Top10MD Blog

TOP CAUSES OF LOW BACK PAIN

 5 months ago    Leave a comments (0)



We all have had low back pain at one time or another. Low back pain can range from a dull ache to I need to see a spine surgeon now!

Low back pain usually begins after an activity, a sudden movement, or lifting a heavy object but can also arise without any strenuous exertion.

Low Back Pain Symptoms

  • Soreness, Sensitivity to touch
  • Your pain is achy and dull
  • You are suffering from muscle spasms
  • You have difficulty moving around, standing or even sitting
  • Your pain is traveling, moves around to your groin, buttock, upper thigh or down your leg.

A possible cause of low back pain can be a simple muscle strain – with heat or cold packs and time the pain will slowly dissipate. When the pain begins to travel to the buttock, leg and/ or foot you may have a case of sciatica.

Sciatica Symptoms

  • Ongoing pain as opposed to flaring up every few days
  • Weakness, numbness or difficulty moving a leg or foot appears
  • Tingling or burning begins
  • Standing still or sitting for long periods worsen your pain than when you’re walking
  • Your pain is typically on one side of the buttock or leg

When your low back pain begins to affect your everyday life, and impedes your ability to do the things you love to do it’s time to see a specialist. As we age degenerative disc disease begins to set in and should be monitored by an orthopedic surgeon you can trust.

Dr. Cameron Carmody is a Fellowship trained Orthopedic Spine Surgeon, Board Certified by the American Board of Orthopaedic Surgery and a Top10MD. Dr. Carmody has extensive experience in the diagnosis and treatment of a wide range of conditions affecting the spine from disc surgery to scoliosis. To schedule your consultation with Dr. Carmody at Texas Spine Consultants, call 214-370-3535. Dr. Carmody has been named a Top10MD – an honor only 1-in-3 doctors succeeds with in the United States.


NERVE PAIN VS. NERVE DAMAGE

 6 months ago    Leave a comments (0)



Nerve Pain and Nerve Damage are similar but not the same. The thing about it is, you can have one without the other, but you cannot have the other without the one. Let that sink in. Sounds like a riddle. You can experience nerve damage without nerve pain, but you cannot experience nerve pain without nerve damage. That may seem odd to you, but when you understand the difference between the two, you will understand how nerve pain and nerve damage works. Both are such a bother, but there are ways to get relief.

How Do Nerves Work, Exactly?

Nerves are all over the body. They work through electrical impulses. The nerves control the heartbeat, the lungs, and even muscles. You probably do not associate nerves with these parts of the body, but they are what control them. Without nerves, these body parts would not function properly. Nerve functions through electrical signals. As these signals are triggered, it creates a ripple effect until an action is produced. The brain controls it all. The brain acts like a tree. The nerves are like roots that extend out from the bottom of the tree. Although you cannot see them, they are crucial for the proper functioning of the brain. If there is damage, the brain cannot communicate with the area of the body that experienced the damage.

How Nerves Affect Your Game

If you are an athlete, nerve pain and nerve damage can end your career. It’s hard to have real success in your sport when you’re always in pain. For athletes, nerve pain and nerve damage tend to affect the extremities. Peripheral nerves are mostly affected. Athletes often experience injuries in their arms and legs. No matter what sport you play, it requires the use of your extremities. Over the years, your body undergoes a lot of wear and tear. Sometimes these injuries lead to pinched and damaged nerves. The bones and joints shift, and it can put pressure on the nerves. If that pressure is not resolved, you can end up with permanent nerve damage; causing lifelong weakness and numbness. When nerves become totally severed, you will end up with paralysis. If you are paralyzed, you have damaged your nerve, but you will not have any nerve pain. An accident can cause paralysis, but injury, especially, sports injuries are another reason. Normally paralysis is only in small portions of the body like the fingers or wrist. It is rare to become paralyzed in the arms and legs, but with the right amount of force, it is possible.

Treatment Can Help

No one likes being in pain, especially nerve pain. The pain can be irritating, and sometimes pain meds do not solve the problem. If you play sports, nerve pain is not a good sign. Seeing a sports medicine specialists is the best option at this point. They can analyze where the nerve pain or nerve damage is and provide you with the best treatment. Do not ignore nerve pain. Get the treatment you need before it becomes permanent.

