Tag Archives: Orthopedic Doctors Sarasota

THE GIFT OF GETTING BACK TO LIFE

Maggie W

Sarasota Orthopedic Associate’s Occupational Therapy Department continues celebrating National OT Month. To commemorate we are sharing a case study of one of our Occupational Therapy Star graduates.

Matthew exemplifies how Occupational Therapy can help patients get “back on your feet, back to work, back in the game, and back to life”, the SOA mission statement. Matthew is a 28 year old male who was injured at work as an Ocean Rescue Lifeguard. An injury to his cervical spine was a result from practicing dolphin dives as part of a work training exercise.  He experienced temporary paralysis in all four  extremities from his spinal cord compression and  underwent emergency surgery to fuse his neck from C3 to C5.

Matthew was then referred  for inpatient therapy immediately following his surgery to begin his long rehabilitation. Once stabilized, he was discharged home and referred to outpatient Occupational and Physical Therapy.  On his first visit at SOA, he presented as a very motivated, hopeful young man despite his multiple deficits.  His cervical spine was stabilized in a neck brace, and he was able to walk with a rolling walker.  He required assistance to stabilize his balance while his upper extremities were assessed.

The OT/PT team found Matthew to have limited range of motion of his arms, significant weakness, both gross motor and fine motor coordination deficits, and sensory deficits. Initially, Matthew was able to do his own basic self-care with extra time, utilizing adaptive equipment, like a reacher/grabber, shower chair, and grab bars. Basic functions of cutting food and driving were not possible and he was lucky enough to reside with his parents as he recovered.

After careful assessment of his strengths and deficits, his Occupational Therapist derived a plan of care to return him to independent living. Through Mathew’s diligence with his home exercise program and his motivation and positive outlook, he is now walking on his own and performing all of his self-care with improved efficiency.  His goal is to return to work, be able to paddle his rescue board out a quarter mile to a predestined location, dive down 20 feet, grab a handful of sand, and emerge a new, stronger man. Matthew wants to be ready to pursue his passion… rescuing others in need.  “I want to get back to doing what I love.”

Occupational Therapy and Physical Therapy is available at all three locations. If you would like an appointment please go to our website at www.SOA.md to schedule online, or call us at 941.951.BONE. We are able to accommodate same day appointments when needed.

Vivian

Article submitted by Vivian Robinson, OT, CHT at SOA.

A REASON TO CELEBRATE

OT

April is National Occupational Therapy Month … that may not mean much to you now, but very likely it will someday in your future. This year’s theme is living life to its fullest! An Occupational Therapist can help with common upper extremity and hand conditions like arthritis, tendonitis, or repetitive strain which could limit you from doing the activities you enjoy.

So what does an Occupational Therapist do?

After assessing your condition in collaboration with your orthopedic physician, we establish a treatment plan to improve flexibility and strength, recommend and fabricate an orthosis to support the joints of the wrist, hand, or fingers to reduce pain/swelling during activities, and educate you on joint protection techniques to reduce wear and tear of the joints during daily activities.

An Occupational Therapist may also help with rehabilitation after traumatic injuries such as fractures and tendon/nerve injuries. Most important, they provide customized, one-on-one care to help you achieve the best outcome.

What training is required to become an Occupational Therapist? More than you think.  While master’s and doctoral degree programs are common, some colleges also offer combined bachelor and master’s degrees in occupational therapy. There is a focus on general anatomy, the nervous system, physiology, movement, activity, and trends in rehabilitation techniques. A certification process must also be completed before receiving state licensure.

AOTA (American Occupational Therapy Association) describes an OT visit as:

  • Individualized evaluation where patient goals are determined by patient and therapist
  • Customized intervention to improve ability to return to daily activity
  • Outcome evaluation to ensure goals are met, or, changes are made to the plan

If you have a physical condition keeping you from living life to its fullest, the Occupational Therapists at Sarasota Orthopedic Associates can help. For an appointment, call 941.951.BONE or schedule through our website at www.SOA.md. We have locations in Sarasota, Lakewood Ranch, and Venice. Our mission is to get you back on your feet, back to work, back in the game, and back to life.

