Why do your hands, knees, back or shoulders hurt? Is it arthritis? Many people in the US Virgin Islands suffer from it and need relief from their symptoms. At Virgin Island Orthopaedics & Medical Specialists, Dr. Jeffrey Chase and his team provide a wide range of physical therapies, pain management, and orthopaedic services to increase your comfort, mobility, and function. Would you like to ease those arthritis symptoms?
What is arthritis?
The National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Disease defines arthritis simply as joint inflammation. Osteoarthritis is the kind most people know as it is related to the wear and tear of the aging process. It causes inflammation and pain in the hands, knees, hips, and other joints as the articular cartilage on bone ends wears away.
The other familiar kind is rheumatoid arthritis, an autoimmune disorder. RA patients may be quite young and suffer extensive joint pain, fatigue and even fever.
Who gets arthritis?
Millions of Americans struggle with the pain and stiffness typical of arthritis. Some even require special anti-inflammatory drugs, joint replacements, physical therapy and more to improve function, ease pain, and maintain mobility. Older people, athletes, and those with a genetic pre-disposition to this condition suffer from a wide range of symptoms.
How to ease your symptoms
At Virgin Island Orthopaedics & Medical Specialists, Dr. Chase will listen to your symptoms and perform the tests necessary to pinpoint the diagnosis of arthritis. Treatment depends on your particular type of arthritis, overall health condition and other factors.
However, any patient can benefit from basic pain management and joint function strategies such as:
- Maintaining a healthy weight to limit pressure and wear and tear on the articular cartilage
- Ibuprofen or other over the counter medications
- Routine movement to increase blood flow, maintain muscle mass, and increase mobility and range of motion
- Physical therapy
- Supportive devices such as splints
- Assistive devices such as canes and walkers
- Ergonomic chairs and floor mats
- Stress management
- Resting and protecting your joints (exercise sensibly with low-impact activities such as cycling, swimming, and walking)
- Tracking your symptoms and reporting them to Dr. Chase
Tracking symptoms is key to managing them. Note the quality of your pain: stabbing, crushing, tingling, etc. Tell Dr. Chase how it impacts your work and life at home. Pay attention to the location of your pain, if it changes location and what may increase or relieve it.
Life with arthritis is not always easy, but it is manageable. At Virgin Island Orthopaedics & Medical Specialists, Dr. Jeffrey Chase and his staff have the expertise and compassion to give you the care you and your arthritis need for a better life. For an in-office consultation, please contact one of our two convenient locations. In St. Croix, call (340) 692-5000, and for St. Thomas, phone (340) 714-2845.
Your best self stems from a healthy lifestyle—one that includes proper dietary habits and regular exercise. Additionally, you must pay attention to what your body may be telling you. For instance, if you have chest pain, you should contact Dr. Ahmet Sayan, your cardiologist at Virgin Islands Orthopaedics & Medical Specialists, to learn what the cause may be.
Is is a heart attack?
Medical News Today reports that about a million Americans have a heart attack every year. Accordingly, always seek help if you have symptoms of:
- Chest pain that spreads to the jaw, back, and shoulder
- Shortness of breath
- Fast respirations
- Extreme fatigue
- Rapid pulse
- Lightheaded feeling
The American Heart Association advises that anyone experiencing acute chest pain and any number of the above symptoms should call 911 immediately for emergency care by a paramedic and transport to the nearest hospital. Dr. Sayan and his team at Virgin Island Orthopaedics and Medical Specialists provide the best in after-hospital care for cardiovascular events and ongoing issues.
Is it something else?
Your body is complex, and chest pain symptoms may not be cardiac in nature. However, whatever the origin, your symptoms should be reported and investigated. Possible causes could be:
- Broken ribs, collapsed lung, or strained rib cage muscles after a fall
- GERD (acid reflux), stomach ulcers or pancreatitis
- Issues involving the lining and function of the esophagus (food pipe)
- Panic attacks
- Hiatal hernia (protrusion of the stomach through the diaphragm)
- Pneumonia and secondary pleurisy (inflammation of the sac around the lungs)
- Angina (pain related to the narrowed blood vessels of cardiovascular disease)
- Myocarditis (inflammation of the cardiac muscle)
Remember that sudden onset chest pain is almost always dangerous and concerning. So, if this happens to you, go to the nearest hospital ER for evaluation.
At Virgin Islands Orthopaedics and Medical Specialists...
Expect prompt, kind, care with the latest in diagnostic testing and techniques. Dr. Sayan is our in-house cardiologist, and Dr. Jeffrey Chase is our orthopaedic surgeon. We look after patients of all ages and deliver on-site PT and imaging. Contact one of our two offices for a consultation. For St. Thomas, phone (340) 714-2845, and for St. Croix, dial (340) 692-5000.
There are several reasons why people end up suffering from lower back pain, whether it be a result of lifting something heavy or the factor of a condition such as arthritis. Whatever the cause, this is a common condition and many Americans experience it at some point in their life. Not all lower back pain is serious but if you were injured and have certain symptoms (numbness, weakness, or tingling in the legs) you'll need to call the doctor. Here at Virgin Island Orthopaedics and Medical Specialists in St.Thomas and St. Croix, treat these issues with a variety of approaches—read on to learn a few.
