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Treatment For An Abdominal Aortic Aneurysm

11860 Vista Del Sol, Ste. 128 Treatment For An Abdominal Aortic Aneurysm
Senior man showing stomach ache pain to doctor in clinic
An abdominal aortic aneurysm refers to an enlargement of the abdominal aorta. If the blood vessel is enlarged and starts to leak blood or rupture, it will cause severe abdominal and lower back pain. This is a serious medical emergency that necessitates emergency surgery. Unfortunately, there is no way to reverse the damage. A prominent symptom from a rupture is severe, persistent low back pain, and pain in and around the abdomen. Treatment for an abdominal aortic aneurysm depends on the possible complications that could develop. Approaches for treatment:
  • Nonsurgical treatments like anti-biotics calcium channel blockers and exercise along with monitoring are used for individuals that have a low risk of rupture.
  • If an aneurysm is not found until it becomes an emergency, then surgery to repair the ruptured artery is absolutely necessary. If ruptured or there is a high risk of rupturing is considered an emergency.
  • If a rupturing aneurysm has been diagnosed, some treatment/management will be implemented to prevent severe/fatal bleeding.
11860 Vista Del Sol, Ste. 128 Treatment For An Abdominal Aortic Aneurysm
 

Cardiac

For low-risk cases, lifestyle changes and possible medication/s may be recommended to slow the development. Small aneurysms are monitored using ultrasound. This can be every 6 to 12 months depending on the size and growth rate of the artery. Medications for lowering blood pressure and cholesterol could be prescribed. This is to limit the amount of plaque buildup in the aorta and reduce any pressure on the arterial walls. Quitting smoking and removing tobacco altogether whether dip, chew, vape is a significant action an individual can do to minimize the risk of aortic rupture. Other lifestyle changes involve maintaining a healthy diet and regular exercise will help lower blood pressure and cholesterol levels decreasing the chance of rupture.

Surgery

Surgical treatment when necessary is to stop a rupture if leaking blood or to prevent a rupture. Surgery requires replacing the damaged portion of the aorta with a stent-graft. This is an artificial artery made from a high-tech mesh/fabric. There are two standard surgical treatments:

Open Repair

Open repair is the most common surgical treatment. It takes the enlarged portion of the aorta removes it and replaces it with a stent-graft. Open surgery repair consists of the following:
  • The incision is made in the abdomen at the site of the aneurysm.
  • The aorta gets clamped with the blood temporarily blocked from flowing through the damaged portion.
  • The damaged part is removed.
  • A tube graft is placed where the damaged portion was.
If the damage was not severe and does not require the removal and complete replacement, then less invasive options will be offered.  
11860 Vista Del Sol, Ste. 128 Treatment For An Abdominal Aortic Aneurysm
 

Endovascular Aortic Aneurysm Repair

EVAR endovascular aneurysm repair surgery is a minimally invasive procedure. There is no need for a large abdominal incision or removal of the damaged portion of the artery. This procedure does not require blood flow stoppage, which places less stress on the heart. Endovascular surgery involves:
  • A fluoroscopy or live X-ray is used. This is so the surgeon can look at the repair, and guide the stent into place.
  • 2 small incisions are made in the groin.
  • A catheter is inserted into the femoral artery in the groin and guided to the abdominal aorta.
  • Through the catheter, the stent is guided to the aneurysm.
  • Once it reaches the aneurysm, it is compressed and closed.
  • The stent is placed in position, and the wireframe is expanded to fit the artery.
  • The stent is sewn/secured into place at both ends.
  • Once in place, the blood gets redirected from the enlarged area and flows only through the stent-graft. This takes the pressure off the artery’s walls and allows for size reduction over time, and decreases the risk of rupture.
The procedure is not an option for individuals with an aorta that cannot be accessed safely through the femoral arteries. Or if the artery is severely damaged that the aneurysm portion needs to be replaced. And if the aneurysm is too big or complex where an open repair is a more favorable option.

Follow Up

Follow-up monitoring is necessary after any aortic aneurysm surgical procedure. This is to ensure the stent works and the aorta is functioning without a high risk of rupture. Individuals will be advised to maintain a healthier heart and cardiovascular system. A surgeon/doctor will suggest:
  • Diet adjustments
  • Regular exercise
  • Quitting smoking/tobacco intake
  • Taking cholesterol and blood pressure medication
  • Chiropractic/Physical therapy for any spinal misalignment, herniation, sciatic nerve compression back pain relief.

Lower Back Pain Relief

 

 

Dr. Alex Jimenez’s Blog Post Disclaimer

The scope of our information is limited to chiropractic, musculoskeletal, physical medicines, wellness, and sensitive health issues and/or functional medicine articles, topics, and discussions. We use functional health & wellness protocols to treat and support care for injuries or disorders of the musculoskeletal system. Our posts, topics, subjects, and insights cover clinical matters, issues, and topics that relate and support directly or indirectly our clinical scope of practice.* Our office has made a reasonable attempt to provide supportive citations and has identified the relevant research study or studies supporting our posts. We also make copies of supporting research studies available to the board and or the public upon request. We understand that we cover matters that require an additional explanation as to how it may assist in a particular care plan or treatment protocol; therefore, to further discuss the subject matter above, please feel free to ask Dr. Alex Jimenez or contact us at 915-850-0900. The provider(s) Licensed in Texas& New Mexico*

Abdominal Aneurysm Can Present With Sciatica and Low Back Pain

11860 Vista Del Sol, Ste. 128 Abdominal Aneurysm Can Present With Sciatica and Low Back Pain
Man having chiropractic back adjustment. Physioterapy, osteopathy, alternative medicine pain relief rehabilitation
An abdominal aortic aneurysm is an enlarging of the lower portion of the aortic artery that resides in the abdomen. The aorta is the body’s main artery that supplies blood to the body and stretches from the heart down into and through the abdomen. The abdominal aorta is the part that sits within the abdomen. It is below the kidneys and in close proximity to the front of the spine. Because of this closeness sudden intense pain can be felt in the lower back along with sciatica symptoms.  
11860 Vista Del Sol, Ste. 128 Abdominal Aneurysm Can Present With Sciatica and Low Back Pain
 

Abdominal Aorta Function

Its function is to deliver blood from the heart throughout the body. It circulates blood down through the chest and abdomen. Smaller arteries branch off the artery to the different organs and systems of the body.

Enlargement/Weakening

If it becomes weak or expands in size, the condition is known as an aortic aneurysm. This condition can cause severe abdominal pain, back pain, sciatica and can lead to artery leakage or rupture. This is when it becomes an emergency. Being the largest blood vessel in the body means that a rupture can cause life-threatening bleeding. Aneurysms can develop anywhere on the artery, but most occur in the abdomen portion. Depending on the size and growth rate, treatment/therapies can vary from observation to emergency surgery. Abdominal aneurysms usually progress slowly without symptoms, making them difficult to detect. However, some abdominal aneurysms never rupture. They can start small and remain the same size while others can expand over time, and others faster.

Rupture

A weakened aorta can develop a leak known as a rupture. Blood can also begin to accumulate and pool up between layers in the arterial walls can also lead to rupture known as a dissection. Internal bleeding is the primary complication of an abdominal aneurysm. Loss of blood is considered a potentially fatal medical emergency. Mortality rates increase when the artery leaks. The risk for rupture depends on the:

Size

Aneurysms that are smaller than 5 cm in diameter are considered a low risk for rupture. Aneurysms larger than 5 cm are considered high risk. The size is often the best predictor for predicting the chance of rupture.

