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Stepping Stones Rehab. Services

6320 159th St, Oak Forest, Suite F, IL 60452

PH: 708-687-8768, FAX: 708-364-0518

www.handrehabclinic.com

My Blog

Blog

Tommy John Surgery in throwing athlete

Posted on September 12, 2018 at 10:34 AM Comments comments (1072)
Tommy john surgery is the repair of ulnar collateral ligament of elbow. It is named after the pitcher from LA dodgers to get this surgery done in 1974 for the first time. 
This is a very big topic with lot of myths like after surgery you could throw even faster and harder which has been proven completely wrong. 
 
Recently as the need for speed has risen among young athletes these surgeries are becoming more common. 
 
Not only the need for throwing hard but also doing so without proper mechanics, without proper warm up and proper conditioning is also a contributing factor. 
Role of throwing curve balls at an early age before skeletal maturity has been regarded a contributing factor
but certain researches are finding that there might be no correlation.  see reference: 
If you walk around the baseball fields during the baseball season and watch pitchers you could see the variety of pitchers throwing different ways with ultimate main goal of throwing hard. 
Not only the young pitchers are at risk of causing damage to the ulnar collateral ligament (UCL) but the Major league pitchers are also in the news frequently even though they have full squad of sports physicians, trainers etc. 
 
My perception is that there should be focus upon full body conditioning, special focus upon throwing mechanics and proper routine before pitching in the game especially in the cold evenings. 
 
As the biometrics is taking over our sports where teams select bigger kids especially hitters, young pitchers strive to throw harder hurting themselves in the process sometimes. Advancement in equipment like composite bats and other material is also making harder for pitchers so they want to throw harder to get ahead in the game. 
There are some steps taken by certain organizations to change the bat composition to maintain a balance b/w bat and ball. 
 
Eventually the onus is on coaches and parents to talk to their young pitchers if they notice any early signs of discomfort before the serious damage is done. 
As some young pitchers would not complain even if they are hurting. One needs to be a good coach to spot these signs. 
Some signs could be shaking of the pitching arm after every pitch, sudden loss of speed and accuracy, sudden change in throwing mechanics to compensate for the painfully joint etc. 
 
Injury to throwing arm could be minimized by proper warm up before pitching, adequate resting period b/w days of pitching. 
 
There are certain group muscles of shoulder and forearm needs to be strengthened to put less strain at the Ulnar collateral Ligament on the medial inner side of elbow. 
 
Please talk to an Occupational therapist Physical therapist with experience in upper extremity rehab. to evaluate your son/daughter as soon as the pain develops. They can guide you with proper rehab. program to make faster recovery and them back on the field with confidence and help them achieve full potential safely. 
 
Arun Sharma 

Occupational Therapist / Certified Hand Therapist

Throwing Athletes Shoulder

Posted on July 1, 2016 at 10:50 AM Comments comments (0)
Shoulder Pain In thrower athletes i.e pitchers , catchers has been a common problem.If symptoms are misdiagnosed or left unchecked can result in more severe pathology and disability potentially ending the career or loss of occupation. 
Most of these symptoms originate from minor trauma or cumulative stresses especially in younger athletes eventually leading to proximal instability at scapular region. Sometimes more serious injuries like SLAP tear are the underlying causes. 
Through evaluation by a therapist or doctor is required in order to establish proper diagnoses. Frequently symptoms are present away from the actual site of pathology leading to improper diagnoses. For example patient might c/o pain at the anterior aspect of shoulder , Lateral arm pain etc. 

Some of the symptoms which may require immediate attention :
1. Feeling of severe fatigue in arm sometimes explained by patients as " Dead Arm".
2. Affected arm is significantly lower than the non affected arm.
3. Pain in scapular region especially raised medial and lower part of scapula.
4. Clicking sensation at shoulder sometimes palpable hyper-mobility of joint causing stress on surrounding structures. 

Precautions to be followed in order to prevent these injuries:
1. Following proper bio-mechanics while throwing
2. Do not attempt to throw if in pain or fatigued as it might lead to undue stress or start to cause wear and tear at shoulder muscles and surrounding structures.

