You wish your chronic neck pain would improve, but right now, it's part of your everyday life. At Virgin Islands Orthopaedics and Medical Specialists in St. Thomas and St. Croix, Dr. Jeffrey Chase and Dr. Carmen Quinones offer real remedies for neck pain. Simple changes can improve or eliminate your discomfort.
One-sided, two-sided, or down the back
Neck pain varies in location and intensity. Some people have some soreness in the morning while others experience more serious pain and a limited range of motion throughout the day.
Some causes are so minor you just don't think of them as problems, but they are. Others relate to the aging process or injury. Whatever the case, your orthopedic surgeon can help.
Your consultation with Dr. Chase or Dr. Quinones
Come to our St. Croix or St. Thomas office to talk it over. Describe your symptoms in detail.
For instance, when does your neck pain start? How would you characterize it? Is it sharp, dull, throbbing? Is tingling or numbness involved? Is it constant, or do you feel better when you move around? Your answers will help the doctor arrive at a diagnosis, along with his physical exam, X-rays, and other digital imaging he deems pertinent.
Your treatment plan depends on the causes
Dr. Chase or Dr. Quinones will talk with you about his conclusions and your treatment plan. Most people do well with home care and physical therapy. Injury from an auto accident (whiplash) or sports or disease processes, such as arthritis or degenerative vertebral discs, cause substantial pain and impact function, says Harvard Health.
However, simpler factors cause neck pain, too. Here are some examples and ways to counter them:
- Stress and the resulting stiff muscles (try prayer, mediation, or other relaxation techniques)
- Poor posture (don't hunch over, but consciously sit and stand straight)
- Keeping a keyboard too low on your desk or lap (eye level is best)
- Remaining sedentary during the workday (get up at least twice an hour to refocus your eyes and stretch your neck, back, shoulders and legs)
- Lifting objects which are too heavy for you (it's OK to wait until someone can assist you)
- Piling up bed pillows (sleep with one only)
- Poor eyesight (if you require glasses, wear them and avoid craning your neck to see)
Move well, and feel well
You can manage your neck pain. Find out more about it by contacting Dr. Jeffrey Chase or Dr. Carmen Quinones at Virgin Islands Orthopaedics and Medical Specialists. Choose either our St. Thomas office at (340) 714-2845 or our St. Croix location at (340) 692-5000.
If you're suffering from the pain and immobility of a meniscus tear in your knee, you want relief. At Virgin Islands Orthopaedics and Medical Specialists in St. Croix and St. Thomas, Dr. Jeffrey Chase can address that knee problem accurately. Recover well, and enjoy the long-term function.
What is a meniscus?
Actually, each of your knees has two of them, one on the medial side of the knee and the other on the lateral side. They provide cushioning for the space between your femur (thigh bone) and tibia (shin bone). These structures are subject to every day stresses from walking, squatting, and going up and downstairs. For the athlete, each meniscus takes on tremendous twisting pressures with sports such as football and skiing.
For younger people--even children--meniscus injuries are sudden tears which cause pain, stiffness, and immobility. Tears may be severe; however, because the tissue is youthful and more pliable, it heals quickly and completely.
Older patients at Virgin Islands Orthopaedics and Medical Specialists in St. Croix and St. Thomas often present with more fragmented tears, and the precipitating incident may be something as simple as squatting down to retrieve something off the floor, reports John Hopkins Health. Also, some senior patients are unaware they have a torn meniscus, but the injury shows up on X-ray or MRI as Dr. Chase investigates another orthopedic problem.
Along with a meniscus tear, the orthopedic surgeon may see co-existing arthritis, a deterioration of the articular cartilage in the knee. However, many patients have no arthritic changes while still others may have arthritis unrelated to their meniscus tear.
Treating a meniscus tear
If you have this knee injury, your treatment and recovery depend on your age and the extent of your injury. If you're like most patients, you won't require surgical repair (arthroscopic surgery with a thin scope and small incisions). You may do well with rest, ice, compression, and elevation--the traditional RICE protocol.
For all patients, treatment plans include pain control and physical therapy to promote healing and return to normal daily activities. For surgical patients, crutches, immobilization with a knee brace, physical therapy, and limitations on activities, such as driving and sports, vary according to the nature of the surgery.
It's your knee
Let us help you recover from a meniscus repair. At Virgin Islands Orthopaedics and Medical Specialists in St. Thomas and St. Croix, expect outstanding care and an excellent outcome. For an appointment with Dr. Jeffrey Chase, please contact our St. Croix office at (340) 692-5000. For the St. Thomas location, phone (340) 714-2845.
Here’s how to tackle your rheumatoid arthritis joint pain
Rheumatoid arthritis is one of the most common types of arthritis, affecting around 1.3 million Americans. Rheumatoid arthritis most often develops in women between the ages of 30 and 60. While there is no cure for RA, our St. Thomas and St. Croix orthopedic team can help you manage your symptoms to slow the progression of this chronic disease. At Virgin Islands Orthopaedics and Medical Specialists, Dr. Mary Olsen is here for you.
