spine to determine the cause. Sometimes, we determine the cause through injections.

If you have any type of back pain, or know someone with back pain, please contact our office for an appointment by calling 215.741.4410. We’re located near the Oxford Valley Mall. We will work to find the cause of your pain and to treat it so you can stop suffering and start living.

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Managing Summer Pain

Summer Weather and Pain


The warm summer weather is tempting for many people. It invites gardening, fixing-up around the house, walking in the local parks and biking around the neighborhood. It’s always good to get direct advice from our pain management doctors, Drs. Anju and Sanjay Madnani, before doing anything that might be strenous.

It’s also important to consider the elements. Weather can affect people diffeently. People with arthritis often complain about the weather. For some, warm weather may give comfort while for others it gives pain. Still, there are a few points to keep in mind.

  • Hydration: It’s more important to keep your bodily fluids at proper levels. Be sure to drink plenty of water and use proper amounts of sun block. It’s also good to eat a healthy diet.
  • Barometric Pressure:Barometric pressure changes can cause inflammation. The wrong pressure can change the liquid volume in your body which can impact bones and nerves. Generally, the barometric pressure is higher in the summer which is good for the liquid volumen and thus the bones and nerves.
  • Exercise: The warm weather can make swimming and water exercises possible. Water is often a good place to exercise because it places less emphasis on the joints and is generally good for the back. Biking also is good for the joints. It’s much better than running because the legs don’t constantly pound on the ground.
  • Humidity: Some people claim that different humidity levels can also cause pain. Again, the pain differs from person to person.
  • Practical Suggestions: Stay indoors and enjoy the air-conditioning.  Wear light-weather clothes. This means light and white colors and lighter natural fabrics like silk and cotton. Lotions can also make you more comfortable.

Contact the Oxford Valley Pain and Spine Center to get advise on summer exercise and managing the summer heat.

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Pilates and Pain Management

 

Pilates exercise

About Pilates: Pilates is a physical fitness system developed in the early 20th century by the Greek German-born Joseph Pilates. As of 2005, there were 11 million people practicing the discipline regularly and 14,000 instructors in the United States.

It’s a refreshing mind-body workout.

By emphasizing proper breathing, correct spinal and pelvic alignment, and concentration on smooth, flowing movement; you become acutely in tune with your body. You actually learn how to control your body’s movement.

In Pilates, the quality of movement is valued over quantity of repetitions. Proper breathing is essential and helps you execute movements with maximum power and efficiency. Last but not least, learning to breathe properly can reduce stress.

Gain long, lean muscles and flexibility.

More conventional or traditional workouts are weight bearing and tend to build short, bulky muscles – the type most prone to injury. Pilates elongates and strengthens, improving muscle elasticity and joint mobility. A body with balanced strength and flexibility is less likely to be injured.

Pilates helps create an evenly conditioned body, improve sports performance, and prevent injuries.

In the same vein, a lot of these same conventional workouts tend to work the same muscles. Weak muscles tend to get weaker and strong muscles tend to get stronger. The result is muscular imbalance – a primary cause of injury and chronic back pain.

Pilates conditions the whole body, even the ankles and feet. No muscle group is over trained or under trained. Your entire musculature is evenly balanced and conditioned, helping you enjoy daily activities and sports with greater ease, better performance and less chance of injury.

Learn how to move efficiently:

Pilates exercises train several muscle groups at once in smooth, continuous movements. By developing proper technique, you can actually re-train your body to move in safer, more efficient patterns of motion – which is invaluable for injury recovery, sports performance, good posture and optimal health.

It’s gentle…

Many of the exercises are performed in reclining or sitting positions, and most are low impact and partially weight bearing. Pilates is so safe, it is used in physical therapy facilities to rehabilitate injuries

About Pilates: Pilates is a physical fitness system developed in the early 20th century by the Greek German-born Joseph Pilates. It is especially practiced in the United States (where Pilates lived, developed and taught his method) and the United Kingdom (where he lived and taught early stages of his method). As of 2005, there were 11 million people practicing the discipline regularly and 14,000 instructors in the United States.

