Treat your pain and live a better life…

best-pain-doctor-nycWelcome to my blog about pain. Unfortunately, many people suffer from chronic pain. As a board certified physician in physical medicine and rehabilitation, my specialty is treating these people with both acute and chronic pain.

A majority of my practice is working with patients that are experiencing back and neck pain.

My goal with this blog is to help patients who are experiencing any type of back or neck pain to understand what is causing their pain and discuss options that are available to end their pain. I hope to be able to provide readers with a portal that they can can use to educate themselves and facilitate treatment.

My specialty is my Interventional Spine Skills including cervical and lumbar epidural steroid injections, facet injections, medial branch blocks, Radiofrequency ablation, sympathetic ganglion blocks, spinal cord stimulator trials, sacroiliac joint injection, piriformis muscle block and musculoskeletal joint injection. I also perform many other procedures to alleviate acute and chronic pain.

I hope you enjoy reading my blog as much as I enjoy writing it and observing people from all over the world reading it.

– Matthew Grimm, M.D.

OSTEOARTHRITIS

Osteoarthritis (OA) is the most common chronic joint condition and a type of arthritis. It is a long-lasting disease and a leading cause of disability. The point where two bones connect is a joint. A protective tissue that connects both the bones is cartilage. Cartilage is a tough but smooth, and slippery tissue that helps the bones to move. OA causes cartilage to break down, which makes both the bones rub together and leads to pain, stiffness and other symptoms. The bone starts to change, and the changes are usually slow, causing the condition to get worse with time.

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Mostly, OA is an old-age disease but it can occur in adults of all ages. Wear-and-tear arthritis, degenerative arthritis, and degenerative joint disease are a few names of OA. It occurs in the hands, knees, and hips more often. In some cases, OA reduces body functions and can lead to disability.  In some people, its severity can prevent people from performing daily chores.

Symptoms of Osteoarthritis:

The main symptom is pain. Sometimes, it comes in the form of stiffness in the joint. The pain gets worse when you move your joint. Symptoms of OA may vary with no obvious reason.

Sometimes, muscles that are surrounding the joints seem thin. The joint may give way as your muscles get weak and joint structure becomes less stable. OA may occur in any joint but the most commonly affected areas are hands, fingertips, hips, knees, neck and lower back. Some of the common symptoms of Osteoarthritis include:

  • Pain
  • Tenderness
  • Inflammation
  • Stiffness
  • Loss of flexibility
  • Bone spurs
  • Swelling

Reasons of Osteoarthritis:

Causes of OA are primary OA and secondary OA:

1.     Primary OA

Primary OA is the result of aging. It is not the effect of any disease or injury. With aging, as a function of the biological process, the watery substance inside cartilage increases and protein makeup degenerates. The cartilage starts degenerating, which the doctors observe through the formation of tiny crevasses and flaking. However, in advanced OA cartilage, the cushion in the center of the joints and bones is completely lost. When the joints wear and you use them repetitively, you can mechanically inflame and irritate the cartilage. This condition can lead to swelling and pain. By losing cartilage cushion, which is in the middle of the bones, you experience friction, which limits joint mobility and can cause severe pain. Inflammation can also cause new bone structures to outgrow surrounding the joints. OA can be genetic and can build up in various members of the family.

2.     Secondary OA

When the cause of osteoarthritis is another condition or disease, it can be secondary OA. Conditions leading secondary OA are as below:

  • Obesity
  • Surgery and trauma to the structure of the joint
  • Diabetes
  • Hemochromatosis
  • Gout
  • Congenital Abnormalities
  • Other hormonal diseases

arthritis-doctor-nyc-painYou can take the example of obesity for a proper elaboration of secondary OA. When a person is obese, their weight causes extreme pressure on the joints when they move, walk, run, etc. The constant and repetitive stress on the bones can lead to OA. After aging, the common cause of OA is obesity. Among weight lifters, the early development of osteoarthritis is common due to massive body weight. In soccer players and army military personnel, continuous trauma to the tissues of joints (bones, cartilage, and ligaments) leads to premature osteoarthritis. In long-distance runners, no osteoarthritis risk is found according to health issues.

Deposits of crystal in cartilage can cause OA and cartilage degeneration. Early cartilage wear and osteoarthritis can also be a result of Hormone disturbances, like diabetes and disorders of growth hormone.

