Orthopedic Topics


Treatment Guidelines for Low Back Pain

A Patient’s Guide to Treatment Guidelines for Low Back Pain Introduction In the United States low back pain is ranked number five among the most common reasons for physician office visits. Of the patients who get medical care, they usually improve rapidly in the first month. However, up to one-third […]


Intraoperative Monitoring

A Patient’s Guide to Intraoperative Monitoring Introduction Spine surgery can be unpredictable and potentially dangerous because it can involve areas near nerves and the spinal cord. During spinal surgery, there is a risk that damage to the nervous system can occur. This is especially true when hardware or instrumentation is […]


Complementary and Alternative Medicine

A Patient’s Guide to Pain Management: Body Talk Introduction Complementary and alternative medicine (CAM) has become more and more popular as a way to maintain or regain health. CAM refers to a wide range of therapies that complement (go along with) traditional approaches. But when allopathic doctors (those who practice […]


Back Pain in Children

A Patient’s Guide to Back Pain in Children Introduction Until recently, a complaint of back pain in a child or adolescent was considered uncommon. It was usually associated with a certain condition such as tumor, curvature of the spine, a broken spinal bone, inflammation, or infection. However, more recently, reports […]


Chronic Pain and Sleep

A Patient’s Guide to Chronic Pain and Sleep Introduction Sleep and pain problems are among the most common complaints in our society. It is not surprising then that these conditions frequently occur in the same person. Painful diseases such as backache, osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, headache, and fibromyalgia may interfere with […]


Muscle Cramps

A Patient’s Guide to Muscle Cramps Introduction You have over 600 muscles in your body. These muscles control everything you do, from breathing to putting food in your mouth to swallowing. When it comes to muscle cramps, the most commonly affected muscles are the muscles of your upper arms, the […]


Pain Management Medications

A Patient’s Guide to Pain Management Medications Introduction There are several types of medications that can be used to treat pain. No one drug works for everyone. The medications that work best for you will depend on the type of pain you have and your response to them. Your medication […]


Nutrition and Your Spine

A Patient’s Guide to Nutrition and Your Spine Introduction You are what you eat. Is that simply a funny saying or is there some truth to that old adage? The spine is not something that usually comes to mind when one thinks about nutrition – but it should. Nutrition is […]


Chronic Pain and Nutrition

A Patient’s Guide to Chronic Pain and Nutrition Introduction Your nutrition has a major role in how you feel pain. What you eat will give your body the chemistry it needs to make an inflammatory response. Inflammation is what your immune system creates when there is some kind of insult […]


Complex Regional Pain Syndrome

A Patient’s Guide to Pain Management: Complex Regional Pain Syndrome Introduction Complex Regional Pain Syndrome (CRPS) is divided into two categories, CRPS I and CRPS II. CRPS I (caused by an injury to tissues) was previously called Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy (RSD), Sudeck’s atrophy, and shoulder-hand syndrome. CRPS II (caused by […]


Medication Approach to Chronic Pain

A Patient’s Guide to: Medication Approach to Chronic Pain Introduction Pain is the most common reason for visiting a doctor. Treatment for pain consists of non-drug therapy and drug therapy. Examples of the non-drug therapies are physical therapy, relaxation exercises, injections, and massage. Most patients with chronic pain will need […]


Spinal Tumors

A Patient’s Guide to Spinal Tumors Introduction A tumor is an abnormal growth of tissue. There are several types of tumors that can develop in or near the spine. There are many types of spinal tumors. They can involve the spinal cord, nerve roots, and/or the vertebrae (bones of the […]


Nutrition and Surgery

A Patient’s Guide to Nutrition and Surgery Introduction Surgery always means a certain amount of risk to your well being. Surgery is a deliberate, skillful injury to your body. It may take you several weeks to months to heal. Infections and blood loss are two possible complications that your surgeon […]


Nutraceuticals (Dietary Supplements or Vitamins)

A Patient’s Guide to Nutraceuticals (Dietary Supplements) Introduction Nutraceutical is a new word, invented by Dr. Stephen DeFelice in 1989. It is two words put together: nutritional and pharmaceutical. Nutraceuticals are dietary supplements that are also called functional foods. According to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), a nutraceutical […]


Scoliosis

A Patient’s Guide to Scoliosis Introduction Scoliosis is a deformity in the spine that causes an abnormal C-shaped (one curve) or S-shaped curvature (two curves). The spine is not straight but curves to one or both sides. There are three types of scoliosis depending on when it develops. Infantile occurs […]


Clubfoot

A Patient’s Guide to Clubfoot Introduction Clubfoot is a congenital condition that affects newborn infants. The medical term for clubfoot is Congenital Talipes Equinovarus. This condition has been described in medical literature since the ancient Egyptians. Congenital means that the condition is present at birth and occurred during fetal development. […]


Radiofrequency Ablation

A Patient’s Guide to Pain Management: Radiofrequency Ablation Introduction Radiofrequency ablation is a treatment where radio waves are used to create heat and destroy a part of a nerve. This technique is most commonly used to treat pain that is originating in the facet joints of the spine. The procedure […]


Spinal Cord Stimulators

A Patient’s Guide to Pain Management: Spinal Cord Stimulators Introduction A spinal cord stimulator, also called a dorsal column stimulator, is an implanted electronic device used to help treat chronic pain. These devices have been in use for the treatment of pain for over 30 years and they continue to […]


Pain Pumps

A Patient’s Guide to Pain Management: Pain Pumps Introduction Pain pump delivery of narcotic drugs is a rather new option available to persons with cancer and non-cancer pain. It is also called intraspinal (within the spine) or intrathecal (within the spinal canal) delivery. It was first used in 1979 after […]


Lumbar Artificial Disc Replacement

A Patient’s Guide to Lumbar Artificial Disc Replacement Introduction Artificial disc replacement (ADR) is a device or implant used to replace a diseased or damaged intervertebral disc. After removing what’s left of the worn out disc, the ADR is inserted in the space between two lumbar vertebrae. The goal is […]