WHAT SHOULD I EXPECT WHEN I HAVE AN MRI?

O-Scan-In-Use     GE-Signa-HDe-1_5T-MRI

Magnetic resonance imaging, also known as an MRI scan, uses radio waves and magnets along with a computer to create detailed two-dimensional or three-dimensional images of organs and tissues. Radio signals given off by the body are digitally processed to produce images based on both the body’s anatomy and its chemical composition. There is no radiation involved in the MRI exam. Patients who know what to expect tend to have less anxiety about this painless, non-invasive test.

Preparing for an MRI

Most MRI scans do not require dietary restrictions before the test. Leave jewelry at home since it will have to be removed for the test. You will be asked to place your belongings in a locker and change into a gown. Once you are in the exam room, the technologist will confirm your identification and exam orders. An MRI exam is probably one of the easiest and most comfortable medical exams you may ever experience.

During the Test

For some patients, your doctor will order an injection of contrast dye through an IV, which will be inserted just before the scan. This simply makes details of the MRI more clear. You will be asked to lie on a cushioned table that will automatically move into the magnet after you’ve been comfortably positioned. During the test, the technologist will be in another room with a glass window and can be contacted by you through a microphone or a buzzer that you will hold.

While it’s important to lie still during the procedure, the scan itself is painless. Banging, thumping, or tapping noises may be heard, so we provide non-magnetic headphones for you to listen to your choice of music during the test. The entire MRI takes between 15 and 60 minutes to complete depending on the size and number of body parts to be scanned. We also offer Extremity MRI for hand, wrist, foot, or knee scans; this technology places only that specific body part to be inserted into the machine, rather than a full scan. When the screening is over, you may resume normal activities, including working and driving, right away.

Patients experiencing pain or musculoskeletal issues can schedule an appointment with Sarasota Orthopedic Associates at any of our three locations by calling 941-951-2663 or going to our website here. In addition to MRI and other imaging tests, we offer specialized care for chronic and acute conditions of the foot, ankle, hip, knee, shoulder, spine, elbow, hand, and wrist.

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COULD PRP HELP YOUR ORTHOPEDIC INJURY?

prp

PRP, or platelet rich plasma, is not a new technology, but is much talked about currently. Plasma is a component of the blood that assists with clotting to promote growth of new, healthy cells. The theory of PRP is to merge this technology with the body’s natural ability to heal itself.

PRP has a number of applications; some are:

  • Faster healing for tendon injuries such as tennis elbow, runner’s knee, and tendinitis
  • Treating acute sports injuries like sprains and strains
  • Facilitating recovery after surgery to speed healing
  • Pain relief for those with osteoarthritis and other inflammatory conditions

What Might Patients Expect during a PRP procedure?

This simple treatment is performed in clinic on an outpatient basis and takes less than one hour from start to finish. A small amount of blood is drawn from the patient’s arm and put into a centrifuge machine. This centrifuge rapidly spins to separate the blood into layers of PRP and red blood cells. The PRP layer is then injected into the affected injury under a local anesthetic or topical numbing agent on the skin. Often times Ultrasound Imaging is used to target the specific treatment area.

Are There Any Side Effects?

While PRP has been used successfully for many years, it is still considered in the experimental stages. Since the patient’s own blood is used, PRP is a safe procedure. Minor side effects of the treatment might include discomfort or swelling at the injection site. This is alleviated with ice and elevation. Physical Therapy may also be recommended to optimize the effects of PRP.

If you would like more information about PRP or would like to schedule an appointment, give us a call at 941.951.2663. You may also find information on our website here. The experienced physicians at Sarasota Orthopedic Associates have been treating patients in Sarasota, Manatee, and Charlotte Counties since 1978 and offer same/next day appointments in three locations.

DO YOU HAVE RUNNER’S KNEE?

RUNNERS

Avid runners can experience pain for a number of reasons, from simple trauma (banging the leg against something) to muscle spasms (usually the result of improper stretching). When running and jogging are consistently painful, however, the problem could be runner’s knee. Exercise enthusiasts should always pay attention to pain and respond accordingly. Before panicking over persistent knee pain, however, it’s important to understand what runner’s knee is and how to recognize it.

