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.

Pain Management: Thoracic Epidural

A thoracic epidural is an injection that helps curb excessive pain in the thoracic region. It refers to the upper to middle areas of the back. This area is prone to excessive pain due to old age or a major fracture. The injection goes through the epidural space, which is the area surrounding your spinal cord. If you feel like you or someone around you is suffering from this pain, and you want to learn more about the thoracic epidural, you have come to the right place. Spare a few minutes and continue to read further.

Thoracic Epidural
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What is Thoracic Epidural

As mentioned earlier, thoracic Epidural is an injection that helps relieve pain in your thoracic region. The doctor inserts the injection into the area around your spinal cord. Not to mention, the spinal cord is one of the most sensitive parts of the body and includes a bundle of nerves running from your brain to the lower back. The epidural space acts as a barrier around your spinal cord.

When the nerves in your spinal cord get irritated or inflamed, that’s when you feel uncomfortable and go through severe back pain. This could be due to any back injury as the interverbal disc may press into the spaces of the spinal cord, which in turn causes you unbearable back pain.

Thoracic Epidural Procedure

The thoracic epidural injection involves a simple procedure that your doctor will brief you about before you go for it. When you go in for the injection, the first thing you will have to do is lie on the side or your stomach on an x-ray table. The nurse or doctor may give you medicine to help you feel relaxed or sleepy during the procedure if needed.

Next, the doctor will numb the targeted spot or injection site and position the needle properly. Your health care provider will finally inject the required medicine into the injection and insert it into the epidural space. The injection is quite painful, and you may feel a bit uncomfortable, but you should let your doctor know if the pain is unbearable.

Pain Management: Thoracic Epidural
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Post Thoracic Epidural

After you receive the thoracic epidural injection, you will have to wait for at least an hour before you can go home. Your doctor or healthcare workers will monitor you during this time and check if your body has acted or reacted to the injection.

After the procedure, your pain management doctor will ask you to rest for the whole day at home and avoid all activities like cooking, going out, driving, etc. Many people feel relaxed after the injection as the pain goes away. However, some people may still feel pain or even more than the usual pain. The injection may last for a few days or months, but you can take them monthly.

Once you get home, you will feel a lot of body numbness, which is very common, as well as redness in the injection area. In case of any severe side effects, you must consult your doctor immediately. The doctor might ask you to come for a follow-up and might have to run a few blood tests to see any improvements or if any other issues you might be facing post-procedure.

Risks Associated with Thoracic Epidural Injection

The thoracic epidural injection is quite safe; however, there are a few risks involved in it. Your healthcare professional will discuss the associated risks with you before giving you the injection. The risks involved differ from person to person. Some people might not experience any side-effects, while some might feel more pain. Here are a few of the common risks:

  • Headaches
  • A slight increase in pain
  • Infection
  • Nerve Stiffness
  • Minor bleeding
  • Allergic reaction due to rash

How to Prepare Yourself for a Thoracic Epidural Injection

You need to take care of a few things before getting your shot. First, you must consult your doctor and let them know if you have any allergies, especially with any medicines. You must provide your healthcare worker with all the necessary CT scans or test results you have undergone before for diagnosis and treatment of your pain.

If you have any symptoms of flu or fever for a week, you must inform your doctor before getting the injection. Additionally, you may have to fast for a few hours before the procedure and also not take any medication. Your doctor will discuss all the required details with you.

Consult Dr. Matthew Grimm, Top NYC Pain Doctor

If you feel like you may require a Thoracic Epidural injection or have been struggling with excessive back pain, you must visit the best pain management doctor in New York. Get in touch with Dr. Matthew Grimm, MD, as he has the experience to treat all types of pain and perform different procedures.

Visit our website or call us at 646-862-5555 to book your in person or telemedicine appointment with our pain management doctor.

Different Types of Pain

This article will help you understand different types of pain and their reasons. If you experience any symptoms, consult your pain management doctor.

Types of Pain
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Your body may experience different types of pain due to any underlying health problem or without any cause. Either way, they are painful and disturb your daily life. If you face any type of pain mentioned below, you need to consult your doctor as early as possible to get treatment before it gets worse.

Types of Pain

Acute Pain

This is one of the most common types of pain, which is a short term pain. In this case, you will feel a sudden pain due to a specific cause, typically tissue injury. Mostly, it lasts for six months and completely goes when you get it treated.

You may also feel sharp or intense pain when it is improving. The common causes of acute pain can be:

  • broken bones
  • dental work
  • surgery
  • cuts
  • labor and childbirth
  • burns

Chronic Pain

Chronic pain is the one that lasts for more than six months, even when your injury gets healed. Moreover, you may feel this pain for years; the intensity can range from mild to severe. According to a study, chronic pain is common in adults in the United States.

Past damages or injuries can lead to chronic pains. However, sometimes it can happen without any cause. Without treatment, chronic pain can greatly affect your quality of life. As a result, patients with chronic pain start to suffer from depression and anxiety.

