Conditions

Here are just some of the common conditions we treat every day:

Achilles tendinitis is an overuse injury of the Achilles (uh-KILL-eez) tendon, the band of tissue that connects calf muscles at the back of the lower leg to your heel bone.

Achilles tendinitis most commonly occurs in runners who have suddenly increased the intensity or duration of their runs. It's also common in middle-aged people who play sports, such as tennis or basketball, only on the weekends.

Self-care strategies are usually necessary to prevent recurring episodes. More-serious cases of Achilles tendinitis can lead to tendon tears (ruptures) that may require surgical repair.

Common injuries occurring in the ankle, foot, and heel areas come about as a result of unequal bearing of weight by the legs and feet. These imbalances can often cause undue stress to be exerted on the joints of the feet and ankles.

Arthritis is inflammation of one or more of your joints. The main symptoms of arthritis are joint pain and stiffness, which typically worsen with age. The most common types of arthritis are osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis.

Osteoarthritis causes cartilage — the hard, slippery tissue that covers the ends of bones where they form a joint — to break down. Rheumatoid arthritis is an autoimmune disorder that first targets the lining of joints (synovium).

Uric acid crystals, infections or underlying disease, such as psoriasis or lupus, can cause other types of arthritis.

The main goals of arthritis treatments are to reduce symptoms and improve quality of life.

Back pain is one of the most common reasons people go to the doctor or miss work and a leading cause of disability worldwide. Most people have back pain at least once.

Fortunately, you can take measures to prevent or relieve most back pain episodes. If prevention fails, simple home treatment and proper body mechanics often will heal your back within a few weeks and keep it functional for the long haul. Surgery is rarely needed to treat back pain.

Carpal tunnel syndrome is a hand and arm condition that causes numbness, tingling and other symptoms. Carpal tunnel syndrome is caused by a pinched nerve in your wrist.

A number of factors can contribute to carpal tunnel syndrome, including the anatomy of your wrist, certain underlying health problems and possibly patterns of hand use.

Bound by bones and ligaments, the carpal tunnel is a narrow passageway located on the palm side of your wrist. This tunnel protects a main nerve to your hand and the nine tendons that bend your fingers.

Compression of the nerve produces the numbness, tingling and, eventually, hand weakness that characterize carpal tunnel syndrome.

Fortunately, for most people who develop carpal tunnel syndrome, proper treatment usually can relieve the tingling and numbness and restore wrist and hand function.

As you age, your spinal disks lose some of their water content. That makes them less flexible and more prone to tearing or rupturing with even a minor strain or twist.

Disk herniation is most often the result of a gradual, aging-related wear and tear.

A herniated disk refers to a problem with one of the rubbery cushions (disks) between the individual bones (vertebrae) that stack up to make your spine.

A spinal disk is a little like a jelly donut, with a softer center encased within a tougher exterior. Sometimes called a slipped disk or a ruptured disk, a herniated disk occurs when some of the softer "jelly" pushes out through a tear in the tougher exterior.

A herniated disk can irritate nearby nerves and result in pain, numbness or weakness in an arm or leg. On the other hand, many people experience no symptoms from a herniated disk. Most people who have a herniated disk don't need surgery to correct the problem.

A herniated disk refers to a problem with one of the rubbery cushions (disks) between the individual bones (vertebrae) that stack up to make your spine.

A spinal disk is a little like a jelly donut, with a softer center encased within a tougher exterior. Sometimes called a slipped disk or a ruptured disk, a herniated disk occurs when some of the softer "jelly" pushes out through a tear in the tougher exterior.

A herniated disk can irritate nearby nerves and result in pain, numbness or weakness in an arm or leg. On the other hand, many people experience no symptoms from a herniated disk. Most people who have a herniated disk don't need surgery to correct the problem.

Injuries to the elbow, wrist, and hand areas commonly occur as a result of poor posture, physical injury, or repetitive physical strain. They can be rehabilitated with a combination of spinal mechanic exercises, relief from the aggravating activity, and braces and splints designed to alleviate pressure from affected areas.