Dallas Sports Medicine Specialist Dr. Sherine Reno is a Board Certified American Board of Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation Specialist focusing on performance sports medicine and injection procedures. Dr. Reno is Medical Director of Performance Sports Medicine, a clinic devoted to the treatment of pediatric to elite level athletes. Dr. Reno has been named 2015-2016 Top10MD an honor only 1-in-3 doctor’s in the United States succeed with this recognition. Contact Dr. Reno today on her profile or call 214.342.0400.


BYE-BYE BACK PAIN! EPIDURAL STEROID INJECTIONS

 8 months ago    Leave a comments (0)



If you have suffered from leg or low back pain your doctor may have mentioned the possibility of an epidural steroid injection. Epidural steroid injections are a common treatment for low back and leg pain.

What Are ESI’s?

They have been used as a treatment for lower back problems since 1952 and are still an essential part of non-surgical management for those who have to endure the pain of sciatica or other forms of low back pain. An epidural steroid injection used in combination with a comprehensive rehabilitation program and other forms of conservative treatments can provide additional and longer lasting benefits although a single injection is enough to provide relief.

When Do I Need ESI’s?

Sufferers of low back pain and practitioners agree that providing relief during an acute episode of back or leg pain is beneficial, although temporary. It is the epidural steroid injection that provides enough pain relief to allow you to participate in a rehabilitative program including stretching and exercises.

Epidural steroid injections can be used for more areas than the lower back. They have been successful in easing pain in the neck and mid spine regions. Epidural steroid injections can provide pain relief for one week up to one year. If they are successful in providing relief you may have up to three injections throughout the year.

Since epidural steroid injections deliver medication directly to the source of pain they are commonly preferred over oral steroids or painkillers which do not have a direct impact on the pain. Plus, the possible side effects of an epidural steroid injection are much preferred for most over the side effects of pain pills.

Dallas Sports Medicine Specialist Dr. Sherine Reno is a Board Certified American Board of Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation Specialist focusing on performance sports medicine and injection procedures. Dr. Reno is Medical Director of Performance Sports Medicine, a clinic devoted to the treatment of pediatric to elite level athletes. Dr. Reno has been named 2015-2016 Top10MD an honor only 1-in-3 doctor’s in the United States succeed with this recognition. Contact Dr. Reno today on her profile or call 214.342.0400.


SIGNS OF A CONCUSSION

 9 months ago    Leave a comments (0)



A concussion is a brain injury that can alter the way your brain functions. The effects of a concussion are usually temporary but include headaches, memory, and balance. Concussions often occur after a blow to the head but can also happen when the head is violently shaken. “Because not all concussions cause a loss of consciousness, some people have concussions and don’t even realize it,” says Dallas-Fort Worth Sports Medicine Specialist Sherine Reno. It is always best to follow up with your doctor after any head injury.

How Common Are Concussions?

Concussions can be common, especially if you play a contact sport such as football. Every concussion will injure your brain to some extent but most people usually fully recover.

Common symptoms of a concussion are a headache, loss of memory (amnesia) and confusion. The amnesia, which usually follows a loss of consciousness usually involves the loss of memory of the event that caused the concussion.

Immediate Symptoms

  • Nausea and Vomiting
  • Dizziness
  • Slurred Speech
  • Headache
  • Temporary loss of consciousness
  • Confusion
  • Ringing in the ears
  • Fatigue
  • Delayed symptoms of a concussion in hours or days after the injury may include:
  • Sensitivity to light and noise
  • Memory loss
  • Personality changes
  • Loss of concentration
  • Sleep disturbances
  • Disorders of taste and smell

It is important to keep in mind the signs and symptoms of a concussion and remember they may not always be immediately apparent. Symptoms can last for days, weeks, or even longer. If you experience any of these symptoms after a head injury, seek medical attention immediately.

Dallas Sports Medicine Specialist Dr. Sherine Reno is a Board Certified American Board of Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation Specialist focusing on performance sports medicine and injection procedures. Dr. Reno is Medical Director of Performance Sports Medicine, a clinic devoted to the treatment of pediatric to elite level athletes. Dr. Reno has been named 2015-2016 Top10MD an honor only 1-in-3 doctor’s in the United States succeed with this recognition. Contact Dr. Reno today on her profile or call 214.342.0400.


JOINTS – WHAT DO THEY DO?

 10 months ago    Leave a comments (0)



We have joints in places we did not even know possible. There are over 200 joints in the body and most of us think joints are areas of movement. That is not necessarily the case; joints are simply areas where two or more bones meet. There are three different types of joints, and their function is based on their structure. Joints are important for the body and help with both movement and support.