Symptoms that can accompany this pain include:

  • Tense muscles
  • Limited mobility
  • Lack of energy

Following are some common examples of this type of pain:

  • Frequent headaches
  • Fibromyalgia pain
  • Low back pain
  • Nerve damage pain
  • Arthritis pain

Nociceptive Pain

You may have heard about the nociceptive pain. It occurs because of the stimulation of nociceptors sensory receptors due to tissue injury. You have these pain receptors throughout your body, especially in your internal organs and skin.

Different Types of Pain
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When they detect signals from the damaged tissue or any other harm, such as a cut, they send electrical signals to the brain, making you feel the pain. Nociceptive pain usually occurs when you suffer from any type of injury or inflammation. This pain can be either chronic or acute. Doctors can further classify it as somatic or visceral.

Visceral

Visceral pain is not a common pain as it occurs from damages or injuries to your internal organs. Patients can feel it in the trunk of their bodies, including the abdomen, chest, and pelvis. Generally, it is hard to identify the location of this pain.

Visceral pain can also feel like:

  • Pressure
  • Squeezing
  • Aching
  • Cramping

You can also feel other symptoms such as vomiting, nausea, as well as various changes in body heart rate, blood pressure, and temperature. Some of the examples of diseases or disorders that can cause visceral pain include:

  • Gallstones
  • Irritable bowel syndrome
  • Appendicitis

Somatic

It occurs when pain receptors in your tissue start to stimulate instead of stimulation in your internal organ. This includes muscles, skin, connective tissues, joints, and bones. Generally, it is easy to identify the location of the pain.

You may feel a continuous gnawing pain or aching sensation. It can also be deep or superficial than visceral pain. For instance, a tear in a tendon can lead to deep somatic pain, and a canker sore on the inner cheek can make you suffer from superficial somatic pain.

Examples of this pain include:

  • Bone fractures
  • Connective tissue diseases
  • Strained muscles
  • Skin cuts, burns, and scrapes
  • Cancer that affects the skin or bones
  • Joint pain, such as arthritis pain

Neuropathic Pain

Neuropathic pain occurs because of the damages or dysfunction of your nervous system. The damaged or dysfunctional nerves send pain signals. You may feel pain in the response of things which were not painful before, such as clothing or cold air stringing on your skin.

Neuropathic pain can feel like:

  • Burning
  • Numbness
  • Electric shocks
  • Freezing
  • Tingling
  • Stabbing
  • Shooting

Diabetes is one of the most common reasons for neuropathic pain. Other causes can be nerve dysfunction. Injuries or factors that lead to neuropathic pain also include:

  • Accidents
  • High level of alcohol consumption
  • Infections
  • Facial nerves problems, including Bell’s palsy
  • Shingles
  • Spinal nerve compression or inflammation
  • HIV
  • Carpal tunnel syndrome
  • Radiation
  • Chemotherapy drugs
  • Central nervous system diseases or disorders, such as Parkinson’s disease or multiple sclerosis

Consult the Spine Center of NYC for Pain Management

All these types of pain can make you suffer for longer periods. They can get worse if you don’t consult a pain management doctor to get treatment. Call Matthew Grimm, MD, the best pain management specialist in NYC.

Visit our website or call us on 646-862-5555 to book an appointment with our pain management doctor. We have qualified and experienced doctors who help you eliminate your pain at its source.

Chronic Back Pain

Are you suffering from chronic back pain and do not know what to do? In current times, almost every other person you meet is suffering from chronic back pain. The point to notice in this case is that these cases are starting to increase now. Back in the days, you would only find the elderly facing these issues.

A major reason for the increase in the cases is the exponential growth in working-class people. Most offices around the world do not provide their employees with ergonomically designed workplaces, which messes with their spinal cord, and you start experiencing chronic back pain. In other cases, you may experience a chemical reaction in your backbone, which is causing the pain or some other reason.

Chronic Back Pain
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Improve your Posture

Improving your posture helps a lot. It does not only make you look good, but it helps you with chronic pain as well. Whenever you are sitting or standing, keep your posture in mind. The moment you notice your posture is hunched or it is not right in any way, you can correct it.

If you recently started experiencing chronic pains, then it is high time that you start being mindful of your posture. The best way to improve your posture is by sitting on a stool. Sure, it will be difficult at first. Nonetheless, you become used to it with time.

Physical Therapy

Most people start experiencing chronic back pain because they do not provide their bodies with adequate motion. Therefore, many experts say that exercising is the key to treating chronic back pain. However, when you plan to get into exercising, make sure you take advice from your physician or physical therapist. Since you have compromised muscles already, you cannot take more risks with your wellbeing. They will specially design a routine for you to follow. Make sure you keep up with it in your routine life.

A therapy routine might include things like core strengthening exercises, aerobics, stretching, flexibility exercises, and testing your pain limits

Meditation

While you may not believe it, meditation can help with various sorts of pain, especially chronic back pain.

While meditating, your body releases stress and gains positive energy that can address various issues. Nevertheless, many people start experiencing physical pains only because they have been suffering from psychological problems like frustration, depression, psychological pressure, and much more. Meditating on a daily basis can help you balance your mood and retain energy.