A refreshing mind-body workout

By emphasizing proper breathing, correct spinal and pelvic alignment, and concentration on smooth, flowing movement, you become acutely in tune with your body. You actually learn how to control its movement.

In Pilates the quality of movement is valued over quantity of repetitions. Proper breathing is essential, and helps you execute movements with maximum power and efficiency. Last but not least, learning to breathe properly can reduce stress.

Gain long, lean muscles and flexibility

More conventional or traditional workouts are weight bearing and tend to build short, bulky muscles – the type most prone to injury. Pilates elongates and strengthens, improving muscle elasticity and joint mobility. A body with balanced strength and flexibility is less likely to be injured.

Create an evenly conditioned body, improve sports performance, and prevent injuries

In the same vein, a lot of these same conventional workouts tend to work the same muscles. This leads weak muscles tend to get weaker and strong muscles tend to get stronger. The result is muscular imbalance – a primary cause of injury and chronic back pain.

Pilates conditions the whole body, even the ankles and feet. No muscle group is over trained or under trained. Your entire musculature is evenly balanced and conditioned, helping you enjoy daily activities and sports with greater ease, better performance and less chance of injury.

Learn how to move efficiently

Pilates exercises train several muscle groups at once in smooth, continuous movements. By developing proper technique, you can actually re-train your body to move in safer, more efficient patterns of motion – in

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Common Questions About Back Pain

Some Common Questions and Answers about Back Pain

 

What conditions cause back pain?

4 out of every 5 people will suffer some sort of lower back pain during their life. Almost anything can cause back pain. Some of the more notable causes are:

  • Muscles that become strained because of excess lifting, pushing, pulling or any other reason
  • Injuries due to excess workplace loads, falls or other accidents
  • Herniated/slipped discs
  • Being overweight or even obese
  • Bad posture
  • Pregnancy
  • You’re getting older
  • You’re not in good physical shape.

When should you see our office for back pain management?

  • If you suffer from numbness or tingling
  • If you have an accident of any type
  • If your pain doesn’t get better with rest or a good night’s sleep
  • If you have difficulty in going to the bathroom, feel weak, have a fever
  • If you have weight loss that you can’t explain.

How is back pain diagnosed?

These four tests are the most used tests:

  • X-Rays: Used for medical imaging to diagnose and treat disease.
  • Computerized Tomography (CT) Scan: This is a special type of x-ray that is more detailed than a common X-ray. Doctors can diagnose osteoporosis and other muscle and bone problems. Doctors also use this test to see of there is a blood clot, a tumor, or even an infection. Some diseases such as heart disease or cancer can be viewed. Internal injuries and bleeding can also be viewed with a CT scan. CT scans are helpful if you are having surgery, a biopsy or radiation therapy.
  • Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) Test: This test allows the doctor some ability to see soft tissue, herniated discs and damage to the nerve. If you are claustrophobic, an open MRI (instead of enclosed one) may be an option.
  • Myleogram: This is another type of x-ray procedure. It uses a medical machine called a fluoroscope which takes moving x-rays. A dye or a contrast material will be used. This test is used by your doctor to see if you have inflammation, an infection, a herniated disc, a spinal tumor/lesion or spinal stenosis.

Are there non-surgical treatments for back pain?

Yes. Some of the common non-surgical treatments include anti-inflammatory medicine, pain medication, physical therapy and reducing your physical activity.

What back-pain conditions usually require some type of surgery?

  • Surgery can be useful for these conditions:
  • Disk Degeneration
  • Fractures
  • Herniated Discs
  • Pinched nerves – especially if the pinch is severe
  • Spinal stenosis (a narrowing of the spinal bones), spinal deformity and a compressed spinal cord.
  • Some nerve damage problems – especially if you have radiating pain, acute pain, tingling in the extremities, or a loss of bladder or bowel control.