Conclusion

Osteoarthritis is the most common arthritic disease and treatment requires a lot of time, as it is a type of chronic pain. The biggest mistake you can make when you have the symptoms stated above is ignoring the condition and not seeing a specialist. You can always learn more about OA or the treatment of this condition by getting in touch with us.

Give us a call at 646-862-5555 and book an appointment with our pain management specialist Dr. Mathew Grimm. Dr. Grimm is a seasoned specialist who can help you manage pain associated with arthritis.

HERNIATED DISC

doctor-for-herniated-disk-nyc-01There is a series of vertebrae or bones in your spinal column. The topmost column is a cervical spine, which consists of seven bones. The thoracic spine includes 12 bones. There are five in the lumbar spine, and in the last sacrum and coccyx, which are at the base. When you perform activities like lifting, walking, and twisting, these discs help in absorbing the shocks and create flexibility in the body.

Each of these discs has two parts: the inner portion, which is soft and gelatinous, and the outer ring, which is tough. When the inner portion protrudes through the outer ring due to injury or weakness, you call this condition herniated or slipped disc. This is a common condition and can lead to numbness, severe pain, and weakness in the limbs. The pain only occurs in situations where there is pressure on the nerve. When the case is severe, you need surgery to remove or repair this herniated disc.

Symptoms of Herniated Disc

The slipped disc may occur on any of the discs, from neck to lower back. The most common area is the lower back disc, where a slipped disc usually occurs. Your spinal column is a network of nerves and muscles. It can put extra pressure on your nerves and muscles. Symptoms of a herniated disc are as follows:

  • Pain in arms or legs
  • Pain and numbness in one side of your body
  • Severe pain while sitting and standing
  • Muscle weakness
  • Pain when walking

When you feel numbness and tingling, contact us immediately, as these sensations can affect your muscle movement.

Causes of Herniated disc

When the outer ring of a disc is weak, and the inner portion slips out, it causes a slipped disc. This may occur for various reasons. Some causes of the slipped disc are below:

  • Age factor
  • Lifting large and heavy objects
  • Weak muscles
  • Inactive lifestyle

Treatments of Herniated disc

The slipped disc may cure by medication, surgery, or therapy.

1.     Medication

i)              Nerve Pain Medications

These medications help in treating pain in the nerve. Medications include amitriptyline, pregabalin, gabapentin, and duloxetine, etc.

ii)             Narcotics

A doctor might prescribe you codeine or other narcotics if you still feel discomfort after taking OTC medications. Confusion, sedation, nausea, and constipation are some side effects of taking narcotics.

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iii)           Epidural Injections

Epidural space is the region surrounding your spinal cord. A doctor injects anti-inflammatory medications, anesthetics, and steroids in this area, which help to reduce swelling and pain.

iv)            Cortisone Injections

These injections help reduce pain and herniation, and doctors can inject them directly into the area.

v)             Muscle Relaxants

Relaxants can help reduce muscle spasms. You may feel sedation or dizziness after taking this medication as a side effect.

2.     Surgery

i)              Laminectomy

An opening in Lamina is made to remove pressure on nerve roots. Surgeons perform this surgery with the help of a small incision and microscope. The surgeon may remove Lamina, if necessary.

ii)             Artificial Disc Surgery

Artificial discs are made up of metal or biopolymers. The two types of disc replacements are; total disc replacement or disc nucleus replacement. The disc nucleus is a soft center present in the disc.

3.     Therapy

i)              Deep Tissue Massage

Deep tissue massage is the ideal option for the herniated disc to relieve muscle tensions and spasms. It helps in developing muscle motion in the area.

ii)             Hot and Cold Therapy

Both these therapies are good for a herniated disc. In heat therapy, a physical therapist uses heat to circulate blood flow to the target area. Blood delivers extra oxygen and nutrients and helps in healing. Blood also helps in removing waste byproduct.

Cold therapy reduces muscle spasm, inflammation, and pain. It slows blood circulation, and the therapist uses an ice pack or fluoromethane spray to cool tissues that are tender.

iii)           Transcutaneous Electrical Nerve Stimulation (TENS)

TENS is a machine that uses electric current and stimulates your body muscles. This is not a painful method. It releases endorphins that work as your body’s natural pain killer. TENS also helps in reducing spasms.

iv)            Traction

Traction reduces from your spine the effects of gravity. It works by gently pulling your bones apart, which results in reducing disc herniation. This can take place in the lumbar or cervical spine.

v)             Core Stability

Keeping your core muscle is also important to strengthen your back. It helps your back muscle to support your spine.

vi)            Flexibility

Exercises for flexibility help move the body easily. By learning stretching and flexibility can provide strength to your body. These techniques ward off stiffness.

vii)          Hydrotherapy

These therapies help in reducing stress. Active hydrotherapy helps in conditioning your body.

viii)        Muscle Strengthening

Strong muscles can provide support to the spine and to handle pain.