Growth Rate

Expansion of more than half a centimeter over 6 months is considered accelerated growth and is a high risk. A faster growth rate has been seen in individuals that smoke or have high blood pressure. Abdominal pain, lower back pain, sciatica, or other symptoms usually do not present until the artery has ruptured. However, a significantly expanded aneurysm, symptoms similar to a rupture can occur.  
11860 Vista Del Sol, Ste. 128 Abdominal Aneurysm Can Present With Sciatica and Low Back Pain
 

Symptoms

In most cases, the aneurysm develops slowly with no symptoms or minor symptoms like a nagging/gnawing or throbbing sensation in or around the abdomen. This type of aneurysm can be detected from a standard physical exam or from the monitoring of another condition. Symptoms depend on the location and can include some combination of the following:
  • Deep, constant pain in the abdomen or on the side. It could also be a stabbing pain deep inside that is felt between the sternum and the belly button. The pain can be continuous with no relief from rest or adjusting positions. Severe pain can cause individuals to bend over and down.
  • Difficulty standing or the ability to straighten the upper body.
  • Low back pain caused by the abdominal pain radiating/spreading out into the lower spine from the aorta’s closeness to the spine. The pain can also spread to the groin, pelvis, and legs.
  • Sciatica symptoms typically come from low back pain.
  • A pulse near or around the bellybutton. Tenderness, along with a pulsing sensation can be felt. The pulse can be felt through the skin and could be sensitive to touch or pressure.
  • Blood loss will result in low blood pressure, known as hypotension. This causes lightheadedness, dizziness, nausea/vomiting, blurred vision, and confusion. Symptoms are exacerbated when standing generating the feeling for the need to sit or lie down.
  • Shock symptoms from the internal bleeding. This includes:
  1. Sudden and rapid heartbeat
  2. Shallow breathing
  3. Clammy skin
  4. Cold sweats
  5. General weakness
  6. Confusion
  7. Agitation
  8. Anxiety
  9. Loss of consciousness
 

Causes

Various causes can be involved in developing an abdominal aneurysm, including:
  • Hardening of the arteries known as atherosclerosis. It happens when fat along with other substances build up on the lining of blood vessel/s.
  • High blood pressure can damage and weaken the walls of the aorta.
  • Blood vessel diseases can cause blood vessel inflammation.
  • Aortic infection is rare but a bacterial or fungal infection could cause an abdominal aneurysm.
  • Trauma like being in an automobile accident can cause an aneurysm.

Risk Factors

The pathology principally stays asymptomatic until a rupture occurs. This pathology affects mostly men with quite a few risk factors. Risk factors include:
  • Men develop abdominal aneurysms more often than women.
  • Smoking is the strongest risk factor. It weakens the aortic walls and increases the risk of developing an aneurysm, and rupture. The longer an individual smokes or chews tobacco, the higher the chances.
  • Individuals aged 65 and older are the most targeted group for this condition.
  • A family history of abdominal aneurysms increases the risk.
  • Aneurysm in another blood vessel, like the artery behind the knee or the chest aortic region, could increase the risk.

Sciatic Nerve Compression

Sciatica is usually caused by compression on the nerve. Spinal and non-spinal disorders are known to cause pain include:
  • Low back misaligned vertebral body/s
  • Herniated/bulging/slipped discs
  • Pregnancy/childbirth
  • Spinal tumors
  • Diabetes
  • Constipation
  • Sitting too long
Sciatic nerve compression can cause a loss of feeling known as sensory loss, paralysis of a limb, or group of muscles known as monoplegia, and insomnia.

Proper Diagnosis Is Essential

Because of the many disorders that can cause sciatica, a doctor’s first step is to determine the cause. This involves forming a diagnosis based on a thorough review of an individual’s medical history, a physical and neurological examination. The sciatic nerve has several smaller nerves that branch off. These smaller nerves enable movement motor function and feeling sensory functions in the thighs, knees, calves, ankles, feet, and toes. If a chiropractor determines the patient’s disorder requires treatment by another specialist, then the individual will be referred to the proper doctor. In some cases, the chiropractor could be called upon to continue spinal therapy and help manage the individual’s treatment plan with the other specialist/s.

Sciatica Pain Treatment

 

   

Dr. Alex Jimenez’s Blog Post Disclaimer

The scope of our information is limited to chiropractic, musculoskeletal, physical medicines, wellness, and sensitive health issues and/or functional medicine articles, topics, and discussions. We use functional health & wellness protocols to treat and support care for injuries or disorders of the musculoskeletal system. Our posts, topics, subjects, and insights cover clinical matters, issues, and topics that relate and support directly or indirectly our clinical scope of practice.* Our office has made a reasonable attempt to provide supportive citations and has identified the relevant research study or studies supporting our posts. We also make copies of supporting research studies available to the board and or the public upon request. We understand that we cover matters that require an additional explanation as to how it may assist in a particular care plan or treatment protocol; therefore, to further discuss the subject matter above, please feel free to ask Dr. Alex Jimenez or contact us at 915-850-0900. The provider(s) Licensed in Texas& New Mexico*

Axial, Uncomplicated, Whiplash, Neck Pain

11860 Vista Del Sol, Ste. 128 Axial, Uncomplicated, Whiplash, Neck Pain
Physiotherapist stretching neck of a female patient in the clinic
Axial neck pain is also known as uncomplicated neck pain, whiplash, and cervical/neck strain. They refer to pain and discomfort running along the back or posterior of the neck. Axial is defined as forming or around an axis. This type of pain stays around the neck and immediate surrounding structures. It does not spread/radiate out to the arms, hands, fingers, and other areas of the body. Axial neck pain differs from two other neck conditions. They are: Cervical radiculopathy describes irritation or compression/pinching of the nerve as it exits the spinal cord. The nerves of the cervical spine are known as the peripheral nerves. They are responsible for relaying signals to and from the brain to specific areas of the arms and hands. The signals that are sent from the brain are for muscle movement, while signals going to the brain are for sensation.  
CervicalMusculatureDiagram ChiropractorElPaso
 
11860 Vista Del Sol, Ste. 128 Axial, Uncomplicated, Whiplash, Neck Pain
 
When one of these nerve/s gets irritated, inflamed, or injured it can result in:
  • Muscle pain
  • Weakness
  • Numbness
  • Tingling sensation
  • Burning pain
  • Other types of abnormal sensations in the arms, hands, or fingers.
Cervical myelopathy describes compression of the spinal cord itself. The spinal cord is the information highway/pipeline to all parts of the body. There is a range of symptoms that can include:
  • Same symptoms as cervical radiculopathy
  • Balance problems
  • Coordination problems
  • Loss of fine motor skills
  • Bowel and bladder incontinence

Axial neck pain

Axial neck pain is a quite common type of neck pain. It affects around 10% of the population. However, the majority of these cases do not involve severe symptoms that limit daily activity.

Symptoms

Pain in the back of the neck is the primary and most common symptom. Sometimes the pain travels to the base of the skull, shoulder, or shoulder blade. Other symptoms include:
  • Neck stiffness
  • Headaches
  • Localized muscle pain
  • Warmth
  • Tingling
11860 Vista Del Sol, Ste. 128 Axial, Uncomplicated, Whiplash, Neck Pain
 

Developmental Risk factors

Poor posture, lack of ergonomics, and muscle weakness increase the chances of developing axial neck pain. Risk factors for development include:
  • Age
  • Trauma – Auto accident, sports, personal, work injury
  • Headaches
  • Depression
  • Chronic neck pain
  • Sleep problems

Diagnosis

Based on symptoms and physical exam findings are how a diagnosis is usually achieved. A doctor will typically order an x-ray, CT, or MRI of the cervical spine. There could be severe symptoms that could indicate something more dangerous causing pain like infection, cancer, or fracture. This calls for an immediate visit to a hospital/clinic for evaluation. These symptoms include:
  • Prior trauma/injury from a fall, automobile accident, sports, work injury
  • Fever
  • Weight loss
  • Night sweats
  • Constant night pain
Rheumatic conditions/diseases that cause neck pain can include morning stiffness and immobility that gets better as the day progresses. If symptoms continue for more than 6 weeks, imaging of the spine could be recommended. Especially, for individuals that have had previous neck or spine surgery or if it could be cervical radiculopathy or myelopathy.

Treatment

There is a wide range of treatment options. Surgery is rarely required except for severe cases. Returning to normal activities almost right away is one of the most important things to do to prevent the pain from becoming chronic. First-line treatments typically begin with:
  • Physical therapy
  • Chiropractic
  • Stretching routine
  • Strengthening exercises
  • Acetaminophen
  • Anti-inflammatory medication/s
  • Muscle relaxants are sometimes prescribed
If a cervical spine fracture has been diagnosed, a neck brace could be recommended for short term use. A soft collar could be utilized if the pain is severe but a doctor will usually discontinue use after 3 days. Other non-invasive treatment options include:
  • TENS – transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation
  • Electromagnetic therapy
  • Qigong
  • Acupuncture
  • Low-level laser therapy
  • Cognitive-behavioral therapy
Invasive treatments like injections, nerve ablation, and surgery are rarely required. But if necessary it can be beneficial for those cases.  
el paso, tx doctor
 

Causes

A variety of the neck’s anatomical structures can contribute to the pain. Common causes include:
  • Poor posture
  • Age
  • Degeneration
  • Ergonomics
  • Injury to muscles or ligaments
  • Arthritis
All of these can affect vertebral bodies, discs, and facet joints. Shoulder arthritis or a rotator cuff tear can imitate axial neck pain. Dysfunction of the temporomandibular jaw joint or the blood vessels of the neck can cause axial pain but it is rare.