Everybody has joints, and everybody needs joints. You are familiar with knee joints, hip joints, and maybe even the elbow and ankle joints. There are also joints in the wrist, skull, and spine. Joints are characterized as immovable, slightly movable, and movable. The freely movable joints are divided into five different categories.  

  • Ball-and-Socket JointsThese are larger joints in the body where the end of one joint is round, and the end of the other joint is cupped. This allows the joints to fit together like a glove. The joint can move in all different directions. The hips, shoulders, and hinge joints are all ball-and socket.
  • Hinge Joints Hinge joints are large and include the knee and elbow. This kind of joint can move in backwards and forwards movement.
  • Saddle Joints There are only two saddle joints in the body – the thumbs! The saddle joint gets its name from the way it looks. One end of the bone looks like a saddle while the other end of the bone fits into position. This joint allows the thumb to move side to side, which is important in grabbing on to things.
  • Ellipsoidal Joints – Ellipsoidal joints allow you to move parts of the body at an angle, such as in the hands and feet.  
  • Pivot Joints – Pivot joints are all about rotation. They can twist back and forth but they cannot turn 360 degrees. The neck and forearm are pivot joints as they can only turn so far to the left and the right. If you can turn your head 360 degrees, you and everyone else would be totally freaked out.

The joints in the spine and skull are mostly for stability as they do not have a lot of movement. Joints stay connected through ligaments and tendons. It is because of these structures; your joints do not just fall apart. The joints are susceptible to disease, and although they are very helpful, they can be very painful. Arthritis is one disease that specifically attacks joints and can be a nightmare for you.

When you are dealing with this persistent pain, you may find that a joint replacement is necessary.

Joints are necessary for everyday life. Their primary purpose is movement and stability. They are important for keeping our bodies working properly. Joint pain can greatly limit your mobility. It is diseases like Arthritis that damage these joints and hinder their function. Try not to be too hard on your joints. If you start experiencing any pain or soreness, be sure to talk to a doctor and get the treatment you need.


CUPPING: WHAT ARE THOSE SPOTS?

 11 months ago    Leave a comments (0)



If you have been watching the Olympics, I am pretty sure you might be wondering what are those dark red spots on the Olympians shoulders and back. Some say it is hickeys, while others like to refer to them as huge cigarette burns. Fortunately, that is not the case. These spots are due to a cool technique called cupping.

What is cupping and how does it work?

Cupping is a technique that is mostly used in Asia and Middle Eastern countries, but most commonly in China. Cupping is a form of therapy that is done with a round-glass suction cup. Others might use bamboo or earthenware depending on preference. A flammable substance such as paper, herbs or even alcohol is placed in the cup and then set on fire. The cup is then warmed and placed on the sore parts of the body. This creates a partial vacuum that is said to help with blood flow and stimulating muscles. This helps to relieve pain due to soreness.

What else is it used for?

Previous studies have shown that cupping has been used for treating cancer pain and lower back pain. In both of the studies, it was reported that cupping did, indeed, help to relief pain. A 2012 study published by the journal PLoS ONE suggests that cupping therapy might be the new placebo effect. They concluded that cupping therapy could be effective with other treatments such as acupuncture or even medications in treating diseases and conditions.

Cupping is also used to treat:

  • Anemia
  • Hemophilia
  • Arthritis
  • Fibromyalgia
  • Fertility
  • Gynecological Disorders
  • Eczema
  • Acne
  • High Blood Pressure
  • Migraine
  • Anxiety
  • Depression
  • Allergies
  • Asthma

Olympians such as Michael Phelps, Alex Naddour, and Pavel Sankovich have all posted pictures of cupping effects and seem to be happy with the results. Pavel Sankovich even went as far as posting on his Instagram account about the technique stating, “Cupping is a great recovery tool.” Michael Phelps also showed snippets of his cupping therapy on his Instagram.

It’s not the first time cupping has made the rounds in history. It has been around for a while and has been used worldwide. If a massage just doesn’t do it for your body anymore, cupping might be the technique to give a shot.


PROPER POSTURE CAN LOWER YOUR PAIN

 11 months ago    Leave a comments (0)



It is a common fact that having proper posture can help prevent problems; it makes sense doesn’t it? After all, your body is an amazingly complex organic machine. When one part of the machine is out of alignment, other parts will follow, and the integrity of the entire “machine” is compromised. Having poor posture is the result of having poor body habits. These habits usually include slouching and living an inactive lifestyle. These bad habits will inevitably lead to unnecessary muscle tension and fatigue. One of the most common postural problems happens when your head hangs forward too much. Even though it may not seem like it, your head is quite heavy (up to 14 pounds), and when it hangs forward, your neck muscles are being unnecessarily strained. This causes a chain reaction through the rest of your body. The good news is bad habits can be changed!