Conclusion

If you need a Pain Management Specialist, give a call at 646-862-5555 or book an appointment with our Pain Management Doctor, Dr. Mathew Grimm. Dr. Grimm can help you with advice, consultation, and the treatment of your condition. Call today.

CHRONIC PAIN MANAGEMENT

Pain is a natural phenomenon. You feel pain when you get a cut or if you crack your bone. Your nervous system tells you that something is wrong and after healing, you are pain-free. Pain signals travel through your spinal cord and reach your brain.

Chronic pain is different than the pain that we feel usually, which becomes less severe as the injury heals. Chronic pain keeps sending your brain signals after you have completely recovered from the wound. This can last up to weeks or years and can affect your strength, flexibility, and endurance, disturbing your daily tasks and activities. It also has an effect on your mental health.

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You may feel sharp or dull pain and it can cause an aching or burning sensation in the affected area. This pain may last for at least 12 weeks. It may come or go without any specific reason. This can affect any part of the body and you may feel pain differently in different areas.

Causes of Chronic Pain

Causes of chronic pain include pulled muscle or back sprain. It’s believed that chronic pain is due to nerve damage. The damage in the nerve makes it long-lasting and intense. Treating the injury doesn’t help in these cases.

Chronic Pain may also begin without any reason. Some of the main causes of chronic pain are:

1.     Endometriosis

Endometriosis is different from usual menstrual pain. This is chronic pain. It happens during your menstrual period repeatedly. Pain is so severe that sometimes OTC pain relievers or aspirin doesn’t work. The pain does not occur only around your uterus but spreads to your legs and back.

2.     Injuries or Surgeries

nyc-doctor-chronic-pain-management-02These injuries are the result of repetitive or prolonged motion like in sports, such as swimming, cycling, and running. When you overuse one body organ too much while playing a sport or working for a long time, you could end up with this type of pain. An injury while playing may cause you tennis elbow, runner’s knee, heel inflammation, stress fractures or shin splint. The most frequent cause of chronic pain is surgery. It significantly affects the quality of life and daily activities of sufferers.

3.     Inflammatory Bowel Disease

Chronic inflammation of your digestive tract is also called inflammatory bowel disease. There are two types of IBD: Ulcerative colitis and Crohn’s disease.

4.     Neuropathic Pain

Shooting or burning pain is sometimes called neuropathic pain or nerve damage. It can go easily but sometimes it is chronic. Nervous system malfunctioning and nerve damage may result in neuropathic pain. The main causes of this pain are chemotherapy, HIV AIDS, diabetes, alcoholism, etc. Symptoms of this condition are burning and shooting pain, and tingling and numbness.

5.     Interstitial cystitis

This condition is a chronic bladder health issue. The bladder area feels pain and pressure. Pain may also occur in other areas like lower abdomen, urethra, lower back, and pelvic perineal area. Women may feel pain in the vulva or the vagina and men may feel it in scrotum, penis or testicles. Pain may come and go or stay constant.

6.     Back Problems

Most people in their lives experience back pain. Chronic back pain is the pain that occurs after injury or surgery and can stay for weeks and months. Prolonged poor posture is the main and usual cause of this pain.

7.     Fibromyalgia

Fibromyalgia is a chronic disease and is medically unexplained. Other than chronic pain, symptoms of this condition are sleep disturbance, joint stiffness, and fatigue. Life is tough for chronic fibromyalgia patients.

8.     Chronic Fatigue Syndrome

Characterized by fatigue or tiredness, chronic fatigue syndrome doesn’t go away with rest and is hard to explain medically. You and your docto, have to treat causes for your fatigue because many other conditions also show similar symptoms.

9.     Infections

There are many types of chronic infections. These infections are slow to resolve. Some bacteria can create life-long infections in the host body. The different types of chronic infections are; fungi chronic infection, prion chronic infection, bacteria chronic infection, and viruses’ chronic infection depending on an antigen that is responsible for the infection.

Conclusion

Chronic pain may stay for a long time. If not taken seriously, it can last for years. For chronic pain management and consultation regarding conditions and symptoms, you can contact us. Give a call at (646) 862-5555 or book an appointment with our pain management doctor to get help with your condition.