Common injuries occurring in the ankle, foot, and heel areas come about as a result of unequal bearing of weight by the legs and feet. These imbalances can often cause undue stress to be exerted on the joints of the feet and ankles.

Common injuries can occur as a result of poor posture, muscle imbalance, physical injury, and/or strain. Most injuries can be resolved with a regimen of chiropractic rehab, strengthening exercises, and slight alterations of the offending activity.

Injuries to the elbow, wrist, and hand areas commonly occur as a result of poor posture, physical injury, or repetitive physical strain. They can be rehabilitated with a combination of spinal mechanic exercises, relief from the aggravating activity, and braces and splints designed to alleviate pressure from affected areas.

70% of all headaches are musculoskeletal. It is estimated that nearly every American will experience head and/or neck pain in his or her lifetime. 157 million workdays are lost each year due to head and neck pain costing some 55 billion dollars in lost productivity. 1.3 million school days are lost annually due to head and neck pain in children. Ironically, unlike lower back pain, most people do not actively seek treatment. Instead, they self-medicate or depend on prescription drugs for what is at best only temporary relief and, at worst, a form of substance abuse with its own medical consequences.

Heel spurs don't always cause pain. In fact, heel spurs often show up unexpectedly on X-rays taken for some other problem.

Heel spurs occur in at least half the people who have plantar fasciitis (PLAN-tur fas-e-I-tis), a painful condition involving the thick tissue that runs between your heel bone and your toes.

In the past, doctors often performed surgery to remove heel spurs, believing them to be the cause of the pain associated with plantar fasciitis. In treating plantar fasciitis now, doctors rely more on ice, arch supports (orthotics), physical therapy and pain medications, and surgery is rarely performed.

Common injuries can occur as a result of poor posture, muscle imbalance, physical injury, and/or strain. Most injuries can be resolved with a regimen of chiropractic rehab, strengthening exercises, and slight alterations of the offending activity.

Joint pain can be discomfort, pain or inflammation arising from any part of a joint — including cartilage, bone, ligaments, tendons or muscles. Most commonly, however, joint pain refers to arthritis or arthralgia, which is inflammation or pain from within the joint itself.

Joint pain can be mild, causing soreness only after certain activities, or it can be severe, making even limited movement, particularly bearing weight, extremely painful.

Pelvic imbalances can lead to an inordinate amount of stress on the legs and consequent serious injuries. These types of injuries are usually best treated with an effective regimen of chiropractic care.

Morton's neuroma is a painful condition that affects the ball of your foot, most commonly the area between your third and fourth toes. Morton's neuroma may feel as if you are standing on a pebble in your shoe or on a fold in your sock.

Morton's neuroma involves a thickening of the tissue around one of the nerves leading to your toes. This can cause a sharp, burning pain in the ball of your foot. Your toes also may sting, burn or feel numb.

High-heeled shoes have been linked to the development of Morton's neuroma. Many people experience relief by switching to lower heeled shoes with wider toe boxes.

It is estimated that nearly every American will experience some type of neck pain in his or her lifetime. Ironically, unlike lower back pain, most people do not actively seek treatment until the pain is too intense. Instead, they self-medicate with over-the-counter drugs or experiment with prescription drugs. Most neck problems are neuro-musculo-skeletal, meaning the root of the problem is from a nerve, a muscle, a bone, or all three.

Peripheral neuropathy, a result of damage to your peripheral nerves, often causes weakness, numbness and pain, usually in your hands and feet. It can also affect other areas of your body.

Your peripheral nervous system sends information from your brain and spinal cord (central nervous system) to the rest of your body. Peripheral neuropathy can result from traumatic injuries, infections, metabolic problems, inherited causes and exposure to toxins. One of the most common causes is diabetes mellitus.

People with peripheral neuropathy generally describe the pain as stabbing, burning or tingling. In many cases, symptoms improve, especially if caused by a treatable condition.

Autonomic neuropathy occurs when the nerves that control involuntary bodily functions are damaged. This may affect blood pressure, temperature control, digestion, bladder function and even sexual function.