Prognosis

Symptoms are usually alleviated within 4-6 weeks from when the pain started. Pain that continues beyond this should encourage a visit to a chiropractic physician.

Prevention

  • Keep neck muscles strong with exercise.
  • Stretch the neck regularly.
  • A healthy diet specifically for bone support.
  • Proper sleep posture for example sleeping on the back or side with a pillow that supports the natural curve of the neck.
  • If on a computer for work or a long period align the eyes with the top third of the screen.
  • Avoid looking down when on the phone, reading, etc for a long time by keeping the arms supported on an armrest.
  • Glasses should be pushed up on the bridge of the nose, if they slide down there is a tendency for the head to follow.
  • Don’t forget to look up frequently.
Optimizing posture, ergonomics, and muscle strengthening can help in the prevention of the onset of pain and help alleviate the symptoms.
 

Whiplash Neck Pain Chiropractic Treatment

 

 

Dr. Alex Jimenez’s Blog Post Disclaimer

The scope of our information is limited to chiropractic, musculoskeletal, physical medicines, wellness, and sensitive health issues and/or functional medicine articles, topics, and discussions. We use functional health & wellness protocols to treat and support care for injuries or disorders of the musculoskeletal system. Our posts, topics, subjects, and insights cover clinical matters, issues, and topics that relate and support directly or indirectly our clinical scope of practice.* Our office has made a reasonable attempt to provide supportive citations and has identified the relevant research study or studies supporting our posts. We also make copies of supporting research studies available to the board and or the public upon request. We understand that we cover matters that require an additional explanation as to how it may assist in a particular care plan or treatment protocol; therefore, to further discuss the subject matter above, please feel free to ask Dr. Alex Jimenez or contact us at 915-850-0900. The provider(s) Licensed in Texas& New Mexico*

Driving Tips to Help Reduce Back Pain

11860 Vista Del Sol, Ste. 128 Driving Tips to Help Reduce Back Pain
Side view of a girl driving a car with her girls friend beside her
Driving with back pain can make trips a nightmare. Here are some driving tips to save your back when on the move. There is nothing like the freedom of hitting the open road. Family, friends, or solo, the destination along with new sights breezing by, refreshes the mind. With the COVID pandemic, many have turned to trucks, cars, SUVs, and RVs for a comfortable, safe mode of transportation.  
11860 Vista Del Sol, Ste. 128 Driving Tips to Help Reduce Back Pain
  Back pain from driving can become a serious issue. Studies have shown how low back pain, and spending a significant amount of time driving are interconnected. And other studies have also shown living a sedentary lifestyle like sitting for a long time will lead to some form of back pain that can become exacerbated by elongated driving. Road trips and regular commuting can both impact an individual’s spine. It depends on the length of time drivers are behind the wheel as well as any present spinal conditions. Long commutes and road trips can take a toll on the body that can continue to increase in its severity. Individuals live most of their lives in a flexed/flexing posture. Meaning that there is the ability to shift positions and move around. This could be like Sleeping curled up, then on the back, sitting at a desk/workstation, then standing, stretching out, twisting, and bending. Driving creates a whole different type of spinal stress because of the physical mechanics involved. Automobiles generate different types of forces on the back. Factors such as accelerating, decelerating, swaying side to side, and vibrations all can contribute to back pain. To elaborate the feet and legs control the vehicle, and so are not able to help stabilize the spine, and vibration from uneven/loose gravel roads can cause issues with the spinal discs. Discomfort and pain can occur for the driver and passenger/s. Individuals with diagnosed back condition/s can experience a worsening of symptoms and an increase in pain. This could be a postural imbalance, sciatica, or arthritis. Here are some driving tips to show how to prevent back pain before, during, and after the trip.  
 

Before Driving

Prevention is the best way to decrease back pain when driving. The following precautions are recommended:
  • Think about getting helpful sitting aids/lumbar support cushions, like memory foam and air-filled seat cushions.
  • If specifically dealing with tailbone pain, a support with a tailbone cutout is recommended.
  • Optimize the seat by placing the back a little beyond fully upright. From 100 to 105-110 degrees, so the individual maintains proper posture. Inclining more can lead to a forward-head posture that can cause neck pain.
  • Driving ergonomics need to be incorporated.
  • The seat should be close enough to the steering wheel to provide a relaxed upper body posture. However, make sure that the legs are not to close to the steering wheel and there is room to maneuver. The seat should be level around 5 degrees upward to provide support to the legs.
  • If unable to provide lumbar support rolling up a towel/thick sweater etc can be placed in the small of the back providing a quick fix.

The Drive

Eyes on the road and hands at 10 and 2 but don’t take the focus off the spine.
  • If driving for more than 20 minutes, it is recommended to make adjustments/changes in the seated position. Just a slight tweak can reduce the driving forces on the spine.
  • Driving for longer than an hour then short breaks are necessary. Pit stops are spine savers. Just like work breaks that involve standing, walking around, and stretching out, bending forward and leaning backward will keep the spine flexible, uncompressed with optimal blood flow.
  • Heated seats can help soothe tight back muscles. It acts as a heating pad.
  • Remove items from pockets, especially wallets or similar objects in the back pocket. This can lead to an asymmetrical position that leads to shifting weight/stress loads to one side creating an added strain on the spine and awkward postures.
11860 Vista Del Sol, Ste. 128 Driving Tips to Help Reduce Back Pain
 

Stopping

After driving for an extended period, resting is vital to spine health. Utilize time out of the vehicle to continue prevention.
  • Sitting right after driving is not recommended.
  • Right after driving the body needs to move after being in the static driving/passenger position for some time.
  • Standing, walking, and doing some gentle stretches are recommended. Back extensions and side bending are examples.
  • Core exercises can help and should also be incorporated into a regular physical exercise regimen.
  • However, exercises after long or strenuous drives when the body is fatigued are not recommended, as intense exercise can lead to injury or worsening of back pain.

Pain Continues After

If there was a small/low amount of pain or if it was a pain-free experience then perhaps the driving tips helped. If the pain continues and there was no help with these driving tips, it might be time to see a doctor or chiropractor. Minor aches and pains can be expected, but if there is pain lasting longer than a few days or limits function, then seeking out medical advice is recommended.

Car Accident Chiropractic Treatment


 

Dr. Alex Jimenez’s Blog Post Disclaimer

The scope of our information is limited to chiropractic, musculoskeletal, physical medicines, wellness, and sensitive health issues and/or functional medicine articles, topics, and discussions. We use functional health & wellness protocols to treat and support care for injuries or disorders of the musculoskeletal system. Our posts, topics, subjects, and insights cover clinical matters, issues, and topics that relate and support directly or indirectly our clinical scope of practice.* Our office has made a reasonable attempt to provide supportive citations and has identified the relevant research study or studies supporting our posts. We also make copies of supporting research studies available to the board and or the public upon request. We understand that we cover matters that require an additional explanation as to how it may assist in a particular care plan or treatment protocol; therefore, to further discuss the subject matter above, please feel free to ask Dr. Alex Jimenez or contact us at 915-850-0900. The provider(s) Licensed in Texas& New Mexico*

Enjoy the Hobbies You Love Without Back and Neck Pain

11860 Vista Del Sol, Ste. 128 Enjoying the Hobbies You Love Without Back and Neck Pain
Beautiful woman making ceramic pottery on wheel, hands close-up. Concept for woman in freelance, business, hobby
We all have our hobbies that we are passionate about, love doing, and could see turning into a second career. However, certain hobbies can generate stress on the spine. This often leads to a decrease in being able to participate in these activities, which can lead to various health issues. Maintaining the body’s physical fitness and keeping the spine healthy is key to being able to continue without neck or back pain. Hobbies are an important part of life. Individuals need to enjoy what they love from sports activities to music to arts and craft projects. Having activities/hobbies help:
  • Boost mental health
  • Relieve stress
  • Lower blood pressure
  • Promotes weight loss
  • Meditative qualities
Here’s how to make sure the hobbies/activities are fun and safe.  
11860 Vista Del Sol, Ste. 128 Enjoying the Hobbies You Love Without Back and Neck Pain
 

Protecting the Neck

Poor posture is one of the leading causes of neck and back pain. Looking down or being in a standing/sitting hunched position regularly increases the load/stress on the neck increasing the chances for strain, injury, headaches, and chronic pain. In the neutral position, the skull weighs around 10-12 pounds. When leaning the head forward weight increases from let’s say 27 pounds at a 15-degree angle to 60 pounds at a 60-degree angle. The strain on the cervical vertebrae, joints, and muscles can be immense. A good example is text-neck. This has become a normal thing when using a smartphone, gaming, or other similar activities. Studies suggest that the average individual spends three to five hours a day on a smartphone or tablet. This means three to five hours of extra weight on the cervical spine. Engaging in a hobby that requires an individual to look down constantly in a similar fashion can lead to serious and chronic neck pain along with other cervical issues.  
 