Back Pain

Do you need a back pain doctor? Back pain is a very common symptom that almost everyone experiences in their lifetime. It was first very common in people who were aging but now even teenagers face this issue. Back pain can occur due to many reasons mainly revolving around our eating, physical behaviors and lifestyle habits. This type of pain is sometimes very excruciating and may cause many other problems that could affect some of your day-to-day tasks.

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If you think you’re suffering from back pain and want to learn more about its causes and treatments, stick around and read this article further on as it will give you a better insight about back pains.

What Causes Back Pains?

Back pains can occur due to a number of reasons which we have mentioned below:

·       Arthritis

Arthritis can also occur in our spine, which leads to a narrower space around the spinal cord. Osteoarthritis is one of the main types of arthritis that may cause our back to ache.

·       Cracked Disks

You may have a cracked or split disk that could be one of the reasons for your back pain. Disks act like supports our bones in our spine. Sometimes the disk tends to crack, which could be the reason for your back pain.

·       Scoliosis

Scoliosis is a medical condition in which your spine tends to curve to the side. This condition can also lead to back pain.

·       Muscle Pull

Sometimes some activities that require a lot of stamina such as rowing, heavy-lifting, and exercising may lead you to have back pain as you may pull or put too much strain on your muscles. People who are physically weak may mainly experience them. Muscle strains always lead to back pain.

·       Osteoporosis

Osteoporosis is another medical disease that makes your bones extremely weak and brittle. Hence, your spine may get affected and develop compression fractures, eventually causing back pain.

Symptoms of Back Pain

Mentioned below are the different symptoms you may experience that could be a sign of back pain:

  • Difficulty in lifting, walking or bending due to pain
  • Sudden shooting pain
  • Pain in leg
  • Extreme muscle pain and stiffness
  • The need for constant back support while sitting or lying down straight

How to Treat Your Back Pain?

Mentioned below are the different treatments for back pain:

Traditional Back Pain Treatments

Traditional back pain treatments include many home remedies that you can try out on your own before opting for any medication or medical procedure. There are different types of home treatments, such as:

§  Exercising

There are different exercises you can incorporate into your workout routine to strengthen your core muscles and improve your posture. These exercises also help to improve the flexibility in your bones that will help you to fight back pain.

§  Hot Water Baths

Hot water is the best for muscle pain. Take frequently hot water baths and mix some Epsom salt in the water. The salt helps your body to absorb minerals that lightens your muscles, relieving pain.

§  Ice & Heat Therapy

For heat therapy, keep a warm compress on your back. Heat always eradicates pain from bones and muscles, making this one of the best and easiest therapies.  For ice therapy, you can keep a few ice cubes inside a cloth and just keep it on your back. The ice helps to eradicate inflammation, which in turn reduces your back pain.

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Medications

§  Pain Killers

Pain killers such as ibuprofen and acetaminophen are the best, but avoid taking more than one.

§  NSAIDs

Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory medications are among the strongest pain medicines for back pain. You can take NSAIDs such as naproxen and ibuprofen.

§  Creams/Ointments

You can also use medicated ointments or creams that will help to relieve back pain. Most of these creams contain ibuprofen and lidocaine.

§  Other Medication

Muscle relaxants, steroid injections, antidepressants, and opioids.

Surgery

Your doctor may carry out a surgical procedure on your back if your pain keeps getting worse even after taking medication and home treatments. The surgery involves removing and replacing the disks, fusing them into one single bone.

Final Words

If you’re experiencing excessive back pain, don’t take it lightly. You can consult one of New York’s top pain management doctors, Dr. Mathew Grimm. He will guide you and formulate a treatment plan. So don’t waste time and contact us at our main website.

Arthritis

Arthritis is a very common disease that many of our elderly face. However, it has been growing and affecting many different ages due to their unhealthy lifestyles. Arthritis is a severe disease and can lead to many more complications that are life-threatening. It causes inflammation in your joints, which eventually leads to excessive pain and stiffness. These symptoms usually make it difficult for you to walk freely.

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If you want to learn more about arthritis and want to know if you are suffering from it, you should definitely go through this article as it will give you a clearer insight into Arthritis.

What Causes Arthritis?

There are a few reasons mentioned below that lead to Arthritis:

§  Diet and Lifestyle

Unhealthy eating habits and lifestyles are one of the main causes that lead to arthritis. The less movement your body attains and the more pressure it gains, the higher the chances there are of you developing arthritis. There are certain types of fatty foods and high-purine foods that also pave the way towards arthritis.