You can resort to any meditation method from one-minute meditation to tai chi.

Change in Lifestyle

Sometimes, our bodies face health issues as a result of poor lifestyle choices. An unhealthy lifestyle can affect our wellbeing to a great extent. Most people you meet might be the target of a bad lifestyle. Therefore, when you feel like your choices are part of the problem, it’s time to make a few changes.

These changes might involve eating the right food, taking more trips while taking groceries to the house, taking breaks while working, and whatnot. However, if you have a habit of taking intoxicants or smoking cigarettes, try quitting them instantly. Further consumption of bad food, intoxicants, and cigarette smoke will worsen your back pain even more.

Diet

Your diet plays an important role in determining your health. Therefore, consuming foods that do not support a healthy living will ruin your health. Nevertheless, some foods might have nutrients that affect your entire health.

Best Pain Doctor in New York City

If no mentioned treatments work for you, then I suggest you take help from a board-certified physician. If you live in New York City, I have a great recommendation for you. Dr. Matthew Grimm is a board-certified physician and top NYC expert in chronic pain management.

He does not only treat chronic back pain but other chronic pain as well. He is a pain management specialist, and he will educate you about how you can manage your pain efficiently. He will explain different ways as to how you can improve your quality of life.

There are often multiple solutions to manage pain. You can choose from any treatments that suit your taste. Doctor Grimm will educate you on all treatments and how they work.

Treatment Chronic Back Pain NYC
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Final Feedback

Chronic back pain is a common problem that can heavily affect your normal lifestyle. It affects the way you sit, stand, and lay down. Needless to say, the quality of your life decreases a lot once you start experiencing them.

The sooner you contact a doctor to treat your issue, the better. Contact top NYC pain management specialist Dr. Matthew Grimm to treat your chronic pain.

Matthew Grimm, M.D.
160 E 56th St
11th Floor
New York, NY 10022

646-862-5555

Caudal Injections for Pain Management

Caudal injections are best for curing lower back pain and leg pain, usually caused by sciatica, spinal stenosis, spondylosis, and other back-related issues. The doctor administers this injection into your lower back, into the space between the membrane. This membrane consists of the spinal fluid and the strongest ligament between your vertebrae. If you‘re suffering from unbearable back or leg pain, your doctor will most likely prescribe you this injection. If you want to learn more about caudal injection and its effectiveness, you must read further.

Caudal Injections for Pain Management
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What is a Caudal Injection?

A caudal injection is a type of steroid injection that gets administered in the lowest area of your epidural space. This injection helps reduce lower back pain as well as leg pain caused by major back problems like sciatica, bone spurs, herniated discs, stenosis, and other related problems. The pain occurs when the nerve roots, running from your spinal cord to your back and legs, get inflamed, which could be due to a damaged disc or another condition. The only way to reduce this terrible pain is by getting a caudal injection as it helps saturate the inflammation.

The Caudal Injection Process

The process of administering a caudal injection is pretty simple, but it is painful to a certain extent. A pain management specialist injects the caudal shot in the affected area to relieve the patient of the pain and discomfort. It takes around 15 minutes, depending on the expertise of the doctor. For the injection, you will have to lie straight on an x-ray table on your abdomen. Next, the doctor will give you some intravenous medication and numb the skin on your lower back with a local anesthetic.

After this, the doctor will administer a thin needle into your lower back, above your tail bone. Next, the specialist will inject the dye and a mixture of anesthetic or steroids for pain relief. As soon as you get the injection, the medicines will then spread into the caudal and epidural spaces, which will give you some relief from the pain.

Caudal Injections
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Effectiveness of Caudal Injection

Caudal injections are quite effective, especially when it comes to getting rid of severe back pain. Many people wonder how long and effective the injection is. It starts to work within 30 minutes after you get the dose. However, you might start to experience some pain again as the local anesthetic starts to wear off after a few hours.

You will begin to experience longer-term relief in two to three days when the steroid starts working. The time limit differs from person to person. For some people, the relief lasts longer than usual. If the injection helps relieve your pain, you can get the shots periodically to stay away from pain.

Potential benefits of caudal injections:

  • Instant back or leg pain relief
  • Fast recovery
  • Fewer risks involved
  • Can go home within 30mins after the injections

Potential Risks Involved

There are a few risks involved when you get the caudal injections. These risks are usually explained to you by your doctor before going in for the procedure. However, they do not last long in most cases, and your pain management doctor will help you deal with these side-effects:

  • Bleeding
  • Chance of the back area getting infected (rarely)
  • Numbness
  • May experience excessive pain
  • Headaches
  • Insomnia
  • Drowsiness
  • Nerve problems
  • Stroke
  • Spinal Cord Injury

How to Prepare For Your Caudal Injection

Whenever you plan on getting a caudal injection, you must prepare yourself mentally and physically and keep all the required information ready. There are a few things you can do to stay fully prepared for your injection.