Recognizing Runner’s Knee

Patellofemoral pain syndrome (PFPS), the medical term for runner’s knee, is a persistent irritation localized at the juncture of the patella and femur—the “top” side of the kneecap. It’s commonly associated with running and jogging, hence its lay name. PFPS is characterized by a dull knee pain that sufferers describe as “behind” or “around” the top of the kneecap.

Exercise and activity can aggravate runner’s knee injuries, particularly when the direction is downhill such as descending stairs or running on a decline. Squatting and sitting for long periods can also be problematic for people dealing with PFPS. There is likely also knee pain associated with resisting leg extensions. The kneecap itself may be adversely sensitive to pressure.

PFPS vs. Patellar Tendonitis

As noted above, PFPS produces pain localized on the upper side of the kneecap. If the pain manifests “inside” or “below” the kneecap, the condition in question is more likely patellar tendonitis—an inflammation of the tendon connecting the patella to the shin muscle. Patellar tendonitis results from a different kind of injury than does PFPS, though the only sure way to get a diagnosis is by meeting with a certified doctor, preferably an orthopedist.

Misconceptions About PFPS

PFPS can strike anyone who actively and/or aggressively uses the legs and knees for work or recreation. While less common among active children, there is a higher tendency for this kind of knee pain among women runners. The reasons for this correlation remain unclear; however, recent research has disproven the so-called “Q-angle” theory that the wider hips of female physiology render women more susceptible to runner’s knee.

In the last decade, science focused on PFPS has discovered that the knee actually moves differently during runs or squats than it seems to the person exercising. Although it feels like the kneecap “tracks” outward when running or squatting, it’s actually the femur that is rotating above and around the patella. This fact explains why PFPS sufferers generally also have weakened hip abductor and external rotator muscles. In fact, the most successful physical therapy regimens for runner’s knee all involve strengthening these muscles to help stabilize knee movement and reduce irritation.

Sarasota Orthopedic Associates offers customized pain management treatment plans for runners and athletes throughout the Gulf Coast of Florida. Fill out our contact form to schedule your appointment today.

With three convenient locations we are able to offer same/next day appointments when needed.  Like us on Facebook here. Follow us on Twitter here.

THE ESSENTIAL GUIDE TO PROPER FITNESS STRETCHING

stretching

Stretching is an important part of any physical activity for casual fitness fans and seasoned athletes alike. Engaging in proper stretching of the muscles before working out may help decrease the risk of pain from an injury, improve range of motion, and even improve performance. Here are four expert techniques to try.

  1. Warm up Before Stretching

One of the biggest exercise misconceptions is that stretching constitutes a warm-up. In fact, it’s important to warm up muscles with 5 to 10 minutes of light walking or jogging before stretching. Stretching cold muscles can easily cause an injury.

  1. Stretch After a Workout

Stretching after a workout may also assist with pain and injury prevention. Because muscles are already warm from exercise, this type of stretching provides optimal benefits. Working out increases circulation to the muscles and joints, so individuals are at their most flexible following exercise.

  1. Try Dynamic Stretching

The traditional stretch, a static stretch, involves extending the muscle to its greatest capacity and holding the pose for up to 30 seconds. The stretch should be released if pain occurs. Another effective stretching technique is the dynamic stretch, in which the muscle group is continuously stretched through its full range of motion with smooth, ongoing movements. For example, use the same moves that will be used during the planned workout, but at a lower intensity and slower speed.

  1. Consult a Trainer

Those who are new to working out should consider visiting a personal trainer. These experts will demonstrate how to stretch muscles safely and correctly to minimize the risk of pain and injury while exercising.

Sarasota Orthopedic Associates can provide treatment for many types of sports injuries. We offer physical therapy services to help improve flexibility, strength, and range of motion. With three convenient locations that offer same-day or next-day appointments, our patients experience efficient diagnoses to help them return to their normal lifestyle. Contact us today to schedule an appointment.