§  Genetic

You can also genetically inherit arthritis, especially if your family members experience osteoarthritis.

§  Immune System Dysfunction

Rheumatoid arthritis is a type of arthritis that causes the immune system to disrupt the lining of your joints. This leads to excessive inflammation and swelling in your joints and might result in a disability to walk or perform different tasks.

§  Additional Factors

Certain incidents and bad habits can also aggravate your arthritis, such as smoking, a bad injury, type of infection or too much activity that involves constant physical movement.

Symptoms of Arthritis

There are different types of symptoms you may experience during arthritis; however, these symptoms vary on the type of arthritis you have:

  • Excessive Swelling
  • Sudden pain in Knees
  • Redness
  • Stiffness- unable to walk or move your leg
  • Body pace slows down

Treatments for Arthritis

Mentioned below are the treatments for arthritis that will help you deal with it and may also lessen the pain and stiffness.

1.     Self Treatment

Before you opt for medications or surgery, you should always try and improve your sickness on your own by changing your lifestyle. For arthritis, you have to take care of:

·       Diet

There are certain foods that you should avoid to lessen the inflammation. This includes foods that contain a lot of sugar, red meat, high-dairy products, and tomatoes.

Three are some types of foods that will give you energy and help to reduce inflammation in your joints, such as beans, fish, fruits, vegetables, whole grains, nuts, and olive oil.

·       Physical Activity

Staying physically active helps you to keep your arthritis under control and also helps with your overall health. Participate in activities such as cycling, swimming, and walking. These activities help you to boost your energy and increase your heart rate allowing more blood to flow throughout your body.

·       Physical Therapy

There are certain amounts of exercises that help to loosen up your joints. The doctor will recommend most of these therapies for you to do it on your own, or sometimes a specialized body therapist helps you with it. Physical therapy also involves warm water therapy which you have to carry out in a swimming pool.

2.     Medications

There are many types of medications for arthritis, depending on the type of arthritis you have.

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o   Creams

There are some creams and ointments that help to relieve pain, such as creams that specifically include capsaicin and menthol.

o   Painkillers

You can take painkillers such as tramadol, acetaminophen, and narcotics. These painkillers help to relieve excessive pain; however, it does not reduce inflammation.

o   NSAIDs

Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDS) help with both pain and inflammation. These include ibuprofen and naproxen sodium. You can get some in gels or creams as well.

o   Biologics

These drugs help to target various protein molecules that get in the way of our immune system. You can avail biologics such as infliximab and etanercept.

3.     Surgery

If your arthritis worsens, your doctor may recommend surgery for your joints. This surgery will involve replacing your joint with an artificial one.

Conclusion

If you feel like you might suffer from arthritis or need help with the excessive symptoms. You can head on over to Dr. Grimm as he will give you the best help and advice for your arthritis. Visit our website and contact us today!

When to Seek a Specialist to Manage Your Chronic Pain

What is Chronic Pain?

There is a difference between acute (minor) pain and chronic pain. Acute pain tends to go away in a few weeks whereas chronic pain is intensely severe and may last for 6 to 12 months or more. Chronic pain is typically due to an injury, nerve damage or muscle spraining.

The science behind this shooting pain is that when you sense it, the nerves in your brain detect that there is a problem. Once detected, the brain then sends signals back to your body to heal the pain and solve the ‘problem’. If you are suffering from chronic pain, this movement of signals coming back and forth confuses your body. Your body does not respond to the signals and becomes even more sensitive to pain, hence the severity of chronic pain.

Signs & Symptoms

If you feel shooting pain in a specific area of your body and you can simply not bear it, you are suffering from chronic pain. That area will sting, burn, swell up and there will be soreness as well. This will result in sudden mood changes and lack of hunger and sleep. You may also feel drained and tired all the time.

Types of Specialists you can Consult for Therapy

Chiropractors are specialists that treat all kinds of chronic pains, especially back pain. They detect spinal manipulation and try to properly align the patient’s body. Chiropractic care certainly does help heal chronic pains.

Physical Rehabilitations specialists ensure better quality of life to patients and deal with injuries related to spinal cord, nerves, muscles or tendons.

Physical Therapists are specialists who guide you and give an exercise plan for pain relief. They will help you exercise to increase your mobility. They also do hot oil massages and place ice packs on the affected areas in order to ease your pain

Seeking a Specialist

Some of the most common types of chronic pains are; arthritis pain, back pain, post trauma pain or cancer pain. Whatever the reason of your pain, seek medical help if things go out of hand and the pain becomes uncontrollable.