First, when you visit your doctor, he/she will take your medical history. So keep a list of all the medications you are taking and X-ray reports of your CT scan, MRI, and any other tests you have undergone for the diagnosis and treatment of your pain.

It is best to avoid taking any medications before the process, especially if the injection is for diagnosis. This way, you can tell if the injection has worked or not. You may have to fast a few hours before your injection, but you must confirm this with your doctor.

When going for your injection, make sure to wear the comfiest clothes in your closet. Don’t wear anything tight that would stick to your body, especially the area where you’re getting the injection on.

If you feel sick or are suffering from mild flu or fever the day before your procedure, you must inform your doctor as they will guide you as to whether you should get the injection the same day or after you feel better.

Conclusion

If you’re struggling with severe back pain and feel like you may need a caudal injection to relieve the symptoms,  consult Dr. Matthew Grimm. He is one of the best pain management doctors in NYC and knows how to treat all types of pain. It is best not to delay the treatment as it may lead to other issues.

Visit our website or call us at 646-862-5555 to book an in person or telemedicine appointment today!

NYC Doctor For Sciatica

Doctor for Sciatica 2020-2021There are many types of back pains. Some pains come up suddenly while others start slowly and get severe with time. Common medicine can be helpful to treat some types of pains, but others require powerful drugs and surgeries to get back to normal life. At times, it is hard to find the source of the pain, but you can easily identify sciatica.

Sciatica is the pain caused by the irritation of the sciatic nerve. When this nerve irritates, it can cause pain, ranging from light to severe. It is usually caused by a dense nerve. This nerve is in the lower spine and runs from your hips to your feet. The pain might be acute or chronic. It hurts you in your bottom, feet, toes and the back of your legs. You may also feel weakness, numbness, and tingling, and the pain may cause stabbing, burning and shooting reactions. A slip of the herniated disk is the main reason for this pain. It is not a condition, but a symptom.

How Sciatica Works

The slip of the herniated disk in your lumbar (lower) spine is the main reason behind Sciatica. The flat, flexible, round disks of the connective tissue cushion and separate your vertebrae. Either due to injury or years of usage, this disk wears down. As a result, its soft center begins to push out from the hard outer ring.

When a disk herniates, pressure on the sciatic nerves builds, causing severe pain. This nerve is the longest in your body, which starts from lower back and splits into a network to run through your hips, buttocks, legs, and feet. Spinal stenosis can also put pressure on these nerves.

Causes of Sciatica:

Other causes of Sciatica may include:

1.     Spondylolisthesis

Affecting your lower vertebrae, Spondylolisthesis is a spinal condition. This condition is really painful. To cure this disease, doctors may use therapeutic and surgical methods. To avoid this condition, you should incorporate proper exercise techniques.

Symptoms:

Some of the common symptoms include:

  • Lower back tenderness
  • Thigh pain
  • Lower back pain
  • Back and leg stiffness
  • Tight hamstring and buttock muscles

2.     Lumbar Spinal Stenosis

Doctor for Sciatica New YorkThe lumbar spine is a group of five vertebrae in the lower part of the spine in between the ribs and the pelvis. Lumbar Spinal Stenosis occurs when the spinal cord narrows, compressing the nerves traveling through the lower back into the legs. Commonly, this may affect younger patients due to the development process but may affect people who are 60 and older as a degenerative condition.

The spinal canal usually narrows slowly, over many years or decades. Due to aging, the disk becomes less spongy and results in the loss of disk height, and hardened disk in the spinal canal turns bulgy. Ligaments may become thick and turn into bone spurs. The narrowing of the central canal is due to these conditions. Inflammation and compression of the nerve may cause symptoms.

Symptoms may include:

  • Pain, numbness or weakness in the legs, calves or buttocks
  • Pain radiating into one or both legs and thighs
  • Loss of normal bladder or bowel function (happens less often)
  • Improvement in the condition when lying down or sitting
  • Calves becoming stiff while walking, compelling to take quick breaks

3.     Degenerative Disk Disease

This condition occurs when one or more disks between vertebrae break down or change, leading to pain. This is an age-related disease. Spinal disks work as shock absorbers between vertebrae or bones of your spine and you can bend or twist with the help of these disks as they keep your back flexible. It shows signs of wear and tears when you grow old.

Symptoms:

Common signs of degenerative disk disease may include:

  • It may occur in lower back, buttocks and upper thighs
  • It may come and go
  • It may be nagging or severe
  • It can last for a few days or maybe months
  • Your pain may be worse when you bend, lift or twist and you feel better when you change positions and lie down

Call Dr. Matthew Grimm to Treat Your Sciatica

Degenerative Arthritis, lumbar disk disease, trauma or injury to the lumbar spine are some of the causes of Sciatica. Consulting a doctor and getting proper treatment may give relief quickly. If you need a Pain Management Specialist, call to book an appointment with our Pain Management Doctor. Dr. Mathew Grimm is an expert in treating all kinds of pain.

