Tag Archives: Sarasota Orthopedic Associates

HELP: I HAVE BACK PAIN- Should I Still Exercise?

backpain

Sadly, 90% of the American population will experience some form of significant back pain at some point in their life.  While one can get much advice from the internet, magazines, healthcare providers, and even their Aunt Edna on what is the best remedy, it is often unclear whether continuing an exercise program is a good idea following the development of acute back pain.

A good rule of thumb is that for the first day or two one should try to move as tolerated, given their level of the pain.  Studies have shown that the patient who stays in bed not doing any activity will do worse in terms of returning to regular activities as opposed to those who move as best as they can and continue to try to function.

After the first few days one can start to reintroduce activities as tolerated. If, however, any pain radiates down the legs with exercise, then that should be avoided.  Oftentimes, if symptoms are recurring in the leg, they may be more notable when a person is standing or sitting.  In the case where pain radiates down the leg while in a seated position, biking would be an exercise to be avoided while walking or swimming would be a recommended activity.  The same holds true if pain is worse with standing; in that case, biking may be the recommended activity.

In general, it is safe to exercise as long as the pain in the back remains localized and does not become worse with a particular activity.  As with any condition, if these measures along with over-the-counter medication do not help over a period of a week or two, medical care should be sought. At Sarasota Orthopedic Associates, we are well equipped to handle any type of injury, including back pain, and are committed to getting you back to life.

Paul Lento, MD

PM&R, American Medical Society Sports Medicine

 

 

TENNIS ELBOW? It’s Not What You Think!

tennis-elbow Many people will come to the sports clinic with complaints of pain on either side of their elbow which has been present for months and is aggravated by gripping things or shaking hands. While often referred to as Golfer’s or Tennis elbow, this painful tendon condition usually occurs not from playing golf or tennis but from repeatedly gripping or lifting objects improperly. Unfortunately, the condition can become severe enough where the tendons on either side of the elbow will become swollen, degenerated, and possibly torn causing persistent pain. Despite being referred to as lateral or medial epicondylitis by the medical community, this condition is known not to be an inflammatory condition. Because of this, typical anti-inflammatory medications like Ibuprofen or Naprosyn often will not help. While steroid or “cortisone” injections can be tried and may give temporary relief, studies have shown that the condition often returns weeks to months later causing further delay in healing. The good news is that this condition can be treated non-surgically. Medical studies have revealed that a dedicated specific exercise program that concentrates on eccentric strengthening of the elbow and wrist tendons often will successfully cure the problem. Even when rehabilitation fails, other procedures less invasive than having surgery can often be performed which can significantly improve pain in 90% of the cases. So whether you are struggling with chronic elbow pain from playing doubles tennis or from lifting luggage at the airport, the physicians at SOA can evaluate your elbow problem, correctly diagnose the cause of the pain, and suggest a specific treatment regimen which will get you back on the road to recovery. Paul Lento, MD PM&R, American Medical Society Sports Medicine