Are there non-invasive/non-surgical treatments for back pain?

Vertebroplasty may be an option. This procedure can help with stabilize spinal fractures.

Are there steps I can take to help manage my back pain?

Yes. Here are few recommended things you can do.

  • Get regular exercise. That’s why we are trying to have a yoga, pilates or Zumba class.
  • Make sure you stretch before you exercise
  • Don’t sit and don’t stand in one position for too much time.
  • Diet to get your weight under control
  • Use the proper equipment to lift of move heavy objects. Use proper lifting/moving techniques
  • Don’t smoke

Source – Twin Cities Community Hospital

 

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Yoga and Pain Management

You may not realize it, but chronic pain caused by injury, arthritis, fibromyalgia or other conditions can be greatly reduced by practicing yoga. Millions of people all over the world have been following the ancient Hindu discipline to promote harmony between mind, body and soul for centuries. Practicing yoga can help increase strength and flexibility, develop muscle tone, and manage weight. Yoga also has multiple spiritual and mental benefits that can alleviate stress to promote overall health.

Here are 4 ways practicing yoga can help with chronic pain management:

  1. Flexibility. By practicing the same stretches over and over, the body is gradually loosened. As overall flexibility is increased, muscles and other soft tissues become more relaxed. In a few weeks’ time, those with back pain and shoulder pain can notice a decrease in pain from everyday activities.
  2. Strength. Yoga strengthens the core, or abdominal muscles. A stronger core provides for a healthier body. Those with chronic back pain who practiced yoga to strengthen their core found that they were less likely to have extreme pain.
  3. Posture. Healthy upright posture also helps with back pain.
  4. Stress Reduction. While going through the motions of yoga, the stress of everyday life seems to slip away. Yoga requires exact concentration on breathing and holding specific poses. Stress causes muscles to contract or spasm, which increases pain sensations. Decreasing stress directly helps to reduce pain levels for many patients suffering from pain associated with illness or injury.

Yoga and Pain Management in Langhorne, PA

For more information on how yoga can relieve pain, or any other pain management techniques and services we provide, contact Oxford Valley Pain and Spine Center today. Drs. Sanjay Madnani, and Anju Madnani look forward to meeting you. We can be reached at our Langhorne office at 215-741-4410.

 

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Managing Chronic Pain

Options for Treating Chronic Pain

It is estimated that currently nearly 100 million Americans suffer from chronic pain. Chronic pain is categorized by pain lasting longer than 6 months result of the presence or absence of injury that continues longer than required for the body’s normal course of healing. Chronic pain can cause a multitude of secondary issues for patients including anxiety, depression, significant weight gain or loss, and medical debt.

Chronic pain can be caused by many problems, or no detectable medical problems. Diagnoses for chronic pain can be a trial and error process between patient and doctor. Just as attempting to find the cause of chronic pain is a trial and error process, treating the chronic pain is just the same. Here is a look into some treatment options available for patients suffering from chronic pain.

Medications

Medications are often the first course of action for combating chronic pain. Generally physicians recommend conservative over the counter anti-inflammatory medications. If anti-inflammatory drugs do not produce a result, corticosteroids may be prescribed next. In extreme chronic pain cases, narcotic drugs such as codeine, hydrocodone, morphine and oxycodone. Prescription narcotic drugs are very addictive so many doctors limit prescription length, dose, and try alternative methods for pain relief before resulting to this class of drugs.

Injections

Injections are one of the most effective courses of treatment for chronic pain. Different types of injections block nerve receptors that carry pain signals through the body to the brain. If these signals cannot be sent to the brain, then the brain doesn’t recognize that the body is in pain. A drawback of injection therapy is that they are temporary, and can become costly over time. Injections are administered in the affected area, often directly into a nerve. Unfortunately, there is a possibility of injections failing.