Individuals are spending more time at home and getting more serious about their hobbies. This is fantastic, however, these individuals need to take time to stretch out, and get some physical activity into their hobby routine. Just like taking frequent walk-around, stretch out at work breaks, so to do hobbyists need to step back from their projects to keep a healthy balance. The position of the neck and the way it is held for activities like:
  • Sewing
  • Carpentry
  • Gardening
  • Painting
  • Pottery
  • Knitting
  • Music
Hobbies like this can increase the risk of neck pain, so the key is prevention, paying attention to head posture every now and again, and taking stretching breaks.

Proper Posture Makes a Difference

11860 Vista Del Sol, Ste. 128 Enjoying the Hobbies You Love Without Back and Neck Pain
 
Many individuals stand and sit when working on their hobbies. This is quite common and is encouraged when doing these absorbing activities. But being immersed in these activities, most forget to check their posture when doing so. This is what leads to problems that at first are shrugged off as just soreness. Eventually, the individual begins to engage in bad/awkward posture habits that avoid the pain and think this will help. This worsens the problems and promotes further strain/injury. Leaning, bending, reaching, and twisting curves the spine increasing the load and stress. Performing these actions over and over for extended periods means:
  • Strain
  • Low back pain
  • Muscle spasms
  • Sciatica
  • Leg pain
  • Foot pain
Slouching is another posture problem that increases the likelihood of lower back pain. Slouching causes gaps between the lower back vertebrae. This stresses the facet joints or the connections between the vertebrae. The soft tissues elongate/stretch and lengthen like muscles and connective tissue. What elongation does is:
  • Cause the tissues to attempt to snap back to the original shape. This can cause painful spasms.
  • Muscles that are constantly elongated become weaker with time.
The longer an individual sits, stands, and slouches impacts the body’s health negatively, leading to a chain of health problems. Maintaining proper posture and keeping the spine straight minimizes the strain on muscles and the vertebrae. Prevent pain and discomfort.  
 

Ergonomics at the House

Ergonomic stressors include:
  • The force/s required to perform and complete a physical chore/task.
  • Adopted static and awkward working postures to complete task/s
  • The repetitiveness of the task/s
Any of these factors or combination places a higher risk for discomfort, pain, and injury. The immediate surroundings like the bench, work area, craft room, etc. and how the individual moves or does not move, and interacts in these areas is the focus of ergonomics. Proper ergonomics will help protect the spine, as well as the rest of the body. Improper ergonomics can cause damage like muscle strain, repetitive movements, and incorrect posture. Taking a look at the hobby workspace the ergonomics, and making any necessary adjustments can help prevent strain/injury.

Proper seating

Make sure the right type of chair, stool, bench, etc is being utilized. Adjustable types that have neck and lower back support are the way to go. Make sure the base is stable, the seat is comfortable and adjustable. Backrests and armrests can help maintain proper posture.

Correct table/desk/workstation height

Various drafting tables and lap desks have adjustable surfaces to adjust the height for working with a proper ergonomic posture. If the work surface is not adjustable adjust the chair or make adjustments as needed. The hips should be higher than the knees to take the strain off the sacrum and lower back. The upper back should be straight, with the shoulder blades together creating a supportive platform for the neck and head.

Tools

Using the best tools for working and organization will help avoid injuries and constant awkward positions like leaning/reaching over and around the workspace. Look for tools that can be adjusted to different heights, resistance levels, etc. depending on what is needed and what will reduce any strain.

Vision

If an individual needs to lean in to get a closer look then vision could be the problem. If an individual wears glasses it could be time for a check-up. Or if an individual does not wear glasses, it could be time to see an optometrist. Non-prescription magnifiers could be the answer.  
mobility flexibility el paso tx.
 

Stretching Regularly

Working too long in one position can be detrimental to overall health. It is very understandable when individuals get into the zone, working on something creative, and not wanting to stop the flow. However, frequent breaks are vital. Stretching regularly and getting up to move around is key to staying healthy.

Neck Stretch

  • Stretch the neck by turning the head from side to side in a gentle fashion.
  • Tip the head to each side so the ear almost touches the shoulder.
  • Lower the head so that the chin almost touches the chest.
  • Turn the to look diagonally down at the armpit. This stretches the trapezius and levator scapulae muscles.
  • Hold the stretches for 10-15 seconds.
  • Always perform slowly and gently.

Lower Back Stretch

15 minutes a day of stretches will maintain the health of the spine. If pain or discomfort becomes frequent or unmanageable, seek professional help. Physical therapists and chiropractors are trained in orthopedic issues and ergonomics without prescription. Call a doctor or physical therapist to find out if treatment is necessary. Following these guidelines can help keep hobbies fun and without pain.

Lower Back Pain Skate Boarding Injury Treatment

 

 

Dr. Alex Jimenez’s Blog Post Disclaimer

The scope of our information is limited to chiropractic, musculoskeletal, physical medicines, wellness, and sensitive health issues and/or functional medicine articles, topics, and discussions. We use functional health & wellness protocols to treat and support care for injuries or disorders of the musculoskeletal system. Our posts, topics, subjects, and insights cover clinical matters, issues, and topics that relate and support directly or indirectly our clinical scope of practice.* Our office has made a reasonable attempt to provide supportive citations and has identified the relevant research study or studies supporting our posts. We also make copies of supporting research studies available to the board and or the public upon request. We understand that we cover matters that require an additional explanation as to how it may assist in a particular care plan or treatment protocol; therefore, to further discuss the subject matter above, please feel free to ask Dr. Alex Jimenez or contact us at 915-850-0900. The provider(s) Licensed in Texas& New Mexico*

Superfoods Can Help Achieve Optimal Health

11860 Vista Del Sol, Ste. 128 Superfoods Can Help Achieve Optimal Health
Slim Asian Woman In Fitwear Cooking Fresh Vegetable Salad For Dinner Standing In Kitchen Dieting At Home On Weekend. Detox Diet And Nutrition For Weight Loss, Healthy Food Recipes Concept
Superfoods are nutrient-rich foods that can be incorporated into an individual’s diet to achieve optimal health. We look at which foods contain the most nutrients, and how to create meals with the best variety of foods to improve overall health and support strong body composition. Superfoods have a high-levels of antioxidants, along with many vast amounts of essential vitamins and minerals. These are fresh, colorful foods that are packed with nutrients. The more vibrant the color, the more antioxidant power. What to look for in different foods to optimize health and improve your body composition is the objective.  
11860 Vista Del Sol, Ste. 128 Superfoods Can Help Achieve Optimal Health
 

Superfoods

Superfoods can be defined as food that is rich in compounds that are highly beneficial for health. Foods like phytochemicals, fiber, and Omega-3 fatty acids. National nutritional guidelines consider these foods as powerhouse fruits and vegetables. Research shows that a diet rich in fruits and vegetables is associated with a reduced risk of chronic disease. Antioxidants like polyphenols have anti-inflammatory properties. Inflammation can be caused by infection, injury, and disease. A diet rich in antioxidants helps lead to faster recovery time from injury, illness, as well as, exercise-induced stress.
  • Antioxidants reduce free radicals, prevent and repair damage caused by oxidative stress. Oxidative stress happens when free radicals start to accumulate in the body. It can play a significant role in chronic and degenerative illnesses like cancer, arthritis, and cardiovascular disease.
  • Anthocyanins are a type of polyphenol that acts as antioxidants that can help reduce the chance of chronic disease. Pigments are found in plants, which give certain fruits and vegetables their vibrant colors. These include:
  1. Berries
  2. Cherries
  3. Peaches
  4. Pomegranates
  5. Black beans
  6. Eggplant
  7. Purple sweet potatoes