Here are some ways to get your rheumatoid arthritis symptoms under control.
Catch Some Nightly ZZZs
Getting quality sleep every night is important for everyone but particularly necessary for those with RA. Not getting enough sleep could worsen pain and make getting around even harder. You should aim to get at least eight hours of sleep each night. If you are having trouble getting quality sleep, talk with your St. Thomas or St. Croix doctor about treatment options and ways to improve your nightly bedtime routine for better-quality sleep.
You may be surprised to discover that regular exercise could help to alleviate some of the joint pain and stiffness you’re experiencing. Of course, you want to choose exercises that won’t put additional stress on the joints. Getting regular exercise can also improve sleep and reduce daytime fatigue. Look for low-impact exercise options like biking and swimming, as well as resistance training, to support healthy, strong muscles.
Eat a Healthy Diet
What you eat can also contribute to inflammation and worsening joint pain. That’s why you must be eating a diet that is rich in anti-inflammatories and nutrients. This includes a variety of different colorful vegetables, spices (e.g. turmeric), fruits, and even yogurt. You want to avoid processed foods, as well as sugar. Not sure what to eat to improve your health? Talk with your doctor.
Take Your Medication
There are certain prescription medications on the market that can help alleviate joint pain and stiffness associated with RA. One of those medications is methotrexate and hydroxychloroquine. These medications can also slow the progression of the disease. If you are dealing with painful, tender hands and feet, some medications can help you get your RA under control.
If you are having trouble getting your rheumatoid arthritis symptoms under control, the orthopedic specialists at Virgin Islands Orthopaedics and Medical Specialists can help. We have offices in St. Thomas and St. Croix to ensure that you get the comprehensive orthopedic treatment you need. Call Dr. Mary Olsen at (340) 714-2845 or (340) 692-5000 for an evaluation.
Keeping your heart healthy is one of the most vital indicators of overall health in the body. It can be as simple as the routine performance of movements that most people can do. Let the board-certified specialists at Virgin Islands Orthopaedics and Sports Medicine in Saint Thomas and Saint Croix be your hub for education concerning exercises for heart health. Drs. Jeffrey Chase and Ahmet Sayan are here for you.
Cardiovascular exercise is critical to proper blood oxygenation, as it increases the blood circulation and encourages deep breathing. Let’s discuss some exercises that improve heart health and performance:
Walking briskly for 30 minutes a day, 3-4 times a week is a terrific way to get your heart rate up and the blood moving through your body. For an added challenge, go for a hike in the mountains.
Throw yourself a party
Turn on some music at home and dance! Exercising your heart does not have to be a grueling job. Dance while you make dinner or clean your home.
Go for a run
Running is a surefire way to work out your heart. Ensure your running shoes fit properly and that you are well hydrated before your run.
Move some weights around
Weight training with challenging weights is a good way to get the heart going. Weightlifting also encourages aggressive fat loss, so your heart benefits in multiple ways.
Take a dip
Swimming is another fun way to tone the body, exercise your heart, and get your blood circulating. Whether it's in a pool or natural surroundings, swimming increases the heart rate and requires you to focus on your breath.
Need more info on how to incorporate positive changes and goals to your workouts? Contact Drs. Jeffrey Chase and Ahmey Sayan at Virgin Islands Orthopaedics and Sports Medicine. Reach our beautiful Saint Thomas office at (340) 714-2845. We also serve Saint Croix at (340) 692-5000.
Activities we love -- like sports -- can be the highlight of our lives, but often that means we sustain injuries doing those things. The care team at Virgin Island Orthopedics and Medical Specialists understands this and endeavors to bring you quality care while you recover from your sports injury. Just talk to Drs. Jeffrey Chase and Ahmet Sayan at our St. Croix or St. Thomas locations.
Some tips for recovery
- Experts at Harvard Medical school encourage prevention as the best defense from a sports injury. Wearing headgear, mouthguards, goggles, or anything else that is required for your particular sport should be your number one priority.
- Wear your braces if you need and have them. Injuries often leave tissues stretched or torn, and braces allow stability in the injured area without allowing the body to move too much.
- Get plenty of rest. Taking it easy and even including naps during the day help the body recover faster than requiring the body to perform on a sleep deficit.
- Hydrate your body. Drinking enough water allows more cushioning through the joints and helps to reduce swelling in damaged muscle tissue.
- Take it easy. Do not try to do too many things, especially when you’ve first injured yourself. Moving the body part may cause tenderness or outright pain. If this is the case, stop the activity and try again at another time.
- Ice the damage. Ice helps to stave off swelling, heat, and pain that can make the site of injury feel worse.
- Keep an open mind and an optimistic perspective. Working with your practitioner means communication and consistency. There may be exercises that are harder than others or routines that are harder to stick with, but when your body is fully healed, you will be happy to have done them.
Another great way to recover from a sports injury is physical therapy at Virgin Island Orthopedics and Medical Specialists. Contact Drs. Jeffrey Chase and Ahmet Sayan in St. Thomas (340) 714-2845 and St. Croix at (340) 692-5000 to schedule an appointment.
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