Thoracic outlet syndrome is a common condition in which numbness and tingling is felt down the arm. The condition is often made worse by working with the arms over the head or extended sitting with the arms raised in the front of the body (computer work). Usually the pain travels down the inside of the arm to the little finger and ring finger.
The cause of the condition is compression of the brachial plexus (the nerves that run down the arm) or the arteries that supply the arm. There are several possible areas in which the nerves or blood vessels may become impinged. Muscular compression by the muscles in the side of the neck (called the scalenes) is one such area. Additionally tightness of the pectorals may also cause irritation of the brachial plexus. Some postures are especially associated with thoracic outlet syndrome such as sitting with the head bent forward and the shoulders rounded. In some cases a traumatic incident may be associated with the onset of thoracic outlet syndrome.
Thoracic outlet syndrome is often treated with success by conservative measures including Chiropractic treatment and myofascial release. Postural correction, stretching and muscle strengthening are also important. Trigger point therapy or myofascial release is often very helpful as well. In Chiropractic treatment adjustment of the first rib is a common treatment as the first rib is one possible cause of impingement of the brachial plexus and blood vessels.
Dr. Tom Etter is a Chiropractor with over ten years of practice experience. Etter Chiropractic serves Olathe, Lenexa and Overland Park, Kansas and the surrounding areas.
Plantar fasciitis is the most common cause of heel pain and occurs in all types of persons both athletic and less active. Sometimes, simply walking or standing on hard surfaces may cause symptoms. Plantar fasciitis is an inflammation of the ligament that supports the arch and runs from the heel to the ball of the foot. About half of persons who suffer from plantar fasciitis have a heel spur. Plantar fasciitis may account for up to 10% of running injuries. Acupuncture treatment of plantar fasciitis is often difficult but the results of treatment are often optimized by combining other conservative measures such as orthotics and Chiropractic treatments.
It has been estimated that up to 40% of male plantar fasciitis sufferers are male. For females the percentage tends to be higher (at around 90 Percent).
The pain is usually the worst first thing in the morning and may be especially aggrevated by the first few steps out of bed in the morning. Usually the symptoms are somewhat alleviated by warming up or walking about for a while. Runners sometimes note that the pain is slight to moderate at the beginning of a run and may increase with the duration of the run.
Plantar fasciitis is by far the most common cause for heel pain but other less common causes of the pain may include achilles tendonitis, achilles bursitis, and bone bruise.
The plantar fascia may become thickened in persons suffering from the condition for an extended period. Other complicating factors include thinner fat pads in the feet which may be a concern in some elderly persons or women. The pain may also be referred from the soleus muscle which is the lower part of the calf. This condition may be known as joggers heel.
Plantar fasciitis may be associated with an increase in the mileage walked or run. Changes in surfaces or running shoes may also cause irritation of the plantar fascia.
Some sources claim that up to 80% of cases of plantar fasciitis are due to excessive foot pronation. Overly high or low arches may also predispose to plantar fasciitis.
Acupuncture treatment of plantar fasciitis is usually able to provide some relief in uncomplicated cases within six visits. Some sources recommend a treatment plan of two visitis per week for three weeks. In chronic cases treatment beyond three weeks may be needed.
Disc herniations are one major cause of neck and arm pain. Thoracic outlet syndrome is another condition which may cause diffuse arm pain. Thoracic outlet syndrome refers to compression of the nerves and blood supply to the arm. Several areas may impinge on the nerves and blood vessels in the arm including the upper ribs and muscles of the neck and shoulder. Thoracic outlet is a condition which may be aggrevated by working with the arms over the head. Often thoracic outlet problems with cause a path of pain down the inside of the arm to little and ring fingers.
The Chiropractic approach to treatment of thoracic outlet syndrome involves stretching of tightened muscles and strengthening of weakened muscles. The rhomboids and trapezius are the most important muscles to strengthen which usually involves rowing type exercises. Trigger point techniques are also effective in reducing the muscular compression aspect of thoracic outlet.
Disc herniations are one of the more difficult conditions to diagnose and treat in the Chiropractic practice. Disc herniations in the neck occur primarily in younger persons as the disc tends to dry out later in life and have less of a liquid center that may herniate. After age 40 the disc is said to be less able to herniate.
The most common symptoms of a disc herniation in the neck are complaints of neck and arm pain. The onset of neck and arm pain often follows a neck injury but it may not. Often the pain may begin gradually. A person with a disc herniation in the neck often has a history of multiple episodes of neck pain after minor injury. Weakness in the hand is another common symptom of disc herniation. The pain in the arm is usually described as a deep ache and the pain may be relieved with the hand held behind the head. The pain may also radiate into the middle of the back between the shoulder blades. The motion of the neck is also limited with one side usually being more restricted.
In some cases bone spurs may be responisible for the neck and arm pain and the condition may be very similar to a true disc herniation.
MRI and CT scans of the neck are usually reserved for those in severe pain or those who cannot get any relief from conservative treatment methods.
Dr. Tom Etter is a Chiropractor with over ten years of practice experience. Etter Chiropractic serves Olathe, Kansas, Lenexa, Kansas and the surrounding area.
Chiropractic treatment is effective at increasing the flexibility of the spine by freeing movement at each spinal level making scoliosis less likely to progress. Adjustments of the cervical spine may influence the the righting reflex of the neck joints and help the spine develop an increased sense of balance. Chiropractic adjustments also reduce pain spinal pain and reduce the pain/spasm cycle.
Chiropractic adjustments are also effective in reducing subluxations in the pelvis and sacrum which help to give the spine a level base.