Evidence suggests that a diet rich in anthocyanins helps:

  • Reduce oxidative stress and inflammation
  • Prevent cardiovascular disease
  • Control of diabetes
  • Prevent diabetes

Superfoods can help individuals with:

  • Weight loss
  • Improved muscular function
  • Body composition improvement
  • Boosting the immune system

Key Nutrients

Antioxidant properties are found in many superfoods along with nutrients to be aware of. The nutrients listed can be beneficial in optimizing health. Remember to consult a doctor before making or supplementing dietary changes.
  • Vitamin B
  • Vitamin C
  • Omega-3 Fatty Acids
  • Magnesium
  • Zinc

Omega-3’s

Omega-3 fatty acids promote many health benefits, which include reduced risk of obesity, heart disease, and other chronic illnesses. Omega-3’s contain anti-inflammatory properties and help enhance recovery after exercise. A standard diet usually contains a higher ratio of Omega-6 fatty acids compared to Omega-3’s. This unbalance increases inflammation and reduces immune system response. Omega-6 acids include vegetable oils that do offer health benefits. However, it is important to keep a healthy balance between the two. Top sources of Omega-3’s include:
  • Fatty fish
  • Fish oils – salmon, mackerel, and cod liver
  • Oysters
  • Chia seeds
  • Flaxseeds

Magnesium

Magnesium supports the health of the immune system. It supports and maintains healthy bone structure, muscle function, and insulin levels. It assists the body with energy, metabolism, and acts as a calcium blocker. This reduces cramping and aids in muscle relaxation after working out. Magnesium is essential for over 300 biochemical reactions in the body. A deficiency can increase the risk of cardiovascular disease. Research shows that magnesium deficiency can lead to a higher risk of insulin resistance. Magnesium-rich foods like dark leafy greens, nuts, legumes, and whole grains are also high in fiber. Individuals that have a diet rich in magnesium have a higher intake of dietary fiber, as well. Fiber helps with digestion, control weight, reduce cholesterol, and stabilize blood sugar. The best sources of Magnesium include:
  • Green vegetables such as spinach, swiss chard, and turnip greens
  • Nuts such as almonds and cashews
  • Seeds
  • Legumes
  • Cocoa

Zinc

Zinc is an essential nutrient for overall immune function support. It is an antioxidant that helps with anti-inflammatory and oxidative stress responses. Chemical reactions within the body require zinc. Zinc is a necessary element for muscle protein synthesis and hormone regulation. Zinc deficiency is common in seniors and can be connected with degenerative diseases like rheumatoid arthritis, atherosclerosis, and age-related macular degeneration. Deficiency can also cause weight loss, delayed growth, and muscle atrophy. Zinc supplements are not recommended for healthy individuals as they can interfere with other essential vitamins and micronutrient interactions. Top sources of Zinc include:
  • Chicken
  • Red meat
  • Legumes
  • Nuts
  • Oysters

Vitamin C

Vitamin C is one of the immune systems supporting vitamins. It is an antioxidant that helps reduce free radicals and protects macromolecules from oxidative damage that could contribute to chronic diseases. Vitamin C deficiency has shown an increased risk of developing cardiovascular diseases, which include coronary heart disease, ischemic stroke, and hypertension. Vitamin C has a significant role in collagen synthesis and provides support in vascular function, which helps reduce inflammation and inflammatory diseases like atherosclerosis. Vitamin C has been found to play a role in possibly lowering blood pressure. Evidence suggests that vitamin C can help prevent obesity and obesity-related illnesses. Top sources of Vitamin C include:
  • Broccoli
  • Tomatoes
  • Citrus fruit
  • Strawberries
  • Cherries
  • Peppers

Vitamin B

Eight vitamins that make up the B vitamin complex all have various responsibilities for energy production and DNA synthesis. An increased intake of vitamin B is associated with improved metabolic pathways like glucose metabolism and reduces obesity risk. Consuming enough of the vitamins is essential. Having a deficiency in just one vitamin can lead to decreased energy, poor cognition, and muscle weakness.

The eight vitamins in the B complex are:

  • B1 – Thiamine
  • B2 – Riboflavin
  • B3 – Niacin
  • B5 – Pantothenic acid
  • B6 – Pyridoxine
  • B7 – Biotin
  • B9 – Folic acid
  • B12

The best sources for B vitamins include:

  • Asparagus
  • Avocado
  • Bananas
  • Beef /liver
  • Eggs
  • Lentils
  • Nuts
  • Spinach

Eating Superfoods

  • Leafy greens that are rich in vitamin A, C, and K, iron, and more
  • Salmon is a great source of Omega-3s
  • Cherries are rich in vitamin C and polyphenols
  • Berries are rich in Vitamin C and high in antioxidants
  • Nuts are packed with essential vitamins, minerals, and healthy fats
  • Garlic is a great source of Vitamin C and B-Complex
  • Turmeric contains potent anti-inflammatory and antioxidants
  • Cacao is packed with nutrients, and contain magnesium, zinc, iron, potassium, and more
  • Manuka Honey is packed with antioxidants and anti-inflammatory properties
  • Tea/s are filled with antioxidant properties and polyphenolic compounds

These superfoods have been shown to:

  • Improve body composition
  • Reduce the risk of chronic illnesses
  • Provide immune support
  • Antioxidant properties
  • Reduce inflammation, oxidative stress, and free radicals

Leafy Greens

Leafy greens like spinach, kale, turnip greens, and collard greens have been shown to reduce the risk for type II diabetes and cancer, which includes breast cancer, and they help protect against depression symptoms. Leafy greens contain many nutrients, which makes them a superfood staple. Leafy greens contain vitamins A, C, and K, iron, folate, zinc, and magnesium. They are a great source of fiber, carotenoids, and antioxidants that help to protect the cells.  
 

Salmon

Salmon is a perfect source of Omega-3s. These help in improving the immune system’s response, neuromuscular functioning, and enhanced cognition. Eating plenty of salmon, and other fatty fish helps reduce blood pressure and symptoms associated with coronary heart disease. Consuming whole-food proteins like salmon help with workout/exercise muscle protein synthesis better than a protein supplement. Omega-3’s can improve body composition because the fatty acids counteract muscle atrophy and promote recovery from muscles not being used brought on by surgery and inactivity.  
 

Cherries

Cherries contain a high source of vitamin C and polyphenols. Both contain antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties that help reduce oxidative stress. Oxidative stress contributes to inflammation and atherosclerosis, which can contribute to cardiovascular disease. Cherries promote health, provide cardioprotective support, help to reduce blood pressure and LDL cholesterol.  
 

Berries

Berries are known for containing antioxidant properties. Berries like:
  • Blueberries
  • Strawberries
  • Lingonberries
  • Blackberries
All contain flavonoids and anthocyanins. Both of these help in reducing oxidative stress. Eating berries has been shown to improve cardiovascular health. Moderate consumption of berries helps improve blood platelet function and HDL cholesterol, as well as helps reduce blood pressure. Anthocyanins, flavonoids, and phytochemicals are believed to reduce the risk of cancer, primarily of the GI tract and breast. Berries can also provide neuroprotective support, that can help prevent a decrease in cognitive functions and dementia.  
11860 Vista Del Sol, Ste. 128 Superfoods Can Help Achieve Optimal Health
 

Nuts

Nuts are considered a nutritious superfood. They contain essential vitamins, minerals, and healthy fats. However, nuts are recommended in limited amounts because of their high-fat content. Also, nuts that are salted or flavored, lower health benefits. Individuals that eat a handful of nuts as part of a healthy diet have shown to be able to maintain and improve body composition. Healthy lifestyle diets like the DASH Diet and the Mediterranean Diet recommend moderate consumption of nuts. They help lower blood pressure, improve heart function, and reduce contributing factors to coronary heart disease and diabetes. Nuts include a variety of nutrients like vitamins:
  • B3
  • B6
  • B9
  • E
All help in the reduced risk of metabolic syndrome and related illnesses. Nuts also provide antioxidants which include phytochemicals:
  • Carotenoids
  • Polyphenols
  • Tocopherols
These compounds contain anti-inflammatory properties. And nuts have the potential to reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease, diabetes, and types of cancer.  
 