Change Your Habits

If you are experiencing pain, it can usually be reversed with proper posture. The most important thing you can do to prevent injury and take care of your body is to sit and stand up straight. Remember that you don’t need to throw your shoulders back and push your chest out. Good posture feels effortless, not artificial and forced. Make sure your head is floating easily above your shoulders. Your shoulders and hips should be level. Your body is designed to have maximum strength, stability, and range of motion when your shoulders and hips are level, and your hips, knees, and ankles should line up vertically. This design configuration will help you avoid dysfunction and subsequent pain.

Here are just a few ways you can improve your posture:

  • Core Strength: The muscles of your abdomen and back are what hold up your upper body while sitting or standing. Strengthening these muscles will make it feel easier and more natural for you to maintain good posture. If you have strong abdominal and back muscles, they help you stand up straighter.
  • Change Positions: Don’t stay in the same place too long. Sitting for long periods encourages slouching. Make sure that you stretch regularly. Both help your posture stay equal and balanced.  Avoiding a sedentary lifestyle is the goal.
  • Footwear: Investing in quality footwear is key to maintaining your body’s proper balance while walking. If you aren’t wearing shoes that provide your feet with the proper support, you could be compromising your posture.
  • Avoid Locking: Locking your knees puts unnecessary amounts of weight on one leg and could cause knee and ankle problems.

Your bad posture habits will have a domino-like effect on your body, leading to unnecessary pain. Make sure you are taking the steps your body needs to stay supple, strong, and active. Taking small measures can significantly improve your quality of life by decreasing your pain.

Fort Worth Orthopedic Surgeon, Dr. Michael Boothby is a highly respected member of the orthopedic community. Dr. Boothby is Board Certified and Medical Director of The Orthopedic and Sports Medicine Institute. Dr. Boothby has been named Top10MD for three years in a row. Only 1 in 3 doctors succeeds with this recognition in the United States. To schedule a consultation with Dr. Boothby link to his profile or call 817-529- 1900 today.


TOTAL ANKLE REPLACEMENT

 11 months ago    Leave a comments (0)



Total ankle replacement, also called ankle arthroplasty, is a surgical procedure for patients with arthritis of the ankle. Orthopedic foot and ankle specialists use this procedure to relieve pain and maintain motion in the ankle as opposed to an ankle fusion which relieves pain but eliminates motion. Dr. Carr Vineyard, is a renowned Orthopedic Surgeon in Dallas, Texas, shares that arthritic changes in the ankle can occur due to multiple reasons. “Arthritic changes in the ankle can be the result of normal wear and tear, as well as from injuries such as broken bones, dislocations, or frequent sprains. Rheumatoid arthritis and gout are other common causes.” Arthritis of the ankle can lead to the loss of cartilage, intense pain, and deformity, so it is best to visit your board certified orthopedic surgeon at the first signs of pain or injury.

Total ankle replacement procedures are considered for those who experience moderate to severe ankle pain and decreased movement in the ankle from arthritis after trying conservative treatment methods.

Conservative methods include:

  • Physical Therapy
  • Activity modification
  • Anti-inflammatory medication
  • Steroid injections
  • Ankle braces

Dr. Vineyard reports that “ankle replacement surgery is a great option for some patients to eliminate pain and preserve motion at the ankle joint, allowing them to continue with normal activities.” During the procedure, high-tech metals and plastics are used to replace the damaged joint surface, allowing for continued movement of the ankle. When the motion of the ankle is preserved with a total ankle replacement, the surrounding joints are also protected from increased wear and tear. In the past, those who have had ankle fusions usually had arthritis in the surrounding joints within 15 years. For this reason, the number of ankle replacements being performed is increasing dramatically with significantly improved outcomes using newer techniques. Patients are able to be more active after a total ankle replacement than they were before the procedure with little or no pain. If you have ankle arthritis/pain and are interested in learning about your treatment options, contact Dr. Vineyard for a consultation.