The nerve damage interferes with the messages sent between the brain and other organs and areas of the autonomic nervous system, such as the heart, blood vessels and sweat glands.

While diabetes is generally the most common cause of autonomic neuropathy, other health conditions — even an infection — may be to blame. Some medications also may cause nerve damage. Symptoms and treatment will vary based on which nerves are damaged.

Osteoarthritis is the most common form of arthritis, affecting millions of people worldwide. It occurs when the protective cartilage on the ends of your bones wears down over time.

Although osteoarthritis can damage any joint in your body, the disorder most commonly affects joints in your hands, knees, hips and spine.

Osteoarthritis symptoms can usually be effectively managed, although the underlying process cannot be reversed. Staying active, maintaining a healthy weight and other treatments may slow progression of the disease and help improve pain and joint function.

Piriformis syndrome is an uncommon neuromuscular disorder that is caused when the piriformis muscle compresses the sciatic nerve. The piriformis muscle is a flat, band-like muscle located in the buttocks near the top of the hip joint. This muscle is important in lower body movement because it stabilizes the hip joint and lifts and rotates the thigh away from the body. This enables us to walk, shift our weight from one foot to another, and maintain balance. It is also used in sports that involve lifting and rotating the thighs -- in short, in almost every motion of the hips and legs.

Piriformis syndrome usually starts with pain, tingling, or numbness in the buttocks. Pain can be severe and extend down the length of the sciatic nerve (called sciatica). The pain is due to the piriformis muscle compressing the sciatic nerve, such as while sitting on a car seat or running. Pain may also be triggered while climbing stairs, applying firm pressure directly over the piriformis muscle, or sitting for long periods of time.

Plantar fasciitis (PLAN-tur fas-e-I-tis) is one of the most common causes of heel pain. It involves inflammation of a thick band of tissue that runs across the bottom of your foot and connects your heel bone to your toes (plantar fascia).

Plantar fasciitis commonly causes stabbing pain that usually occurs with your first steps in the morning. As you get up and move more, the pain normally decreases, but it might return after long periods of standing or after rising from sitting.

Plantar fasciitis is more common in runners. In addition, people who are overweight and those who wear shoes with inadequate support have an increased risk of plantar fasciitis.

The rotator cuff is a group of muscles and tendons that surround the shoulder joint, keeping the head of your upper arm bone firmly within the shallow socket of the shoulder. A rotator cuff injury can cause a dull ache in the shoulder, which often worsens when you try to sleep on the involved side.

Rotator cuff injuries occur most often in people who repeatedly perform overhead motions in their jobs or sports. Examples include painters, carpenters, and people who play baseball or tennis. The risk of rotator cuff injury also increases with age.

Many people recover from rotator cuff disease with physical therapy exercises that improve flexibility and strength of the muscles surrounding the shoulder joint.

Sometimes, rotator cuff tears may occur as a result of a single injury. In those circumstances, medical care should be provided as soon as possible. Extensive rotator cuff tears may require surgical repair, transfer of alternative tendons or joint replacement.

Sacroiliitis (say-kroe-il-e-I-tis) is an inflammation of one or both of your sacroiliac joints — situated where your lower spine and pelvis connect. Sacroiliitis can cause pain in your buttocks or lower back, and can extend down one or both legs. Prolonged standing or stair climbing can worsen the pain.

Sacroiliitis can be difficult to diagnose, because it can be mistaken for other causes of low back pain. It's been linked to a group of diseases that cause inflammatory arthritis of the spine. Treatment might involve physical therapy and pain-management treatments.

Sciatica refers to pain that radiates along the path of the sciatic nerve, which branches from your lower back through your hips and buttocks and down each leg. Typically, sciatica affects only one side of your body.

Sciatica most commonly occurs when a herniated disk, bone spur on the spine or narrowing of the spine (spinal stenosis) compresses part of the nerve. This causes inflammation, pain and often some numbness in the affected leg.

Although the pain associated with sciatica can be severe, most cases resolve with non-operative treatments in a few weeks.