Garlic

Garlic is an antioxidant and has been shown to improve immune function along with the cardiovascular system. It is a good source of vitamin C and B-complex vitamins. Both enhance the effectiveness of immune system protection. Eating garlic has been shown to help lower cholesterol, blood pressure, delays the progression of atherosclerosis, and improves circulation. Studies have shown that garlic is highly effective in preventing yeast infections, as well as, treating ear infections. There is a compound known as allicin and helps shield the stomach from the spread of Helicobacter pylori, a bacterium related to gastrointestinal cancer.
 

Turmeric

Turmeric is another antioxidant. It helps manage inflammatory conditions like metabolic syndrome and arthritis. The polyphenol antioxidant is curcumin. It has been shown to help reduce inflammation, pain, and benefits the kidneys. Curcumin has been shown to reduce symptoms resulting from metabolic syndrome. Curcumin has been shown to:
  • Improve insulin sensitivity
  • Reduce the accumulation of fat storage that can lead to obesity
  • Lower blood pressure
  • Lower oxidative stress
 

Cacao

Cacao is chocolate in the purest form. It is packed with nutrients and contains:
  • Magnesium
  • Zinc
  • Iron
  • Potassium
  • Calcium
  • Copper
  • Manganese
Cocoa is the processed form that generally contains sugars and dairy products. The beans contain antioxidants and phytochemicals like polyphenols and flavonoids that protect cells against free radicals along with oxidative stress. There is a flavanol called epicatechin and is linked to improved cognition and a better mood. Dark chocolate helps reduce metabolic syndrome risk factors, including:
  • Reduced blood pressure
  • Improved insulin sensitivity
  • Stabilized glucose levels
Heart function is improved by reducing platelet reactivity and inhibiting oxidant production.  
 

Manuka Honey

Honey has antioxidant properties and provides anti-inflammatory and anti-cancer benefits. It is made up of:
  • Sugars
  • Flavonoids
  • Phenolic acids
  • Enzymes
  • Amino acids
  • Proteins
  • Other compounds have anti-tumor and anti-leukemic properties
Manuka honey also has antibacterial properties and is very beneficial in healing wounds. Store-bought honey should not be used to treat cuts and wounds. Manuka honey is darker, and thicker that comes specifically from the manuka plant. It has more microbial properties than other types of honey. All honey has antioxidants, but Manuka has high levels of organic compounds that correlate with increased antibacterial activity. It is among the most powerful antioxidants that benefit athletes. Honey can easily be incorporated into a daily diet as a sweetener for tea, or as a topping for yogurt or oatmeal. However, it is not recommended for infants under one year of age. This is because babies have a higher risk of contracting botulism.  
11860 Vista Del Sol, Ste. 128 Superfoods Can Help Achieve Optimal Health
 

Tea

Tea contains antioxidant properties and polyphenolic compounds. Studies show the polyphenols, specifically in green tea have anti-inflammatory properties. This is a common treatment for preventing osteoarthritis. The catechins are a type of phenol that helps reduce free radicals and the presence of oxidative stress. It has also been shown to effectively improve body composition. Drinking 3-4 cups of tea a day can significantly reduce weight gain and risks associated with metabolic syndrome. However, drinking 3-4 cups a day might not be the answer for everybody, it can be something to consider.  
11860 Vista Del Sol, Ste. 128 Superfoods Can Help Achieve Optimal Health
 

Incorporation

The objective is achieving optimal health, along with improved body composition. Choosing a diet that is nutrient-packed and includes a variety of fresh, whole foods is the primary focus. There is no miracle food or effective cure for cancer, but when nutrient and antioxidant-rich superfoods are part of an individual’s diet overall health will improve. These are known as lifestyle diets and are meant to change habits and are not just for losing weight. These lifestyle diets include:

Dash Diet

The DASH diet stands for Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension. This diet is non-restrictive and promotes the consumption of fresh, whole foods while focusing on serving and portion sizes. The National Institute of Health developed this as a means to reduce blood pressure and improve cardiovascular health.

Mediterranean Diet

This diet is based on the eating habits of those living in countries that surround the Mediterranean. Studies determined individuals living in this region were among the healthiest with the lowest chances of cardiovascular-related conditions/diseases, obesity, and improved mental wellbeing. It emphasizes physical activity and consistent consumption of fresh, whole foods, including heart-healthy foods like fish and various seafood.

Flexitarian Diet

The flexitarian is a semi-vegetarian diet that is primarily vegetarian with occasional meat or fish. It focuses on sustainability and recognizes the vitally important protein, vitamins, and other nutrients that meat contains. However, meat is not eaten every day. Individuals that switch from mostly meat diets to flexitarian have shown to improve body composition reduce the risk of developing metabolic syndrome along with diabetes, and cancer. Making adjustments do not have to be huge changes. Small changes will go a long way. Adding these essential superfood nutrients can promote significant benefits for overall health and well-being.

Detox Diet


 

Dr. Alex Jimenez’s Blog Post Disclaimer

The scope of our information is limited to chiropractic, musculoskeletal, physical medicines, wellness, and sensitive health issues and/or functional medicine articles, topics, and discussions. We use functional health & wellness protocols to treat and support care for injuries or disorders of the musculoskeletal system. Our posts, topics, subjects, and insights cover clinical matters, issues, and topics that relate and support directly or indirectly our clinical scope of practice.* Our office has made a reasonable attempt to provide supportive citations and has identified the relevant research study or studies supporting our posts. We also make copies of supporting research studies available to the board and or the public upon request. We understand that we cover matters that require an additional explanation as to how it may assist in a particular care plan or treatment protocol; therefore, to further discuss the subject matter above, please feel free to ask Dr. Alex Jimenez or contact us at 915-850-0900. The provider(s) Licensed in Texas& New Mexico*

Chiari Malformation Brain Tissue and The Spinal Canal

11860 Vista Del Sol, Ste. 128 Chiari Malformation Brain Tissue and The Spinal Canal
Manual therapist massaging neck of female patient

Chiari malformation is a condition that causes brain tissue to extend out and settle into the spinal canal. It protrudes out where the skull and neck meet. It occurs because part of the skull is too small or shaped in a unique way that allows part of the brain to settle into the foramen magnum. The foramen magnum is a large opening at the bottom of the skull. The brain’s nerves go through into the spinal canal and join the spinal cord. However, only the nerves should be present. The brain should not be able to push/press/leak through. When it does this is Chiari malformation.  

11860 Vista Del Sol, Ste. 128 Chiari Malformation Brain Tissue and The Spinal Canal
 

Causes

Chiari malformation can be caused by structural problem/s with the:

Structural conditions/issues can be present at birth, which are congenital defects. This is also called primary Chiari malformation and is not caused by any other condition. Secondary Chiari malformations are caused by something else, most often through surgery. This is extremely rare, but it is possible to develop after having surgery to remove a tumor in the skull or neck region. A surgeon could have removed too much bone while removing the tumor. This allowed the brain to settle into the open space.

 

Types

There are 4 types and are categorized by how much brain tissue protrudes into the spinal canal.

 

Type I

This is the adult version and is also the most common.

It is usually first noticed and discovered from an examination for something else. Most individuals don’t realize that they have Chiari malformation unless the symptoms are severe. With Type I a part of the brain, specifically the cerebellar tonsils settle into the foramen magnum.

 

Type II

Type II is also known as Arnold-Chiari malformation. This is the pediatric version. Symptoms are more severe with Type II because more brain tissue comes through. With this type, the cerebellar tonsils and some of the brainstem protrude. With Type II myelomeningocele, which is a form of spina bifida is a concern. What happens is the vertebrae and spinal canal do not close correctly before birth, so the spinal cord has no protection.

 

Type III

This type also affects children and is more severe than types 1 or 2. Here a significant portion of the brain, including the cerebellum and the brainstem protrude all the way through the foramen into the spinal canal.

 

Type IV

Type IV is the most severe form. With this type, the brain does not develop properly.