Matthew Grimm, M.D.
160 E 56th St
11th Floor
New York, NY 10022
646-862-5555

Sciatic Nerve Pain

The irritation arising in the sciatic nerve causes sciatic nerve pain in the lower region. You may feel pain from the lower back (lumbar area) to the back thigh. This nerve is the largest in your body. It starts from nerve roots in the lumbar area from the spinal cord (lower back) and heads up to lower limb, passing through the buttock area. Sciatic nerve pain is sometimes referred to as Radiculopathy.

Sciatic nerve pain

Common Causes of Sciatic Nerve Pain:

Sciatica is the result of disc herniation in the lumbar area. Symptoms may also occur when inflammation and irritation are caused to the sciatic nerve. An abnormal vertebral disc resulting in irritation is also called Radiculopathy. Other causes of sciatic nerve pain are irritation of nerve due to adjacent bone, muscle, tumor, infections around or in the lumbar spine, internal bleeding, injury, etc. Women are prone to sciatic pain when they are pregnant.

Diagnosis for Sciatic Nerve Pain:

Doctors will check your reflexes and muscle strength during physical exams. They might ask you to walk on your toes or heels, to lift your leg one at a time and all those activities that can increase pain for examining the cause thoroughly.

Tests for Sciatic Nerve Pain:

After that, one of our doctors will conduct some tests to check the condition of your pain. With these tests, we will be able to know if there are any abnormalities. These tests will also locate the area of pain. In some conditions of herniated disks or bone spurs, you might not feel symptoms but tests will reveal your condition. We will only suggest those tests if your pain is severe or you are not recovering from the pain from weeks.

1.     X-ray

Maybe your bone is overgrowing and causing you pain. An X-ray of your spine may reveal that. When the bone overgrows or spurs, it might press up the nerve, causing you pain and numbness.

2.     MRI

With MRI, doctors produce cross-section images of your spine with the use of powerful magnets and radio waves. MRI can produce proper images of a herniated disk, soft tissues, and bones. You have to lie down on a table that moves inside the MRI machine.

3.     CT Scan

Doctors inject a contrast dye inside your spinal canal when they use a CT scan to create an image of the spine. This procedure is called myelogram. This dye circulates around your spinal cord and nerves and highlights in white when doctors scan.

4.     Electromyography (EMG)

EMG measures the electrical impulses which your nerve and muscle responses produce. With this test, nerve compression due to narrowing of your spinal canal or slipped disk can be confirmed.

Treatment of Sciatic Nerve Pain

When you are suffering from sciatic nerve pain, your doctor can suggest the following types of treatments:

1.     Medications

These are the types of medications your doctor may provide when you are having sciatic nerve pain:

  • Anti-Inflammatory medications
  • Narcotics
  • Muscle Relaxants
  • Anti-seizure medications
  • Tricycle anti-depressants

2.     Physical Therapy

Doctors may also suggest therapies, which can help you by improving your:

  • Flexibility
  • Core stability for back support
  • Posture
  • Muscle strength

Sciatic nerve pain - spinal diagram nerves3.     Steroid Injections

When the condition is worse and you are not recovering with medications and therapies, doctors then recommend corticosteroid injections. Doctors give these injections directly into the area that involves nerve root. These injections help in reducing pain and suppressing inflammation. The effects of these injections can wear off in a few months. Injecting too frequently can cause side effects.

4.     Surgery

When the compression of nerve leads to bowel or bladder loss, weakness, or when your pain is getting severe and not improving with other treatments, the doctor recommends surgeries. Surgeons remove the overgrown bone or bone spur or remove a herniated disk that is pressing the nerve.

5.     Other Treatments

Other treatments like cold and hot packs on the area, stretching and taking over-the-counter medications may also help in the treatment of the sciatic nerve pain.

Consult Dr. Matthew Grimm to Treat Your Sciatic Nerve Pain

Sciatic nerve pain may affect daily activities and may increase in severity over time. An early visit to the doctor may result in a better treatment. If you need a Pain Management Specialist, give us a call at 646-862-5555 or book an appointment with our Pain Management Doctor

Matthew Grimm, M.D.
160 E 56th St
11th Floor
New York, NY 10022
646-862-5555

All About Rheumatoid Arthritis

Rheumatoid Arthritis is an autoimmune disease that causes joint pain and damage throughout your body. RA affects joints on both sides. It means that if RA affects one of your arms or legs, you will feel the same effects on the other side as well. This is one way of distinguishing RA from other conditions.

Rheumatoid Arthritis Doctor NYC

An early treatment of Rheumatoid Arthritis works best and can show long-term results. RA is a progressive, long-term, and disabling disease. This disease affects legs feet and hands first, but it can occur in any joint of the body. When your immune system does not work properly, it results in RA. Treatments of RA can stop swelling and pain in the joints and also prevent joint damage.

The Rheumatoid Arthritis Support Network provides an estimate that up to 1 percent of the world’s population and over 1.3 million people in America suffer from RA. It is the most disabling type of arthritis. RA is a chronic disease and it causes joint stiffness, swelling, pain and decreased movement of the joints. It can also affect your eyes, lungs, and skin, but most commonly, it affects small joints in the hands. The joint stiffness in the morning is hurtful and can stay for two hours or even the whole day. Stiffness is not a common condition. If you feel stiffness in the morning, you might have this condition. You can get rid of the stiffness with the movement of the joints.