Dr. Carr Vineyard is a Dallas Board Certified Orthopedic Surgeon, who specializes in the comprehensive management of foot and ankle disorders with The Carrell Clinic. Dr. Carr Vineyard has been named Top10MD for 2016. Only 1 in 3 doctors succeeds with this recognition in the United States. To schedule an appointment with Dr. Vineyard call 214-220-2468.


FINDING A SURGEON, YOU TRUST | A MATTER OF LIFE & DEATH

 11 months ago    Leave a comments (0)



Surgeries that some consider routine can still sometimes cause serious complications. No matter how straightforward you think your surgery might be, you still want to be in the absolute best surgical hands.

Today, your surgeon and hospital are especially important for procedures that are new or complex or even routine. You should be concerned and research but your surgeon and the hospital for that matter as most errors happen in a hospital setting according to John Hopkins report in May noting the third leading cause of death is medical errors. In your search for the best surgeon one indicator is how often your surgeon performs the procedure you’re seeking. For example, a study by researchers at New Hampshire’s Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center of people undergoing surgery for pancreatic cancer found that annual death rates were nearly four times higher for those treated by surgeons who performed the fewest operations.

With that being said, how should you choose a surgeon, someone with whom you’ll be sharing some of your most personal information and entrusting with life-and-death decisions? Communication with your surgeon is essential.

Ask your prospective surgeon these questions before going under…

Are you board certified, and is your certification current?

  • Look for a surgeon who has the necessary board certification(s), necessary training, and has maintained their certification(s) in the specialty they are practicing.

Is this surgery necessary?

  • Avoiding surgery entirely is the only sure way to avoid a surgical complication; understanding the effectiveness of the surgery and having exhausted alternatives you then need to compare the results of your alternatives with the possible risks of the surgery. 

What are your success, failure, and complication rates?

  • Not all surgeons are willing to be upfront with this information, but a good surgeon will.

What is your experience with this surgery?

  • Ask your surgeon how many of these procedures he or she has performed and compare that number with other surgeons performing the same procedure. The best surgeon is not necessarily the busiest surgeon; it’s about avoiding the surgeon who has not performed the procedure as much or as often or as well.

What’s the hospital’s infection rate?

  • Seventeen states now make that information public, and many hospitals report their rates voluntarily. Kudos to them! After asking these questions and others relating to your needs, likes, and dislikes, do your homework and make your choice. Your final decision could be one of the most important you’ll make for you and your family.

To locate a Top10MD Surgeon you can trust visit Top10MD.com and schedule your appointment today.


CERVICAL ARTIFICIAL DISC REPLACEMENT

 1 year ago    Leave a comments (0)



Your cervical spine is made up of seven bones, called cervical vertebrae, stacked on top of each other in your neck area. In between your vertebrae are cervical discs. Your cervical discs is as a cushion for your vertebrae. Dallas Orthopedic surgeon Dr. Cameron Carmody says, “Cervical discs are a marvel of the human body, they are amazing in their ability to absorb a large compressive load while also providing the range of motion between the bones in the neck.”

Cervical artificial disc replacement surgery involves removing a diseased or damaged cervical disc and replacing it with an artificial disc. When the space between your vertebrae has become too narrow and part of your vertebrae or your cervical disc is pressing on your spinal cord or spinal nerves it can cause weakness, numbness, or pain. When these symptoms do not respond to nonsurgical types of treatment, disc surgery may be recommended.

In the past, with traditional cervical disc surgery, the diseased disc is removed and your cervical vertebrae above and below the disc are fused together. The FDA has recently approved the use of an artificial disc to replace your natural cervical disc. This new procedure will allow more movement following surgery and place less stress on your remaining vertebrae.

The loss of space between your cervical vertebrae could result from cervical disc degeneration, or wear and tear. Cervical discs begin to bulge and collapse with age, beginning at age 60 for most people. Some have more symptoms than others from cervical disc degeneration.

Symptoms of Cervical Disc Degeneration

  • Headache
  • Neck stiffness
  • Pain that travels from the neck into the shoulders and arms
  • Numbness in the arms
  • Neck pain
  • Neurological symptoms

Dr. Cameron Carmody

is a Fellowship trained Orthopedic Spine Surgeon, Board Certified by the American Board of Orthopaedic Surgery and a Top10MD. Dr. Carmody has extensive experience in the diagnosis and treatment of a wide range of conditions affecting the spine from disc surgery to scoliosis. To schedule your consultation with Dr. Carmody at Texas Spine Consultants, call 214-370-3535. Dr. Carmody has been named a Top10MD – an honor only 1-in-3 doctors succeeds within the United States.


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