Please follow up with Rehab. professional ASAP who can identify the true nature/ cause of pathology because if remains unchecked patient might have to undergo surgery.
Proper interventions might include scapula specific stability exs, taping to support / rest hyper-mobile structures, rest, closely monitored strengthening program. 

Elbow pain.. is it tennis elbow or golfers elbow

Posted on April 28, 2011 at 3:01 PM Comments comments (0)
Often times people develop pain in elbow which usually gets worse in certain positions or activites like golfing, heavy gripping, hammering, turning knobs, using manual tools etc.
Elbow pain can be very disabiling; affecting work, leisure activity like golfing, sometimes even making it difficult to hold coffee cup.
These problems could develop from either the acute episode like weekend gardening , lifting , after common house projects requirning drilling etc, or could be the result of sports activities or cumulative trauma at work which causes slow tearing of tendons over the period of time.
Tendons on the back side of hand originate from the outer part of elbow and their origin at outer part of elbow is usually the culprit in "tennis elbow " or "lateral epicondylosis"
Tendons on the front of forearm or palm side of hand originate from the inside of elbow and usually the culprit in "Golfers elbow" or "Medial epicondylosis"
Common treatments include rest, icing and using the common counterforce back available over the counter.
If these problems linger on for a while one must seek the medical attention especially people who work in field like construction, sportsman or any other foeld requiring repetitive movment as it results in continuous wearing and tearing of structure.
Cortisine injections, PRP(plasma rich) injections or saline injections in the inflammed site are the common treatments to resolve symptoms with rehab. of injured structures.
Certain cases there might be surgery requires to clean the area with reaatching the tendons and in those cases long term rehab is required.
Key role of a therapist
1. Establishing a good history of problem to identify correct cause of pain. All patient are different and therapist should understand their need , occupation and goals during evaluation.
2. Detailed physical evaluation to understand symptoms
3. Establishing a treatment plan to help lead better life without apin and discomfort
Therapy is focused upon reducing inflammation at elbow region and improving function.
Therapist utilizes different modalities i.e ulrasound therapy, moist heat, TENS etc along with manual therapy i.e stretching, soft tissue mobilizations, specialized mobilization techniques etc. Therapist is also responsible for proper use of brace, band, taping etc.
Strengtheing in these cases should be done carefully as sometimes it can worsen symptoms and pathlogy.

IS YOUR HEADACHE…A PAIN IN THE NECK?

Posted on November 14, 2010 at 11:02 PM Comments comments (0)
THE LINK BETWEEN POSTURE AND HEADACHES
¨Many of us have poor posture.
¨This can result in neck pain.                  
¨Pain originating from the neck can, in some cases, cause one of two problems:
-Pain can travel down the nerves of the neck into the arms.
-Pain can travel upwards causing headaches.
 
There are several causes of headaches, but tension in the neck muscles is a common factor.
¨Most computer users round their shoulders and hold their head too far forward.
¨This results in aches and pains following long browsing / work sessions.
¨Spending too much time in one position, particularly the 'rounded, hunched forward' position can leave you fatigued, achy and rubbing your temples at
the end of the day.
 
What our specialized therapist can do?
 
Exercise therapy is a proven solution for headaches that stem from the neck. 
After an evaluation, we prescribe stretches and exercises to get you back to full functional levels. In some cases, medication may be necessary to help manage
the pain. In most cases of neck pain and associated headaches, therapy can help reduce your pain.There is a potential to decrease or eliminate the need for pain medication.
Pain relieving modalities, soft tissue moblization, heat & cold therapy, special exercises of neck and surrounding region all prescribed by a specialist dealing with these problem could resulve your problem in a short time.
 
Home Remedies:
If you are experiencing neck pain and headaches due to bad posture habits, try these simple tips:
nIf you hold the phone under one ear for too long or carry a heavy bag on one shoulder for a long time, TAKE BREAKS to eliminate the pain and switch sides at regular intervals of 10-15 minutes.
If you sit at a computer for a long time, get up and walk around frequently or, at least, change your head position. Keep your head and neck upright as much as possible by conducting regular, postural 'self checks'.
If you have been injured in an accident or are suffering from an injury, avoid hurting yourself further.
 
Call us today at 7086878768 , if you have any questions or comments.

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