Chronic pain tends to interfere with your mental state as well. It stays with you for long so causes you to be low and lose hope. Depression and chronic pain are inter related that’s why most doctors prescribe anti-depressant pills to help you get rid of your pain and depression. This is important because the combination of excessive stress and lack of sleep enhances your pain even more.

Moreover, you don’t know what your symptoms are leading towards. We can guide you better. Chronic pain can even mean cancer, so don’t take prolonged pain lightly. Your condition will be carefully checked, tests and scans will be conducted so that proper diagnosis can be done. Tailor made plans will be designed for your recovery.

It is very important for you to understand your problem so you don’t repeat the same mistakes. For example, if you are overweight and obesity is the main cause of your chronic knee pain, you should address this problem. Make yourself healthier so you can easily do physical activities to keep your body in shape and your weight in check.

Bottom-Line

Nerve block, acupuncture and electrical stimulation are just some examples of the medical procedures that exist to tackle this health problem. You can only find out about them if you visit a specialist and discuss the matter in detail.  Electrical stimulation procedure aims to reduce pain by sending mild electric shocks into your muscles, which is quite fascinating don’t you think? Thanks to research in medical sciences.

To conclude, it is vital to connect with a specialist for a better understanding of your problem and to look for suitable solutions as well. So, do not wait for your condition to worsen! Schedule your appointment with the best pain specialist in Manhattan.

What are Interventional Spine Skills?

What are Interventional Spine Skills? The back pain and spine-related problems are becoming more prevalent than ever. Back pain problems have accounted for almost 264 million lost days from work a year. Backache and spine conditions become serious when you began to feel radicular pain and symptoms. Radicular pain indicates problems such as compressed or fractured vertebra, spinal nerve root damage, and herniated vertebral risk.

To treat such problems, we have interventional spine procedures. Let us have a look at some interventional spine skills and how they relieve from pain.

Method of Treatments

Interventional spine skills include the following methods of treatment:

Medical Branch Block:

 Medical branch block is not only a pain management procedure but a method for primary diagnosis as well. It helps the doctor to find out if the facet joint is the source of the pain or not.

For this method, the doctor will inject a local anesthetic near the small medial nerves connected to a facet joint to relieve the pain. If the patient still feels pain and discomfort, the doctor will cancel out the facet joint as the source of the pain.

Epidural Steroid Injection:

It is perhaps the most common procedure for the interventional spine.  This procedure administers the most specific and targeted steroid injection to attain localized analgesia.

The steroid injections include a combination of anti-inflammatory and pain relief medicine. Your doctor will inject the epidural steroid in the nerve root, facet joint, and sacroiliac joints. Proper insertion of the injection requires the use of fluorescence or an X-ray. The procedure is effective for reducing inflammation and pain.

Kyphoplasty:  It is an effective procedure that treats vertebral compression fractures. Kyphoplasty can also restore the spinal height, which was reduced due to the vertebral collapse.

During Kyphoplasty, the surgeon will inject an image-guided needle on the fractured vertebra through your skin. The injection introduces a balloon, which inflates and restores some of or all of the spinal height. The balloon compresses the vertebra to its normal shape. Once the vertebra positions correctly, your surgeon will inject a medical bone-grade cement. It will provide strength to your vertebra and prevent further fractures.

Vertebroplasty: It is a simple out-patient procedure that involves injecting the medical bone-grade cement to stabilize the compression fractures of the spine.  The doctor gives injection after making a small incision in the skin. The cement hardens to provide pain relief and better stability to the vertebra.

What to do After an Interventional Spine Procedure?

You can go back to your normal routine after 24 hours of an interventional spine procedure. Take rest when you get back home. Although you are less likely to have your vertebra fractured or disc dislocated, but you must avoid lifting heavy objects. Avoid bending as it puts pressure on your spine. You must also not sit on the floor or any hard surfaces.

You may have heard that you can not take a bath, shower, or swim after an international spine procedure. However, it is a myth.  Taking a shower, bath, or a swim is not a risks after an interventional spine procedure. But, it is better for people who have diabetes, vascular disease, or low immunity to avoid swimming pools. There could be pathogens in the pool that can cause skin infection where they have received the injection.

We at Spine City New York provide a multi-disciplinary approach to relive your pain. We customize treatments for each of our patients depending upon their health, conditions, and cause of the pain. If you or a loved one is suffering from back pain and spine problems, call us at 646-862-5555 to book a consultation.