Lower Back Pain Management
- Try icing your back within the first 24 to 48 hours after an injury, for this helps reduces inflammation. You can also switch over to using heat pads, but remove it after 20 minutes to let your skin rest.
- Continuous movement such as walking, swimming, biking, and other activities help, but you need to avoid overexerting yourself; therefore, ask your physicians about which exercises are safe and suitable for you.
- Stretching, sitting up straight, and taking occasional breaks from your desk every 20 minutes.
- Create a smart workspace that doesn't require hunching forward to reach your mouse/keyboard or see your computer monitor. Find the proper chair that supports your lower back and enables your feet to stay planted on the floor.
- Women tend to wear high heels which create an unstable posture, so opt for flats instead of four-inch pumps to avoid pain that may develop in the lower spine.
- Using over-the-counter pain relievers and anti-inflammatory drugs like aspirin, ibuprofen, and naproxen may help reduce back pain.
If you would like to learn more about lower back pain management, call one of Virgin Island Orthopaedics and Medical Specialists' offices today:
"About 1 of 3 U.S. adults—or about 75 million people—have high blood pressure. Only about half (54%) of these people have their high blood pressure under control," says the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Fortunately for those dealing with this condition, here at Virgin Island Orthopedics and Medical Specialists in St. Thomas and St. Croix, our physicians make it their mission to help those dealing with high blood pressure and hypertension.
Here are some FAQs on the topic:
What is high blood pressure/hypertension?
"Hypertension is the most common, costly, and preventable cardiovascular disease risk factor," according to the US National Library of Medicine National Institutes of Health.
Blood pressure normally fluctuates throughout the day, but the problem is when it doesn't come down. This increases your risk of having a stroke, heart attack, and other problems.
How do you measure your blood pressure?
Patients generally use a blood pressure monitor to accomplish this. When taking a reading, there are two numbers: systolic and diastolic. The systolic number indicates how hard the blood pushes when the heart is pumping, while the diastolic number shows how hard the blood pushes between each heartbeat.
What causes high blood pressure?
When it comes to hypertension, there often isn't a single cause. Instead, there are a number of contributing factors, including being overweight, family history, age, race, not being physically active, using tobacco, consuming too much sodium, and consuming too little potassium in your diet.
How to deal with hypertension?
If your doctor says you have high blood pressure, you need to get it under control. This often requires making a few lifestyle changes, including:
- You need to eat a diet that's healthy for your heart, so eat fresh fruit and vegetables, and limit trans fats.
- Exercise is important, about 30 minutes a day, for everyone, especially if you suffer from obesity.
- Medicine and reducing stress will help manage blood pressure effectively.
If you have any more questions about hypertension, contact one of our office in St. Thomas and St. Croix:
- St. Thomas: (340) 714-2845
- St. Croix: (340) 692-5000
When you take a visit to your physician, they will generally take a reading of your blood pressure. This measurement shows how hard your arteries are working to pump blood through your body. Paying close attention to these results is important, for high readings are classic warning signs of lead to heart disease and other serious conditions. Here at Virgin Islands Orthopaedics & Medical Specialists in St. Thomas and St. Croix, your cardiologist, Dr. Ahmet Sayan, watches this vital sign to keep you in optimal health. Read on to learn more!
The best blood pressure
Ideally, your blood pressure should be 120/80. While occasional variations are OK, consistently higher readings warrant monitoring at home and with your physician in his St Thomas or St. Croix office. Unfortunately, the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) reports that 75 million American adults have hypertension, a condition that has devastating effects on your cardiovascular health.
Common problems stemming from high blood pressure are:
- Heart attack
- Congestive heart failure
- Kidney disease
- Blood clots
- Peripheral artery disease
As such, hypertension cannot be ignored. Fortunately, Dr. Sayan can help you to successfully manage your heart health for years and years to come.
Symptoms of hypertension
Also called "the silent killer," hypertension may have no symptoms at all. Although some people may experience headaches or GI problems (e.g. vomiting) according to the CDC, these signs are generally the exception rather than the rule.
Managing your blood pressure
Some cases of hypertension are related to inactivity, weight problems, smoking, and a sedentary lifestyle. Others result from block arteries, heart damage, and heredity. While you cannot do anything about genetic factors, you can modify lifestyle issues and treat other underlying diseases.
If you have high blood pressure, Dr. Sayan may recommend some of the following treatments based on your unique case:
- Medications such as diuretics or beta-blockers (always take as directed)
- A low salt diet
- Routine exercise (just a brisk 30 minute walk several times a week works wonders)
- Smoking cessation
Additionally, stress plays a significant role in cardiovascular diseases, including hypertension. The American Heart Association recommends learning relaxation techniques to control stress and lower your blood pressure.
Do you have high blood pressure?
Find out with a routine check-up at Virgin Islands Orthopaedics & Medical Specialists. Call either location today to set up an appointment—for St. Croix, phone (340) 692-5000, and for St. Thomas, call (340) 714-2845.
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