Electrical Stimulation

Transcutaneous Electrical Nerve Stimulation or TENS therapy is when a small sticky pad connected to a small battery-powered machine delivers electrical pulses to the area to help stimulate nerves. This treatment does not cause any pain, and for some patients, it is considered relaxing.

Surgery

If other methods of treatment fail, surgery may be an option for certain patients. This option is used as a last resort, and does not always end pain. Surgery may lessen pain over time.

Multidisciplinary Approach

Most patients benefit from a combination of the above approaches to relieving chronic pain. In addition to the therapies mention above, losing weight, rest, eating a well-balanced diet, and regular low-impact exercise can help assist chronic pain symptoms.

Pain Management in Langhorne, PA

For more information about pain management techniques and services we provide, contact Oxford Valley Pain and Spine Center today. Drs. Sanjay Madnani, and Anju Madnani look forward to meeting you. We can be reached at our Langhorne office at 215-741-4410

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SOME Q and A on PAIN

Q. What is the difference between acute and chronic pain?
A. Acute pain is brought on by illness, surgery or an injury, and can last a short time. Chronic pain is an ongoing condition, usually in the back or neck. Chronic pain can also be related to illness or the musculoskeletal system.
Q. What can cause chronic pain?
A. Many conditions can lead to chronic pain, including nerve pain, muscle pain, carpal tunnel syndrome, neck pain, back pain and osteoarthritis.
Q. How do I know when to seek help for pain management?
A. When a patient’s pain is not responding to customary treatments within a reasonable amount of time, seek out a pain specialist. Many times people see management as a last resort and tend to just live with the pain.
Q. What treatments are available to manage pain?
A. Aside from anti-inflammatory drugs, pain killers and muscle relaxers; alternative therapies include pain stimulator insertion, shockwave therapy and steroid injections.
Q. Will all my pain be relieved?
A. The degree of pain relief you may experience from interventional pain management is difficult to predict. Most patients report a reduction in their level of pain of 50% to 100%. Our goal is to help our patients achieve the highest level of pain control possible to facilitate a return to a productive satisfying lifestyle.

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Lumbar Epidural Steroid Injections for Sciatica

Lower back and leg pain referred to as “sciatica” can range from a mere nuisance to downright debilitating. Sciatica is a result of another medical condition, such as lumbar spinal stenosis, degenerative disc disease, spondylolisthesis, or pregnancy, that causes inflammation in the sciatic nerve. This inflammation and friction on the sciatic nerve causes pain that may come and go, but can worsen with time. Although maintaining a healthy weight and exercise regimen can help with managing sciatic pain, Lumbar Epidural Steroid Injections (ESI) offer an effective treatment option.

Treatment for sciatica with oral steroids and pain relievers isn’t as beneficial to patients because oral medications are dispersed throughout the entire body, thus less potent in relation to the specific afflicted area. ESI procedures use floroscopy, which is an x-ray machine that is on a live-feed. By being able to see exactly where the steroid-anesthetic combination of medicine needs to be injected, your doctor can deliver the medication directly to the nerve that is causing the pain within the epidural wall of the spinal column. The injection takes a few moments to be fully administered as it seeps through the sciatic nerve, calming and soothing inflammation. The most common site for lumbar epidural steroid injections are between the L4 and L5 vertebra found in the lower back just above the tailbone, and this outpatient procedure is over 50% effective in lessening, or eradicating sciatic pain. Most patients report significant relief in leg pain and moderate relief in the lower back.

ESI therapy is a temporary relief for sciatic pain. Patients report feeling positive effects from the injection anywhere from as little as one week to as long as one year. Some patients have to repeat the injections (spread out over the course of time determined by your doctor) up to 3 times for the full benefits.

Pain Management Services in Langhorne, PA

If you are interested in epidural steroid injections or any other procedures we offer, contact us today, or call us at 215.741.4410. We look forward to serving you!

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What is Fibromyalgia?

What is Fibromyalgia?