Sacroiliac Joint Injections

Our body comprises multiple joints; one of them is Sacroiliac (SI) joint. These joints connect the lower spine and pelvis. Our lower back has two sacroiliac joints present on both sides of the spine. When you walk or stand, these joints lift the weight of your upper body and shift the weight to your legs.

Does your job keep you on the move? Or if it requires you to stand for the whole day, you may have experienced pain in your lower back. Your butts may also hurt; this possibly happens because of sacroiliitis.

Sacroiliitis

 Where does it hurt?

You start feeling pain when inflammation of the SI joints takes place.  Initially, you may only feel pain the lower back or buttock region, but it may go down further. Sacroiliitis may cause your thighs, groin, hip, abdomen, or upper back to hurt.

What Causes SI Joint Pain?

You may feel a dull pain in the SI joints. However, the pain sharpens due to certain reasons. Let’s have a look at some of the causes of sacroiliitis.

  • If you are a fitness freak or a sports person, you are likely to begin your day with running or jogging. When the SI joints get regular pounding, you may experience pain.
  • Bumping into a motor vehicle, or falling may also damage the joints.
  • Taking long uneven strides may be troublesome.
  • When the ligaments holding the SI joints get damaged, you may experience pain with abnormal joint movement.
  • Inflammatory arthritis affecting the spine, called ankylosing spondylitis, may also damage the SI joint.
  • During pregnancy, a woman’s body releases hormones causing the joints to loosen up and stretch. The additional weight affects the SI joints and may lead to abnormal wear.

How to Relieve the Pain?

You may choose one of these ways to relieve sacroiliitis pain.

  • Physical therapy like massage, heat and cold treatments, or stretching
  • A chiropractor may adjust the joint movement
  • Damaging the nerve sending a pain signal to the SI joint
  • Sacroiliac Joint Injections

Sacroiliac Joint Injections

Studies have suggested that 10% to 27% chronic low back pain cases are a result of SI joint pain. Sacroiliac joint injections are more effective in reducing SI joint inflammation than other medications. The injection ensures months of comfort.

Pain management doctors use SI joint injection for both diagnosis and treatment of the pain. The doctor thoroughly examines the patient performing provocative tests. Three or more positive results of SI joint provocative tests confirm the joint to be the pain source. The doctor will numb the joint using anesthesia. If the pain instantly goes away, it confirms that the joint is the culprit.

To reduce the inflammation, the doctor then injects a shot of cortisone in the joint. The injection provides relief to the joint for a longer time. Sometimes the doctors also inject natural ingredients, like saline, in the joint to provide relief.

Sacroiliac Joint Injections are effective, but they can weaken joint bones. If you have sacroiliitis, only go for a few joint injections a year.

Bottom Line

If you want to live a pain-free healthy life, all your joints should work properly. If you are experiencing any spinal or musculoskeletal pain, don’t neglect it.

Contact us today and book an appointment with the best pain physicians at Spine New York City.

Pain Management

What are the best methods for pain management? Did you know that 80% of Americans experience back pain in their lives? No doubt, back pain can cause great discomfort and frustration, especially if you have been experiencing it for longer. Nevertheless, most backaches are acute; it lasts for a few days to weeks.

Backaches may interfere with your work, regular activities, and sleep, inhibiting you from living a quality life. While considering that, it is essential for you to undergo pain management, so that it relieves the distressing backache, enabling you to live your life to the fullest.

What Causes Back Pain?

Accident, aging, and strenuous activity can lead to spinal pain. While these are the major causes, here are some other common sources of spinal pain:

  • Overstretching of ligaments
  • Compression in intervertebral discs
  • Tearing of muscles or tendons
  • Discs degeneration due to aging
  • Compression or inflammation in spinal nerve route
  • Discs become swelled due to compression
  • Dislocation of the lower spine
  • Wear and tear in bones, discs, and joints
  • Inflammation of the vertebrae
  • Curvature of backbone
  • Narrowing of the vertebral column

What are the Treatment Options for Pain Relief?

When it comes to back pain, there are several treatment options that your pain doctor will recommend, depending on your condition. However, most medical professionals use multiple treatments that include new methods.

Physical Exercises

Stretches can help alleviate your back pain by strengthening your muscles that support your spine. Performing specific exercises for backache will help improve your backbone posture while promoting flexibility and mobility.

