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From The Blog

  • Cycling and Carpal Tunnel Syndrome
  • Ashley's Story
  • Three Stages of Subacromial Impingement

Cycling and Carpal Tunnel Syndrome

By Josie Vanwey, OTR/L

  carpaltunnel You might not know it from the weather, but spring is here, folks! Time to resume your outdoor activities...or take up something new. If you’re looking for something to do outdoors that’s fun and great exercise, might I suggest cycling? The advantages of cycling are endless. It burns calories like crazy. It works your entire body. It’s easy on your joints, especially compared to walking or running. It’s a great cardio workout, which improves your heart health significantly. Plus, if you use your bike for transportation, you’re saving money and helping the environment at the same time…what’s not to love? Well, okay, I can think of one thing not to love and that’s the possibility of carpal tunnel syndrome. Carpal Tunnel Syndrome (or CTS) is a compression of the median nerve at the wrist that cyclists often experience. Injury can occur when a cyclist holds the handlebars on top and applies pressure directly on the median nerve. Symptoms include numbness and tingling in the thumb, index, middle and ring fingers and weakness of the hand. hand glove Although the symptoms of CTS usually resolve quickly once you stop cycling for a short period of time, wearing padded gloves can help minimize your symptoms and injury. The padding absorbs the shocks and jolts from the road, limiting the stress transmitted to your hands. Plus, the padding helps relieve some of the direct pressure placed on your wrist and the carpal tunnel.And even if

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April is Occupational Therapy Month, and while most have heard of this profession, many do not understand what it is or how it differs from physical therapy. To get a better idea of what occupational therapy is and its benefits, we spoke with one of our occupational therapists, Brad Thomas, and his patient, Ashley Peterson, about her amazing story.

Ashley’s Story- A Look into Occupational Therapy

Ashley and Brad performing Occupational Therapy On March 5, 2013, sixteen year old Ashley Peterson was involved in a horrific car accident- hit by a hydroplaning vehicle which could have taken her life. What saved her was the airbag, though it broke multiple bones in her elbow in the process, including the ulna, radius, and humerus, and severely damaging her ulna and median nerves. Surgeons refer to an injury like hers as the “Terrible Triad” and warned Ashley that she may never return to 100% range of motion.  Unable to move her right forearm, hand, or fingers at all, Ashley found herself at the beginning of a very long road to recovery. Ashley first came to see Brad Thomas, OT, CHT, at BenchMark Physical Therapy’s Cleveland, TN clinic a few days after her first surgery. Her elbow was now held together with 2 plates and over 20 screws allowing her a total range of motion of only 20 degrees. Being right handed, she found herself unable to perform the most basic activities including bathing, writing, or feeding herself. “Ashley is very independent and really wanted to get back to doing

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Three Stages of Subacromial Impingement

By Matt Carbone, PT, DPT, OCS, CIMT Shoulder pain is a common complaint that physicians will see in their medical clinics, upwards of 33%.1 The most common cause for shoulder pain is subacromial impingement syndrome (SIS) but there has been limited consensus about diagnostic criteria.1 The term “impingement syndrome” was popularized by Neer in 1972 as a clinical diagnosis where the rotator cuff was pathologically compressed against the anterior structures of the coracoacromial arch, the anterior third of the acromion, the coracoacromial ligament, and the AC joint. Irritation of the rotator cuff compromises its function during overhead activities. This can further exacerbate the impingement shoulder impingement quote process. Neer described three stages of subacromial impingement: Stage 1 – inflammation, edema, and hemorrhage. Stage 2 – cuff fibrosis, partial rotator cuff tear. Stage 3 – full thickness tear, osteophytes, and tendon rupture.2 Common complaints with SIS include shoulder pain, weakness, and possible paresthesias in the upper arm. It is very important to rule out other causes of these symptoms, such as cervical spine pathology. When subacromial impingement is suspected, it is necessary to differentiate primary from secondary impingement. Correct identification of the etiology of the problem is essential for successful treatment outcomes. Primary subacromial impingement is the result of an abnormal mechanical relationship between the rotator cuff and the coracoacromial arch. Presentation includes patients usually older than 40 years, complaint of anterior shoulder and upper lateral arm pain, an inability to sleep on the affected side and complaints of shoulder weakness. Overhead

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