Symptoms:

Signs and symptoms of RA may also include:

  • Low appetite and weight loss
  • Fevers and weakness
  • Energy loss and unsteadiness in walking
  • Dry mouth and eyes
  • Rheumatoid nodules (firm lumps) grow beneath the skin in places such as the elbow and hands
  • Function and mobility loss

Causes

Causes of immune system malfunction are unknown. Some people have genetic factors that cause RA. There is a theory that bacteria or a virus causes this condition to people who have this genetic feature. In RA, antibodies, which are part of the immune system, attack the synovium, causing pain and inflammation. Synovium is the smooth lining of a joint. Inflammation causes thickness to the synovium. If not taken seriously, it can invade and destroy cartilage. RA also causes tendons and ligaments that hold the joint together to become weak and stretchy. The joint loses its shape, which can cause severe damage.

Types of Rheumatoid Arthritis

Types of Rheumatoid ArthritisRA is of different types. If you know the type you have, it will be helpful in treatments. You can find details about the different types of Rheumatoid Arthritis:

1.     Seropositive RA

This is the most common type of RA. In this condition, your blood has antibodies that attack your own body. These antibodies inflame your joints. These antibodies are anti-cyclic citrullinated peptides, or anti-citrullinated protein antibodies (ACPAs). To see if you have anti-CCPs in your body, the doctor does blood tests. Having these antibodies does not mean you have RA. The doctor will confirm once he checks the symptoms.

Symptoms of Seropositive RA:

Seropositive symptoms include:

  • Stiffness of joints
  • Pain in joints
  • Inflammation of the body other than joints
  • Fatigue
  • Body stiffness in the morning for about 30 minutes or more

2.     Seronegative RA

In this condition, you either may not have any anti-CCPs in your blood or you don’t have much of them. If your RF blood test is negative, but you still have RA, you may have seronegative RA. Once you develop antibodies, your diagnosis will change to seropositive RA. Symptoms of seronegative RA and seropositive RA are the same.

3.     Juvenile idiopathic arthritis (JIA)

This type of RA affects children aged 17 years and younger. JIA is most common in girls. In some situations, it is difficult to control.

Symptoms of Juvenile idiopathic arthritis

Juvenile idiopathic arthritis symptoms are as follows:

  • Joints get warm
  • Body feels tiring
  • On and off fever
  • A limp without injury
  • Swelling pain, and stiffness in joints

Conclusion

Treatment of rheumatoid arthritis at its earliest can help you in many ways. If you find any of the above symptoms, consult an expert. If you need a Pain Management Specialist, call us at 646-862-5555 and book an appointment with our Pain Management Doctor. Dr. Mathew Grimm is an expert in treating all kinds of pain.

Do You Need Joint Injections For Your Pain?

Do You Need Joint Injections For Your Pain? If you have joint pain, you will agree that the pain is sometimes unbearable. Such pain can make your chores impossible and you might not feel active throughout the day. Your doctor can treat you without pills and surgeries. Injections can also be an option if you are suffering from joint pain.

Injections can help reduce pain and inflammation. You can experience fewer symptoms for months with the help of these treatments. There are several options for injectables that can help manage or eliminate your joint pain. These options are:

  • Corticosteroid Injections
  • Hyaluronic Acid (HA) Injections
  • Platelet-Rich Plasma (PRP) and Stem Cell Therapy Injections
  • Placental Tissue Matrix (PTM) Injections

Do You Need Joint Injections for Pain 01

1.     Corticosteroid Injections

These types of injections are commonly known as Steroid injections. These injections can treat a variety of conditions and are anti-inflammatory. Corticosteroid injections are the first option for defense against osteoarthritis symptoms. These injections can reduce the pain for about 2 to 3 months. They can provide you relief and reduce inflammatory cells. Another benefit of steroid injection is reducing the activity of the immune system. Injecting these injections allows doctors to deliver a high dose of medications into the affected area directly. Other than knees, doctors can also give these injections in the following areas:

  • Hip Joint
  • Shoulder, hand, and elbow
  • Sacroiliac joint
  • Facet joints of the spine
  • Ankle and foot

2.     Hyaluronic Acid (HA) Injections

Do You Need Joint Injections for Chronic Pain 02When Corticosteroid does not work, doctors inject Hyaluronic Acid injections. If the lubricant between the joint is missing, an HA injection can help replace it. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approve these for use in the knees but some doctors use these for shoulders and hips too. These injections help provide relief from pain and stiffness.