Complementary Approaches

Spinal mobilization and manipulation may work in improving your back pain. Other than this, acupuncture, massage, and yoga have shown effective results for spinal ache.

Medications

Your pain doctor may give you muscle-relaxing analgesics such as aspirins and acetaminophen to relieve your backache. Besides, you need to take anti-inflammatory non-steroidal drugs, such as ibuprofen to lessen the pain.

Radiofrequency Ablation

Your pain doctor may administer the pain relief medicine through radio waves. A medical professional inserts a needle into the affected nerve and zaps it with electric current with radio waves, which create short-circuits to relief pain.

Behavior Adaption

By learning the ways to keep your body posture proper while performing daily activities can help with back pain. Not to mention, pulling, pushing, and weight lifting can help mitigate your pain. Besides, proper diet, regular sleep, relaxation, and exercises can also lessen your spinal ache.

Spinal Injections

In severe cases, a pain doctor administers the steroidal anti-inflammatory injection in your spine. However, it provides the patient with short-term relief. Therefore, you may need multiple injections from time to time to reduce the pain.

Surgery

If none of the above mentioned treatments could help improve your condition while reducing your pain, then you probably have to undergo surgery. Your pain doctor will recommend it, particularly when other conservative methods have failed.

Why Do You Need to See the Pain Doctor?

If you have been experiencing chronic back pain that could not get better with at-home techniques, then you must consider seeing the pain doctor urgently. Note that, neglecting a long-term pain can lead you to further complexities.

The treatment for back pain needs to be administered properly. Matthew Grimm, top Manhattan Pain Doctor, is a specialized doctor that provides the patients with safe and effective treatments for backaches and musculoskeletal pain.

Pain in Men vs. Women

In recent years there has been much research regarding differences experiencing pain in men vs. women. The expansive literature in this area signifies that men and women have different responses to pain. Higher pain sensitivity and risk for clinical pain is more common in women. Although there is no specific etiological basis that underlies the sex difference in pain. However, certain biological and psychosocial factors may contribute to different responses to pain.

Possible Factors for Sex Difference Regarding Pain

Studies also suggest that men and women differ in responsiveness to pharmacological and non-pharmacological pain intervention. The genes have an important role in pain sensitivity. Structural changes in genotype among men and women could be a possible factor. Endogenous opioid-functioning could be another factor. It regulates the receptors in your body that are responsible for pain. It is important to realize here that response to pain, however, can be a subjective matter as well.

Psychosocial factors such as early-life exposure to stress and suffering pain might elucidate the sex difference in pain. Moreover, the gender-stereotyping notion has also contributed to the difference in expressing and responding to pain. Much of this stereotyping is quite common in different countries and cultures of the world.

One must not ignore factors like behavioral responses to children when they complain about pain and their after effects on a person’s life. A child might stop complaining about pain altogether if a common response to his/her complain is scolding and shouting. A similar response to pain in children can be a result of parents telling them to face the pain toughly.

Sex hormones can also have an impact on pain. Testosterone is believed to have an analgesic effect and that’s why men’s response to certain pains is calmer than women’s. As a result of hormonal differences, women experience more chronic pain than men when they have back problems. Decreased levels of progesterone and estrogen after menopause can make a woman’s body vulnerable to inflammation and pain.

Regardless of the medical condition, women seem to report feeling more pain than men. Studies have suggested the same elevated sensitivity to pain in women when it comes to serious chronic illnesses like arthritis, diabetes, etc.

The difference in Backache and Spine Related Problems

Epidemiological stats tell us that women have complained more about acute and chronic pain.  Several factors make women a little more susceptible to backache and vertebral problems than men.

Pregnancy and childbirth increase the chances of a herniated disk. Lifting a heavy child for a long time can further elevate the risk of backache and vertebral disk problems.

Calcium deficiencies and bone-related diseases are twice as common as in men.  About one in every three women has a calcium deficiency. Change in diet and lifestyle has more contributed to calcium deficiencies resulting in weaker bones in women these days.

With weaker bones, risks of bone disparities, and pain becomes high. Osteomyelitis, osteoarthritis, and osteoporosis have become women-associated diseases. Women also get more knee replacement surgeries than men.

FINAL THOUGHTS

Backache problems and spinal conditions are serious for both men and women. If you have backache or pain in arms and legs that is causing you discomfort, then you must not ignore.  

Contact Dr. Matthew Grimm at 646-862-5555 to book a consultation. Spine New York City specializes in general pain and spinal conditions.