Common injuries of the shoulder/arm area are often the result of poor posture, muscle imbalances, or repetitive strain from daily activities such as carrying a shoulder bag. It is important not only to rehabilitate the affected muscles and joints, but also to provide the patient with alternatives for postures and movements that cause the problem.

Spinal stenosis is a narrowing of the open spaces within your spine, which can put pressure on your spinal cord and the nerves that travel through the spine to your arms and legs. Spinal stenosis occurs most often in the lower back and the neck.

While spinal stenosis may cause no signs or symptoms in some people, other people may experience pain, tingling, numbness, muscle weakness, and problems with normal bladder or bowel function.

Spinal stenosis is most commonly caused by wear-and-tear changes in the spine related to osteoarthritis. In severe cases of spinal stenosis, doctors may recommend surgery to create additional space for the spinal cord or nerves.

Sports injuries refer to the kinds of injury that occur during sports or exercise. While it is possible to injure any part of the body when playing sports, the term sports injuries is commonly used to refer to injuries of the musculoskeletal system.

Most experts now use the term tendinopathy to include both inflammation and microtears. But for many years most tendon problems were called "tendinitis." Many doctors still use this familiar word to describe a tendon injury.

Most tendon injuries are the result of gradual wear and tear to the tendon from overuse or aging. Anyone can have a tendon injury. But people who make the same motions over and over in their jobs, sports, or daily activities are more likely to damage a tendon.

A tendon injury can happen suddenly or little by little. You are more likely to have a sudden injury if the tendon has been weakened over time.

Tendinopathy usually causes pain, stiffness, and loss of strength in the affected area.

Tennis elbow (lateral epicondylitis) is a painful condition that occurs when tendons in your elbow are overloaded, usually by repetitive motions of the wrist and arm.

Despite its name, athletes aren't the only people who develop tennis elbow. People whose jobs feature the types of motions that can lead to tennis elbow include plumbers, painters, carpenters and butchers.

The pain of tennis elbow occurs primarily where the tendons of your forearm muscles attach to a bony bump on the outside of your elbow. Pain can also spread into your forearm and wrist.

Rest and over-the-counter pain relievers often help relieve tennis elbow.

Thoracic Spine Anatomy and Upper Back Pain. The thoracic spine refers to the upper- and middle-back. It joins the cervical spine and extends down about five inches past the bottom of the shoulder blades, where it connects with the lumbar spine.

The thoracic spine is made up of twelve vertebrae, labeled T1-T12. While the cervical spine is built for flexibility (e.g. turning the head) and the lumbar spine is built for power and flexibility (e.g. lifting heavy objects, touching the toes), the thoracic spine is built for stability. This stability plays an important role in holding the body upright and providing protection for the vital organs in the chest.

The upper back is not designed for motion, and subsequently, injuries to the thoracic spine are rare. However, irritation of the large back and shoulder muscles or joint dysfunction in the upper back can produce very noticeable back pain.

TMJ

The temporomandibular joint (TMJ) acts like a sliding hinge, connecting your jawbone to your skull. You have one joint on each side of your jaw. TMJ disorders — a type of temporomandibular disorder or TMD — can cause pain in your jaw joint and in the muscles that control jaw movement.

The exact cause of a person's TMJ disorder is often difficult to determine. Your pain may be due to a combination of factors, such as genetics, arthritis or jaw injury. Some people who have jaw pain also tend to clench or grind their teeth, although many people habitually clench or grind their teeth and never develop TMJ disorders.

In most cases, the pain and discomfort associated with TMJ disorders is temporary and can be relieved with self-managed care or nonsurgical treatments. Surgery is typically a last resort after conservative measures have failed, but some people with TMJ disorders may benefit from surgical treatments.

Ulnar wrist pain is pain on the side of your wrist opposite the thumb. The pain is often mild at first, but can become severe enough to prevent you from doing simple tasks.

Ulnar wrist pain can vary, depending on the cause. It may worsen when you grip something or twist your wrist. Ulnar wrist pain can be hard to diagnose because it has a number of possible causes.

Finding the exact cause of your wrist pain can be difficult. But when diagnosed correctly, ulnar wrist pain can be treated.