You get this injection like you get other ordinary injections. After cleaning the area, the doctor may inject a local painkiller if you have knee swollen with access fluid. After that, the doctor will withdraw any access fluid by inserting the needle. Then the doctor inserts hyaluronic acid into the knee joint by keeping the same needle in place. HA treatment has shown great effects in experiments and studies;, anti-inflammatory, analgesic, intra-articular lubrication, and chondroprotective effects are some examples. You can find below some advantages of hyaluronic acid:

  • Your skin will look more supple and healthier.
  • It hydrates the skin and reduces the appearance of wrinkles.
  • It plays a great role in healing wounds.
  • It keeps the joints between your bones lubricated.
  • It is a great pain reliever.

3.     Platelet-Rich Plasma (PRP) Injections

PRP Injections can also treat joint pain. To promote healing these injections use your blood and platelets. Platelets contain proteins that can help in healing soft tissues. They can help alter the immune system to reduce inflammation. PRP has also been useful in promoting cell regeneration. Some advantages of Platelet-Rich Plasma injections are:

  • This plasma comes from the patient’s body and contains lesser risks.
  • These are natural and autologous fluids.
  • There is no use of pharmaceutical chemicals, plumping agents and strong acids in this treatment.
  • Treatment with Platelet-Rich Plasma has long-lasting results.
  • It only takes a few minutes to complete.
  • It increases the production of collagen.

4.     Placental Tissue Matrix (PTM) Injections

Placental Tissue Matrix is useful for decreasing pain related to osteoarthritis. These injections contain placental tissue. These tissues, obtained after healthy baby delivery of a healthy mother, are helpful for knee pain. A number of growth factors in these tissues promote healing.

  • These tissues are safe and effective for the body.
  • These are easy to administer.
  • PTM tissues do not require extensive methods to obtain.
  • Not a really expensive method to reduce pain.
  • These are free of tissue rejection concerns. This happens because of amniotic cells immune-privileged status.

Conclusion

Joint injections can help you prevent pain for several months and substitute painful surgeries and pills. To know better how these injections can give you relief from joint pain, contact us.

Give us a call at 646-862-5555 or book an appointment with our Pain Management Doctor to get help with your condition.

What Is A Pain Management Specialist?

Physicians who get special training in treating all kinds of pain are pain management specialists. The reasons for pain may vary from person to person. The pain may be a result of injury, chronic conditions, surgeries or nerve damage.

Pain Management Specialist NYC

What Is Pain Management?

Pain management may be simple or it can be complex depending on the reasons of pain. To manage pains, like chronic pain, is a challenge for both pain management specialists and the patient. The main goals of pain management are:

  • To increase flexibility and mobility
  • To decrease pain
  • To helps in decreasing medical complications of pain
  • To provide relief to patients
  • To restore physical, social and emotional functions

What Does Pain Management Specialists Do?

A pain management specialist approaches the problem from every angle and recognizes the complex nature of pain. They minimize pain instead of eliminating it. These specialists improve the functions and increase the quality of life of the people who suffer. Pain management specialist uses various medications and techniques like nerve blocks, spinal cord stimulators, and similar treatments to help reduce pain.

Specialty Areas

Pain management specialists have certification in one of the following specialties.

1.     Neurology

In this specialized field, a neurologist focuses on treatment and the diagnosis of the spinal cord and brain. The common cause of chronic pain is spinal cord related injuries and diseases.

2.     Anesthesiology

Physicians who administer anesthetics are Anesthesiologists. Anesthetics are substances that eliminate or reduce the sensitivity of pain. To treat acute and chronic pain some, anesthesiologists go through additional training in pain management.

3.     Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation

To address painful conditions, physical medicine and rehabilitation doctors use a wide variety of nonsurgical treatments. These painful conditions are related to the musculoskeletal and nervous system. They recover patients’ quality of life by increasing function and decreasing pain.

Roles of Pain Management Specialist

Top Pain Management Specialist New YorkA pain management specialist has special training in treatment, evaluation, and diagnosis of types of pain. Pain can occur due to a variety of disorders that may include acute pain, cancer pain or chronic pain. The different causes of pain can be surgery, nerve damage, injury, metabolic problems like diabetes, etc. Pain can also occur without any specific reason. Roles of Pain Management Specialist include:

  • Having in-depth knowledge about the physiology of pain
  • Calculating complications of the patient’s pain
  • Conducting specialized tests for diagnosing conditions of pain
  • Prescribing the medications of pain problems
  • Performing procedures like nerve blocks, spinal injections, etc
  • Getting ongoing training to get knowledge of medications as new and complex drugs, techniques, and technologies become available every year

1.     Non-Drug, Non-Surgical Pain Management

These kinds of programs include:

  • Physical Therapy – These techniques help in correcting secondary problems of pain. Treatments include; Exercise, awareness, posture and to improve body mechanics. It helps to increase flexibility and strength.
  • Massage TherapyMassage Therapy helps to manipulate soft tissues.
  • Movement Therapy – It works by muscle movements and pain management specialists advise patients to do yoga and tai chi.
  • Transcutaneous Electric Nerve Simulation Therapy – These kinds of therapy can interfere with the body’s pain signals. It works by transmitting painless, mild electric shocks that pass through the skin to the source of pain.

