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.

Category Archives: Arthritis

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.

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.

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!

Different types of Arthritis

different-types-of-arthritis-01From the root word Arthro, meaning joint, and the suffix -itis, meaning inflammation, arthritis refers to inflammation in any joint. This inflammation comes with swelling, redness, and pain. The exact joints affected may vary from person to person, but the overall symptoms are generally the same. However, there are a couple of different types of arthritis that present in different ways. The two most common are discussed below. There are also a few key treatment opportunities to help those suffering from arthritis.

Osteoarthritis

The more common of the two primary forms of arthritis, osteoarthritis is a disorder that causes degeneration of the joint. Typically, this is due to wear and tear on the cartilage in the joint. Eventually, the cartilage is so worn down but it is unable to cushion the movement of the joint. At this point, it is simply bone moving against bone when the joint is used. This is incredibly painful, both when the joint is being moved and when the joint is still. Typically, osteoarthritis affects older people or those who have undergone repetitive high impact movements. Even something as simple as walking can, over time, have a serious effect on the joint. As the cartilage is worn down, more nerves are exposed and aggravated as the bones grind together making movement uncomfortable.

Rheumatoid Arthritis

xrays-scans-different-arthritis-top-pain-doctor-nyc-03As opposed to osteoarthritis, where the cartilage is worn down through youth and overtime, rheumatoid arthritis is actually an autoimmune disorder. In cases of rheumatoid arthritis, the body itself identifies the lining of the joint as a potential threat and works to attack it. This attack can cause pain, redness and swelling, and difficulty in moving the joint. Rheumatoid arthritis has a genetic component, meaning that a history of rheumatoid arthritis makes it more likely that you will suffer from rheumatoid arthritis. Rheumatoid arthritis can affect people of any age and can begin at any time.

Similarities and Differences in Types of Arthritis

These two forms of arthritis, while both causing inflammation of the joint, work in very different ways. Both forms of arthritis can also make it more difficult for people to get moving, especially in the morning. However, as rheumatoid arthritis is an autoimmune disease, it tends to affect the body symmetrically. Osteoarthritis, being caused by repeated injury or fatigue, tends to have one side more affected than the other. In addition, rheumatoid arthritis tends to affect the smaller joints first. People with rheumatoid arthritis typically have swollen, painful joints in their fingers. People with art osteoarthritis tends to find the most affected joints are the larger joints, like the hips or the knees.

Treatments

areas-body-for-arthritis-02There are many treatment opportunities for arthritis, ranging from less intensive and invasive solutions to surgery. Some of the simplest things that you can do to treat both rheumatoid and osteoarthritis include making changes in one’s lifestyle. Cutting out fatty, greasy foods will help reduce inflammation in the entire body. Regular participation in exercise will increase the body’s response rate to inflammatory conditions. If these simple solutions don’t seem to help, over the counter pain relief medication may be able to help. In more severe cases, Dr. Grimm will be able to make a more specific recommendation with regard to specific medications, surgical procedures, or other treatments to help reduce the pain caused by arthritis.

Are you dealing with arthritis? Make an appointment with Dr. Grimm to go over treatment solutions that may help you. 

Arthritis, What is it?

It is estimated that 350 million people all over the world suffer from arthritis, including roughly 40 million in the U.S. This condition can range greatly in severity and there are different types of arthritis. Even some very young people get diagnosed with this condition due to their genetic makeup. It can be a mildly irritating condition for some, and a constant debilitating struggle for others.

What Is Arthritis?

arthritisArthritis is essentially inflammation of the joints that causes the cartilage tissue on the ends of the bones to deteriorate over time. Rheumatoid arthritis, the most common type, is classified as an autoimmune disorder that affects the lining of the joints.
Certain conditions, including lupus and psoriasis, can eventually lead to a person developing arthritis. Most people with arthritis experience joint pain to some degree, and it is called arthralgia. It is known as polyarthritis when four or more of a person’s joints are affected. Many people with this condition inherited it from their parents.

Symptoms

There are many different symptoms that a person can experience, including:

  • Stiffnessarthritis
  • Difficulty walking (limping)
  • Swelling of the joints
  • Warm sensation in the joints
  • Decreased range of motion
  • Weakness
  • Tenderness of the joints

A vast majority of people experience inflammation of the joints. Some people experience severe pain while others don’t have any pain at all. Sometimes, arthritis can actually affect a person’s organs, leading to swelling of the lymph nodes, fatigue, weight loss, and fever.

Treatment

Treatment depends entirely on the type of arthritis a person has. The more accurate the diagnosis is, the more effective the treatment will be.

arthritisDoctors often recommend that patients take over-the-counter pain medication like Ibuprofen and Tylenol to manage their joint swelling and discomfort. These medications can be quite effective for many people with this condition.

Some people with rheumatoid arthritis have to take certain prescription medications that can negatively impact their immune systems. Arthritis in the lower back can irritate the spinal nerves, sometimes requiring a surgical procedure to alleviate symptoms.

There is no cure, but there are a number of effective treatments for managing the symptoms on a daily basis.

If you are struggling with joint pain caused by arthritis, let us help. Make an appointment with us today so our nationally renowned NYC pain doctor can relieve your discomfort.

If you are experiencing any type of pain at all, we highly encourage you to call us today at 646-862-5555 to schedule an appointment with the best pain doctor in all of New York City.