Words of Wellness

Not on Equal Footing

Most people have legs of unequal length. if their “leg-length discrepancy” is large enough, it can be a source of back pain. Generally speaking, a difference in leg length greater than 5 millimeters (1/4 inch) can cause lower back pain, while discrepancies greater than 9 millimeters results in a 6-fold greater likelihood of experiencing lower […]

Young Athletes’ Back and Neck Injuries

Fortunately back and neck injuries are less common among adolescents and high school athletes. Most injuries consist of ligament sprains caused by trauma, overuse, improper body mechanics, poor technique, insufficient conditioning, or not stretching enough. These kinds of injuries usually cause back or neck pain while young athletes are active and performing, and subside with […]

Heading In The Right Direction

The U.S. Soccer Federation bans players under the age of 10 from heading the ball and also forbids heading during practice for young soccer players ages 11 to 13 who play in leagues under its purview. This ban cam because of an ongoing class-action lawsuit filed by a group of parents and young players, who […]

Embarrassing Pain

There is pain involving a nerve that some feel is so embarrassing to talk about that its name is derived from the Latin word for “shame.” The “pudendal” nerve lies deep in the pelvis and travels from the sacral area and later separates into three branches: one going to the anal rectal area, one to […]

Treating Degenerative Changes

As we grow older, the intervertebral discs, which normally cushion the spinal bone (vertebrae) from impact, being to shrink, tear, and bulge/rupture. These degenerative changes, which can also result from injury, often give rise to pain stemming from osteoarthritis and spinal stenosis (narrowing of the open spaces within the spine). As increasing pressure is placed […]

Hip Arthritis in Hockey Players

Over the past decade, there has been a noticeable increase in the number of young athletes and weekend warriors who experience hip pain. Ice hockey players, in particular, have been found to be suffering from a condition known as “femoral acetabular impingement” (FAI), which is believed to be a major cause of early osteoarthritis  of […]

Gender Differences in Spines

New research casts a light on the differences between boys’ and girls’ vertebrae (the small bones that make up the spine), which are present at birth. When researchers used magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) to measure newborns’ vertebrae, they found that the females’ cross sectional dimensions were 10.6 percent smaller, on average, than the boys’ dimensions. […]

On The Move

There was once a time when people suffering from back pain were told that they would benefit from bed rest. Now we know that this prescription does more harm than good. Unlike a broken bone that must be rested until it heals, an aching back is not helped by atrophying muscles and weakening soft tissue […]

Help For Fibromyalgia Patients

Fibromyalgia is a chronic condition characterized by pervasive pain above and below the waist and on both sides of the body, as well as in the skull, spine, rib cage, and the bones in the throat and ears. Diagnosis is predicated on the experience of tenderness or pain in 11 to 18 recognized “tenderness points”. […]

Running out of Space

Nearly half of Americans aged 60 years and older suffer from “spinal stenosis” This narrowing of the spaces between the spine’s vertebrae is a common cause of back pain. As the bones of the spinal column undergo degenerative changes (such as osteoarthritis), bony overgrowths appear, ligaments harden, discs shrink and distort, and joints break down. […]