2.     Medications for Pain Management

For the treatment of pain, a pain management specialist can also provide medications:

  • Muscle Relaxants – This type of medication helps the central nervous system relax. Different Muscle relaxants work differently.
  • Nonsteroidal Anti-Inflammatory Drugs – These medicines block the chemical cascade that causes pain and inflammation in the body. Most common medication includes; aspirin and ibuprofen.
  • Antiseizure Medications – These types of medications can treat nerve damage pain. It helps with interfering with the overactive transmission of pain signals to the brain.

3.     Interventional Pain Management

Also by placing devices and injecting injectables, pain management specialists provide pain relief to the body. Some of the treatments are mentioned below:

  • Epidural Steroid Injections – These injections take minimum recovery time and their benefits include reduction of nerve inflammation and pain in the spine.
  • Joint, muscle/tendon injections – For joint and tendon injections, patients should be under ultrasound guidance along with different medications.

Conclusion

As pain management specialists, we can help you with pain to get back to normal life. We know what the causes of your pain are and if you have any diagnostic needs. To give a visit to our clinic for an experienced pain management specialist, simply call at 646-862-5555. Book an appointment with our Pain Management Doctor for further guidance about your pain.

Do You Have Knee Pain? Structure of Knee & Types of Conditions:

Knee pain is quite common, and it can affect you at any age. It may be due to an injury, such as torn cartilage or a ruptured ligament. Many medical conditions like infections, gout, and arthritis can be the reason for knee pain. Symptoms of knee pain may include stiffness, swelling, and pain.

Knee Pain: Types of Conditions

The function that knee joint performs is bending, strengthening, and bearing the weight of the body. The knee is not only a simple joint that hinges but also twists and rotates, which increases the functions that knee performs. The knee relies on several structures to perform all the actions and to support the entire body. These structures include tendons, cartilage, ligaments, and bones.

Structure of Knee

1.     Tendons:

Tendons are the bands that connect muscles to bones. These are fibrous bands. The quadriceps and patellar tendons are important tendons in the knee.

2.     Cartilage:

These cartilaginous structures are also called menisci. Cushioning knee joint is the primary job of menisci.

3.     Ligaments:

These are also the fibrous bands just like tendons and connect femur with the tibia. There are four important ligaments. Ligaments that provide rotational stability to the knee from front and back are the anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) and posterior cruciate ligament (PCL). Those ligaments that provide medial and lateral stability to the knee are called medial collateral ligament (MCL) and lateral collateral ligament (LCL).  MCL provides constancy from inside and LCL from the outside.

4.     Bones:

There are four bones in the knee joint. The thighbone is in the top portion. The thighbone is also called the femur. The patella is present along the front femur. It is the kneecap. Tibia helps in the bottom weight of the joint and is in the lower leg. The remaining bone is the fibula, and it is present in the calf. It provides ligament attachments to create stability.

Conditions for Knee Pain

There are many reasons for knee pain. There is a list of few problems below:

1.     Dislocated Kneecap:

Doctors call it “patellar dislocation.” It occurs when your kneecap slides from its location, causing pain and swelling. Sometimes the knee bends, causing severe pain. This condition takes place when your knee is straight, and the lower leg is bent outwards when twisting. It also happens when the knee bends, and the kneecap is hit. For reduction, doctors push the patella towards the midline while straightening the knee.

2.     Bursitis:

A sac that holds fluid that’s under the skin above your joint is the bursa. The function of the bursa is to prevent friction when joints move. When you overuse, fall, or bend your knee a lot, it can irritate the bursa, leads to swelling and pain. Your doctor might call this condition prepatellar bursitis.

3.     Meniscal tear: 

Sometimes injury on your knee can cause the cartilage to rip. Cartilage has a rough edge, and if you get stuck in the joint can cause pain and swelling.

4.     Patellar Tendinitis: 

Your tendons are inflammatory if you have this condition. Tendon connects kneecaps with the shinbone. Overdo exercises can cause inflammation and sore. The most common cause is repetitive jumping; that is why it is also called “jumper’s knee.”Knee Pain - Types of Conditions

5.     Osgood-Schlatter Disease:

When you are young, the continuous change in your bones and other knee parts may cause this condition. When a tendon connects to the shin, it causes pain and bumps below the knee. This condition is prevalent in teenage boys and girls. Tibial tubercle sometimes makes the bottom of your knee hurt due to excessive exercise.

6.     Osteoarthritis:

The main cause of pain after the age of 50 is due to this condition. People suffering from this condition may feel stiffness in the morning. This type of arthritis causes wear and tears.

7.     Patellofemoral Pain Syndrome:

The main causes of this condition are muscle tightness, imbalance, and misalignment of the legs. If you are suffering from this syndrome, your legs can’t bear your legs and feel knee pain. This condition is more common in women and is not due to an injury.

Conclusion

Knee pain may cause many reasons depending upon age, activities, and injury. The first step you should take is to consult a pain management doctor. To know further about knee pain and its conditions, contact us at 646-862-5555 or book an appointment with our Pain Management Doctor.