Fibroymyalgia tender points

Millions of Americans each year suffer from chronic pain, a serious medical condition that can persist for months or, in some cases, years! Chronic pain can cause serious disruptions for most  patients, including taking them away from work or school for extended periods of time. Chronic pain can develop due to several conditions, including Fibromyalgia.

Fibromyalgia is a disorder, characterized by mood swings, fatigue, difficulties with concentration, and widespread pains throughout the musculoskeletal system. This condition can occur in patients of any age, although it most commonly occurs in women. Symptoms of this condition can be brought on following surgery, infection, or simply due to stress. For some patients, however, symptoms can appear completely on their own, without any triggering event. Fibromyalgia is usually found in patients who also have additional health issues, such as irritable bowel syndrome, anxiety, depression, or temporomandibular joint (TMJ) disorders.

While no cure yet for Fibromyalgia, there are many ways to effectively manage chronic pain associated with this condition. Some of the most common treatments for Fibromyalgia, include:

  • Medications. Anti-inflammatory pain relievers are usually the first method of treatment prescribed for patients with this condition. Over-the-counter or prescription pain relievers are considered effective treatments for the condition. Narcotics are not usually recommended for fibromyalgia, because they can cause the patient to become dependent on them, and may lead to additional pain in the future.
  • Injections. Injections are often used to help fibromyalgia patients manage their pain and inflammation. Injections will be used in a targeted area, along with a local anesthetic to relieve discomfort. Injections for fibromyalgia-related chronic pain are usually composed of corticosteroids.
  • A combination of treatments. Most patients will usually benefit from a combination of treatments to treat chronic pain associated with fibromyalgia. Your doctor will evaluate your condition with a series of diagnostic tests to determine what treatments will be best for you.

Fibromyalgia and Chronic Pain Treatment in Langhorne and Bensalem

If you are dealing with a chronic pain condition, like fibromyalgia, and need help managing your symptoms, contact us today! We can be reached at 215.741.4410. We look forward to seeing you!

 

 

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What is Acupuncture?

Acupuncture is one of the oldest alternative therapies in the entire world, and is used to alleviate symptoms associated with various medical and pain-related conditions. A traditional Chinese treatment, acupuncture involves the insertion of small, thin needles into the skin and into tissues at precise locations. The goal of this procedure is to relieve any underlying pain.

Acupuncture is usually combined with other, more conventional treatment methods, including prescription medications, to relieve a patient’s pain more quickly and easily, so that they can resume their normal activities.

During the procedure, thin, sterile, single-use needles will be inserted into the skin within at a certain area. The targeted area will depend on the individual patient’s symptoms. Although this treatment is normally painless, patients may occasionally feel mild aches or pains once the needle reaches the target location. The needles will remain in place for up to 20 minutes. Patients may undergo weekly or biweekly treatment sessions to more effectively manage their pain.

Acupuncture is commonly used to treat the following conditions:

  • Pain following a surgical procedure
  • Peristent headaches
  • Back or neck pains, as well as various orthopedic issues and concerns.
  • Carpel Tunnel syndrome
  • Fibromyalgia
  • Gastrointestinal conditions
  • Asthma
  • Menstrual cramps

This treatment should always be performed by an experienced professional, since improperly performing acupuncture can cause serious health risks! Some side-effects associated with the procedure may include soreness, bleeding, or bruising at the site of the injection. However, these side-effects are usually very mild and will subside quickly.

Though acupuncture has many benefits for patients, it may not be right for everyone. Generally, it is not considered effective for patients who have a blood disorder, or for those who are taking a blood-thinning medication. However, it is considered quite safe and effective for most patients. This form of treatment has been especially effective for those who have not responded well to more traditional pain relief treatments.

Acupuncture Treatments in Langhorne

If you are dealing with a chronic pain condition and are considering an alternative treatment like acupuncture to manage your symptoms, contact us today! We can be reached at 215.741.4410. We look forward to seeing you!

 

 

 

 

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