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GOLF – Relaxation or Frustration?

golf-swing

For many people, the game of golf is a conundrum … a game of frustration and/or one of relaxation. It takes commitment, practice, and patience to make the game enjoyable. Unfortunately, all that practice may lead to stress on parts of the body, particularly the shoulder. Even professionals may experience a golf injury of this type. Injury may come for any number of factors including poor swing, incorrect set up/follow through, overly robust swing, improper grip, and overuse.

These repetitive factors may contribute to a common shoulder injury of tendinitis, bursitis, or even a tear in the rotator cuff. Pain may not be felt immediately during play, but rather the night after or when lifting arms overhead. Often times, the discomfort is felt just below the shoulder in the upper arm.

Fortunately there are simple methods to prevent a shoulder injury. Since most injuries are from overuse and improper form, the first and foremost prevention is to rest between playing.

  • If you are experiencing discomfort from a daily round of golf, limit yourself to every other day allowing your shoulder time to recover.
  • Support your muscles with eccentric (lengthening or the “negative”) motions to build strength on your “off” days.
  • Proper warm ups and stretches will help decrease injuries.
  • Learn proper mechanics to decrease the swing force on your shoulder (the most powerful generator of the swing comes from the hips so when mechanics are good this will decrease stress on the shoulders).
  • Enlist the assistance of a professional to correct your mechanics. The bonus? An improved game!

Assuming you’ve done all you can to prevent an injury yet you do sustain a shoulder injury, what’s the best course of treatment?

  • Rest, rest, rest; it’s extremely important to allow the shoulder sufficient time to heal prior to getting back on the course. Do NOT play when you are in pain or you will exacerbate the shoulder trauma.
  • Icing on and off for a day will help with swelling and may provide relief.
  • Anti-inflammatories, or NSAIDs, may ease the discomfort. These should be used only for a limited time.
  • If your discomfort continues longer than a week and/or persists at night, it’s time to consult a physician.

When pain persists for an extended period of time, an orthopedic sports medicine physician will be able determine the cause and amount of damage. Clinical examination, X-rays and/or an MRI will provide a closer look and valuable data on the best course of treatment. We may prescribe physical therapy or a cortisone injection. If surgery is required, surgical advancements have progressed allowing us to utilize minimally invasive techniques such as arthroscopy.

Julie Gladden Barré, MD is a Fellowship Trained/Board Certified Orthopedic Surgeon with a specialty in Sports Medicine at Sarasota Orthopedic Associates. Our commitment is to get patients back on their feet, back to work, back in the game, and back to life. Like us on Facebook here. Follow us on Twitter here.

HERE’S SOMETHING YOU MIGHT NOT THINK OF …

Image result for dog sending get well soon

It’s a festive time of year when we are in a mad rush to decorate our homes and buy those special presents for our loved ones. What about a family member or friend who has to undergo surgery during this time of year? It’s hard to celebrate when you’re in the healing process and who doesn’t love being pampered after a surgery or long hospital stay? Thoughtful personal gifts or gift baskets with items that help nurture someone on the mend will be well appreciated and more lasting than flowers.

Here are 15 ideas when you want to give more than a get well card:

  1. A basket of comforting tea samples and wildflower honey sticks
  2. Adult coloring books and pencils
  3. Jammies / robe
  4. Non-skid slippers
  5. An uplifting book
  6. Healing herb plant
  7. Plush pillow or throw
  8. Offer to tidy up their house
  9. A lap desk to use when they are in bed
  10. Lavender oil products (healing benefits)
  11. Pampering gift basket with lotion, soaps, magazine, bottled water, mints
  12. Homemade soup to eat now or freeze
  13. Healing Himalayan salt block lamp
  14. Meal delivery
  15. Play chauffer to run errands

There are probably many more. What are your suggestions?

At Sarasota Orthopedic Associates our mission is to get our patients back on their feet, back to work, back in the game, and back to life. We have three locations and offer same/next day appointments when needed. Call us at 941-951-BONE or visit our website here.

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IS THERE SUCH A THING AS TOO MUCH GOLF?

golf-pain

Frequent rounds of golf can cause a number of painful conditions from chronic overuse of the muscles and tendons. Back pain resulting from improper form is one of the more common complaints in orthopedics. First and foremost, having a golf pro will help avoid injuries as well as improve your game. Despite how hard you try, at some point you may fall victim to a back injury just like the golf professionals. When injuries do occur there are non-surgical and minimally invasive treatments to alleviate discomfort.