 

Symptoms

The symptoms vary based on the type and severity. The most common symptom is a headache. Individuals with a Chiari malformation usually have headaches in the occipital region of the brain. This is the back of the head, right where the skull joins the cervical spine/neck. The headaches can be aggravated being in certain positions and actions, tilting the head back, and coughing. Typical symptoms include:

  • Balance problems
  • Dizziness
  • Difficulty with fine motor skills
  • Trouble swallowing
  • Vision problems
  • Weakness

However, Chiari malformation can interrupt the flow of cerebrospinal fluid. Cerebrospinal fluid is necessary to protect the brain and spinal cord. If the normal flow is disrupted it becomes more difficult for the brain and spinal cord to send/receive nerve messages. The pressure built up can also cause nerve issues/problems. For some individuals, symptoms can come and go. This depends on how much cerebrospinal fluid has built up. Individuals with Type I sometimes don’t have any symptoms. It all depends on the severity.  

11860 Vista Del Sol, Ste. 128 Chiari Malformation Brain Tissue and The Spinal Canal
 

Diagnosis

Diagnosis is done with a magnetic resonance imaging test or MRI. The MRI will show the various parts of the brain, skull, spinal cord, and spinal canal. They will be able to see abnormalities that could point to Chiari malformation.

 

Treatment

The recommended treatment depends on the severity. If pain is presenting a doctor could recommend pain medications to help manage the pain. Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory meds could also be recommended to reduce inflammation. Analgesics or pain killers can be recommended. Often both non-steroidal anti-inflammatories and analgesics are available in over-the-counter and prescription. The doctor will figure out the best medication treatment plan.

Surgery can be used to relieve symptoms and is the only way to relieve the pressure on the spinal cord and nerves. The goal is to stop the malformation from worsening. Surgeons use a posterior fossa decompression procedure. The surgeon removes part of the skull to make more room for the brain to sit in. This takes the pressure off the brain and spinal cord, and should reduce the neurological symptoms and problems. The surgeon may increase the size of the dura or the sac around the brain.

Laminectomies at C1 and C2, which are the first and second levels of the neck and are utilized to make more room for the brain. The surgeon will place a patch that is made from animal or synthetic tissue that will grow into the dura. The patch makes the dura bigger, which allows more room for the brain. Not all surgeries involve the dural patch.


 

Neck Pain Chiropractic Care

 


 

Dr. Alex Jimenez’s Blog Post Disclaimer

The scope of our information is limited to chiropractic, musculoskeletal, physical medicines, wellness, and sensitive health issues and/or functional medicine articles, topics, and discussions. We use functional health & wellness protocols to treat and support care for injuries or disorders of the musculoskeletal system. Our posts, topics, subjects, and insights cover clinical matters, issues, and topics that relate and support directly or indirectly our clinical scope of practice.*

Our office has made a reasonable attempt to provide supportive citations and has identified the relevant research study or studies supporting our posts. We also make copies of supporting research studies available to the board and or the public upon request. We understand that we cover matters that require an additional explanation as to how it may assist in a particular care plan or treatment protocol; therefore, to further discuss the subject matter above, please feel free to ask Dr. Alex Jimenez or contact us at 915-850-0900. The provider(s) Licensed in Texas& New Mexico*

Sarcopenia Muscle Mass Loss With Chronic Back Pain

11860 Vista Del Sol, Ste. 128 Sarcopenia Muscle Mass Loss With Chronic Back Pain
Sarcopenia means the loss of muscle tissue/mass from the natural aging process. Something that all of us are going through. However, when chronic back pain is involved it can speed up the natural process, which can lead to various health issues. Keeping the body fit and the spine healthy is the objective with approaches that can be utilized and employed to help maintain muscle mass. By the time an individual turns 30, the muscles are large and strong. But going into the 30s, individuals begin to lose muscle mass and function. Individuals that are physically inactive can lose up to 5% of muscle mass every ten years after 30. Even those who are regularly active, still lose some muscle. Sarcopenia typically kicks-in around age 75-80. However, it could speed up as early as 65. It becomes a factor in bone frailty and increases the risk of falls and fractures in older adults.  
11860 Vista Del Sol, Ste. 128 Sarcopenia Muscle Mass Loss With Chronic Back Pain
 

Muscle Tissue Changes and Back Pain

Loss of muscle mass causes individuals to have a lesser degree of strength and function. As the decline continues, mobility lessens, and disability increases. With less muscle strength individuals become perfect candidates for falls/injury/s and become more prone to weight pain. Body composition shifts can play a major role in issues like spinal stenosis and degenerative disc disease. Bone density also decreases with age increasing the risk of mobility issues. This means less activity which can make back pain worse and keeps the degenerative cycle going. The back pain intensifies, physical function is very limited, and low bone mineral density brings down an individual’s quality of life.

Symptoms and Causes

Symptoms include:
  • Weakness
  • Loss of stamina
With reduced activity muscle mass becomes further shrunk. Sarcopenia is seen more often in individuals that are inactive. However, it is also seen in individuals that are physically active on a regular basis. This suggests that there are other factors involved. Researchers think these could be:
  • The ability to turn protein into energy is decreased
  • There are not enough calories/protein per day to maintain muscle mass
  • A reduction in the nerve cells that are responsible for sending signals from the brain to the muscles when moving, contracting, extending, etc
  • Low concentration of certain hormones, including:
  1. Growth hormone
  2. Testosterone
  3. Insulin-like growth factor

Prevention

Because it can affect younger individuals as well, specifically those who are leading sedentary lifestyles and are overweight, prevention is the key. It is a domino effect that:
  • Starts with reduced activity
  • That leads to weight gain
  • Causing even less activity
When the body’s muscles are not being used they begin to atrophy. Fortunately, the loss can be reversible to a certain degree. Helping to build the muscle mass back up and help prevent sarcopenia is the goal.

 
11860 Vista Del Sol, Ste. 128 Sarcopenia Muscle Mass Loss With Chronic Back Pain
 

Strength training

Muscles need a degree of stress to grow, which is then followed by recovery. Low-impact training programs/exercises performed at least two to three days per week can help keep the muscles healthy and in top form.

General physical activity

Exercise does not have to only be a regimented training form. Being active means keeping the body moving and mobile on a regular basis. This can be gardening, vacuuming, taking a walk around the neighborhood, parking far away when shopping to walk more, taking the stairs instead of the elevator. Anything that involves moving the body regularly and keeps the muscles active will help in the prevention process.

Protein

There is a wasting syndrome known as Cachexia. There is a connection between protein consumption and muscle mass. Older adults are at risk of low protein intake because they do not synthesize amino acids as effectively as they used to. Whey protein is recommended specifically because it creates and maintains high concentrations of amino acids in the blood. Other protein choices include:
  • Greek yogurt
  • Peanut butter
  • Eggs
  • Nuts
  • Seeds
  • Beans
  • Lean animal proteins

Resistance Training

Sarcopenia prevention will promote better back/general health for every age group. However, it is crucial for those who are experiencing accelerated muscle loss like individuals over 50 and especially after 60. Resistance/strength training or some form of physical activity done on a regular basis can significantly slow the decline. But heavy-weights are not necessary. Older individuals might believe weight training means they have to lift heavy with fewer reps and more weight. It is actually the opposite, with more reps and lighter weight. An example could be doing 20 reps with a 5-pound weight instead of 5 reps with a 20-pound weight. The total amount of weight being lifted is the same in both cases. This approach benefits the individual because of the less load/strain on the bones and joints. It also allows older individuals to do more sessions per week, keeping the active overall. Those experiencing sarcopenia, and with lumbar stenosis, to do exercises that challenge the muscles without adding additional pressure on the joints. This could be:
  • Walking in a swimming pool
  • Cycling
  • Pilates
  • Yoga
Bodyweight/calisthenic exercises like pushups, squats, and wall slides can also be beneficial. The focus should be on regular activity that can progress slowly, and promotes tone without risk of injury. Muscle tone is maintained by activity and is essential for everyone. Get a routine, keep moving and the body will benefit greatly.
 