Simply avoiding the exacerbating repetitive task may alleviate pain, however, giving up your golf game is not practical. NSAIDs and the RICE (rest, ice, compression, elevate) provide temporary relief but do not necessarily address the primary reason for discomfort.

The key to preventing a back injury is working with your golf pro to optimize the mechanics of your swing. Muscle stains can be caused by an over-powerful swing or an incorrect weight shift on the follow through, thus causing your lower back pain. When this happens and, if the condition is beyond the assistance of RICE and anti-inflammatories, there are non-surgical treatments we provide to get you back in the game.

Some of the many options are:

  • Radiofrequency Ablation, otherwise known as RFA, is a safe, effective means to treat pain from arthritic joints in the neck and low back. The procedure uses heat to disable only the sensory nerves that transmit pain impulses in the spine. Benefits of this therapy may last up to a year and sometimes longer.
  • Epidural injections are used to reduce inflammation and pain from nerve root compression in the neck and low back. In many cases this provides immediate relief and may provide relief lasting up to a year.
  • PRP, platelet rich plasma, is a conservative approach to natural healing. A small amount of blood is drawn from the patient’s arm and placed into a centrifuge to separate the layers of blood. The PRP layer is then injected into the localized area to be treated. The purpose is to merge this technology with the body’s natural ability to heal itself quickly.

Dr Justin Raye is a Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation physician with a specialty in Interventional Pain Medicine at Sarasota Orthopedic Associates. While his treatment focus on pain is vast, some of the more common conditions include back/neck pain, herniated discs, sciatica, spinal compression fractures, and sports injuries. Treatment therapies include image guided injections, kyphoplasty, spinal cord stimulation, radiofrequency ablation, and regenerative medicine (Platelet Rich Plasma and Stem Cell Therapy). Dr. Raye sees patients in all three SOA locations. When needed, patients are seen on a same or next day basis.  Visit our website to make an appointment or call 941-951-BONE.

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backpain

MRI’s Have All The Answers … OR DO THEY???

shrugging shoulders

“Doctor, haven’t you looked at my MRI?”

This is a question that frequently comes up while visiting a doctor’s office. Most patients who have experienced an orthopedic issue at one time or another will probably undergo an MRI to better clarify the cause of the problem.

However, diagnostic studies such as MRI’s are not always the answer and in many ways can lead to more tests, anxiety, and potentially unnecessary and ineffective treatment. For example, numerous medical studies have been published detailing how MRI’s reveal many “abnormalities” which most likely are considered typical age-appropriate changes and most likely don’t need aggressive treatment.

In a landmark study published in the New England Journal of Medicine in 1994, Jensen and his colleagues performed MRI’s of the lumbar spine in close to 100 people who had NEVER had any complaints of back pain. Remarkably over 50% had disc bulges, 30% had disc protrusions, and even 1% had massive disc extrusions, all without having any pain.  Similarly another classic MRI study revealed that the majority of patients will have an “abnormality” seen on MRI of the knee such as a meniscus tear or arthritis but have no pain.  As expected, many of these “findings” become more common with advancing age.

So what are we to conclude with this quagmire of MRI information? The most important factor is considering what every good physician learns in medical school. A good physician should obtain an accurate history and physical and correlate that to the imaging study like the MRI.

“The mystery is in the history” is a good rule of thumb to live by when talking to patients and helping them to sort out what the actual problem is. It is vitally important to correlate the patient’s history and physical examination to imaging tests like MRI and CT scans. In this way, the normal age-related changes seen on these imaging tests can be addressed appropriately and patients will ultimately have better outcomes.

So remember the important question is not “has the doctor seen my MRI?” but more importantly “has the doctor listened and examined me? “

Paul Lento, MD is a triple board certified Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation physician at SOA. He has earned the national honor as a Castle Connelly “Top Doc” four years in a row. Sarasota Orthopedic Associates offers same/next day appointments at our three locations in Sarasota, Lakewood Ranch, and Venice. For more information visit our website at www.SOA.md or call us at 941-951-BONE.

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