Sports Injury Chiropractic Treatment


 

Dr. Alex Jimenez’s Blog Post Disclaimer

The scope of our information is limited to chiropractic, musculoskeletal, physical medicines, wellness, and sensitive health issues and/or functional medicine articles, topics, and discussions. We use functional health & wellness protocols to treat and support care for injuries or disorders of the musculoskeletal system. Our posts, topics, subjects, and insights cover clinical matters, issues, and topics that relate and support directly or indirectly our clinical scope of practice.* Our office has made a reasonable attempt to provide supportive citations and has identified the relevant research study or studies supporting our posts. We also make copies of supporting research studies available to the board and or the public upon request. We understand that we cover matters that require an additional explanation as to how it may assist in a particular care plan or treatment protocol; therefore, to further discuss the subject matter above, please feel free to ask Dr. Alex Jimenez or contact us at 915-850-0900. The provider(s) Licensed in Texas& New Mexico*

Taking An Active Role In Personal Spinal Health

11860 Vista Del Sol, Ste. 128 Taking An Active Role In Personal Spinal Health
Taking an active role in personal spinal health could mean the difference between having to deal/manage back pain for the rest of your life and not having to. Most of us have experienced some form of back pain, whether lifting an object, bending, reaching, twisting, etc. Fortunately, it is usually not serious and we move on with our lives. However, not paying attention to those not so serious backaches can lead to chronic backaches that can lead to serious chronic back pain. Chronic backache/s can be annoying, frustrating, and debilitating, especially when the cause is not obvious, cannot be found, or figured out. When back pain occurs from trauma or an automobile accident it’s a lot easier to diagnose. But when it is the result of a gradual build-up of activities like sitting all day at a desk, in a truck or lifting objects, loading, unloading, pushing, pulling, stocking for several years, it could be a lot more serious than the individual might think. This is because although they are barely beginning to feel the ache or pain, the damage has been ongoing/worsening and has finally reared its ugly head.  
11860 Vista Del Sol, Ste. 128 Taking An Active Role In Personal Spinal Health
 

Finding the Right Help

Getting on the right track means searching for a spinal professional that can identify and treat the source of the back pain, help with posture, diet advice, and help reach optimal health. Finding the source of the pain can be a challenge, but it is not impossible. The key is finding a knowledgeable, experienced back pain specialist and taking an active role in your spine’s health. Chiropractors, doctors, and physicians begin with at least 4-6 weeks of non-invasive treatment. These start with tests, scans, x-rays, then move on to treatment, which can consist of ice/heat, physical therapy, adjustments, re-alignment combined with exercises, stretches. Prescription medication/s or surgery is the last option for fear of worsening conditions along with medication abuse. This approach has seen an increase in relief and favorable outcomes.

Patient Active Role

Many individuals have gone down the path of being over-medicated and are exhausted with the whole experience of being constipated, constant brain fog, etc. Those same individuals are taking that active role and getting involved by dealing with their back pain in a natural non-invasive way. Preparing before meeting with a spine professional is important to give as much information as possible.

Tips

Preparation

  • Write down notes about what is being felt in and around the body, not just the back. This is because of the psychological aspect of pain, which can manifest in a variety of ways.

Try To Go Back To When The Pain Started

  • Think about when the pain first began
  • Sitting at work/home one day when there was what you thought was a little shift or tingle
  • Sports activity
  • Exercising
  • Popping, clicking, grinding sensations and sounds
  • Warming, electrical, shooting sensation/s pain
  • Tingling/numbness in the leg, foot, toes
  • Try to describe all the details with the doctor/chiropractor even what you might consider trivial
 

Emotions/Stress Triggers need to be taken into account

  • Work
  • Bills
  • Marriage
  • Divorce
  • Children
  • Major life changes and stress affects the whole body, especially the spine

Family Friend Perspective and Support

Bringing along a close family member or friend that knows your activity habits could help the doctor get a better idea of what is causing the pain. Family or friends can remember a trip, fall, dance moment that didn’t go so well, work accident, etc.

Medical History

Prior medical injuries and conditions will help provide additional information as to whether there is a pattern when back pain strikes. This can be extremely important even if it does not seem to be related to the pain symptoms. Tell the doctor about any physical therapy or other holistic/conservative treatments performed before and after the pain began. Also, inform them of any medications, supplements, vitamins, herbs, over-the-counter medications that were taken prior to the pain and currently being taken. If there has been unexplained weight loss, fever, urination/bowel changes, should also be discussed.

Physical Tests

Unless the patient is in too much pain, the meeting with the chiropractic physician will be active, meaning the doctor may have the patient perform a series of movements like:
  • Sitting
  • Standing
  • Walking
  • Bending forward, backward, and to the side
  • Lifting the legs straight up while standing and lying down
  • Inform the doctor of any numbness or tingling pain while performing these musculoskeletal exercises/tests.
With a patient that can’t perform the exercises, the doctor will examine the patient while lying down, by carefully and slowly palpating the painful area/s, moving the leg/s, and raising the patient up, all the while taking notes of what position/s cause discomfort and pain.  
11860 Vista Del Sol, Ste. 128 Taking An Active Role In Personal Spinal Health
 

Options

Depending on the physician’s assessment, initial treatment will take time, require the individual to take an active role, and possibly recommend the individual try different treatment options. Ask the doctor all the questions you have during the visit like:
  • Could there be more than one cause for my back pain?
  • Do the treatments hurt?
  • The treatment will keep me pain-free or just tolerable?
  • Are there self-therapies to assist healing and recovery?
  • If seeing a general physician you could ask for a recommended spine specialist
The ultimate goal is for the individual to live a happy, fulfilling life that is pain-free. The doctor will do everything they can to bring an optimum level of care. If the quality of life still does not improve or when various attempts for pain relief have proven unsuccessful, then a doctor could recommend stronger medications and surgical options. Don’t wait to get professional medical help! The longer an individual waits the worse the cause of the back pain gets. Get involved and take an active role in your spinal health.

Personal Injury Chiropractic Care

 
 

Dr. Alex Jimenez’s Blog Post Disclaimer

The scope of our information is limited to chiropractic, musculoskeletal, physical medicines, wellness, and sensitive health issues and/or functional medicine articles, topics, and discussions. We use functional health & wellness protocols to treat and support care for injuries or disorders of the musculoskeletal system. Our posts, topics, subjects, and insights cover clinical matters, issues, and topics that relate and support directly or indirectly our clinical scope of practice.* Our office has made a reasonable attempt to provide supportive citations and has identified the relevant research study or studies supporting our posts. We also make copies of supporting research studies available to the board and or the public upon request. We understand that we cover matters that require an additional explanation as to how it may assist in a particular care plan or treatment protocol; therefore, to further discuss the subject matter above, please feel free to ask Dr. Alex Jimenez or contact us at 915-850-0900. The provider(s) Licensed in Texas& New Mexico*

Analgesics Pain Symptom Relieving Medications

11860 Vista Del Sol, Ste. 128 Analgesics Pain Symptom Relieving Medications
Analgesics are pain-relieving medications, also known as painkillers. These can be over-the-counter and prescription medications. Either could be part of a treatment plan for spine-related pain. Individuals dealing with back or neck conditions, typically take analgesics to reduce symptoms.
  • Analgesics are available over-the-counter/OTC and with a prescription
  • Prescription analgesics usually include the more powerful form of over-the-counter medications
  • Various analgesics are available in topical form
  • Analgesics can be specialized with some to relieve pain, with others reducing inflammation/pain
11860 Vista Del Sol, Ste. 128 Analgesics Pain Symptom Relieving Medications
 

Over-the-counter

Acetaminophen, Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, and topical analgesics are the most commonly used medications for various pain symptoms. Over-the-counter analgesics are most effective when taken at the first sign/presentation of acute pain. Whiplash, along with muscle sprains and strains are common injuries known to cause short term pain that can be mild to severe. Follow the medication’s instructions on dosage recommendations and precautions. If the medication does not work or helps manage the pain, and/or pain symptoms worsen, contact your healthcare provider. This could be an indicator that a more powerful prescription analgesic is needed to help manage the pain, along with added therapy like physical therapy, and chiropractic to help avoid dependence on the prescription meds.

Acetaminophen

Tylenol is one form of medication taken for different types of pain and is one of the most popular over-the-counter analgesics. Acetaminophen’s purpose is exclusively to relieve pain. It does not reduce inflammation.

Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs – NSAIDs

Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs work to reduce inflammation and pain. Types of over-the-counter These include:
  • Aspirin
  • Ibuprofen
  • Naproxen

Topical analgesics

Topical analgesics like capsaicin cream and salicylates are an alternative to analgesics taken by mouth. These creams, balms, gels, and sprays are applied to the painful area. It is a very common application and is widely used for joint, muscle, and back pain. Salicylates are plant-based chemicals that operate to decrease the body’s production of prostaglandins. These are lipids that let the body know that there is a problem causing inflammation and pain.  
 

Prescription

A doctor could prescribe an analgesic as part of a treatment plan to help manage short-term and chronic pain. It is extremely important to precisely follow the doctor’s instructions on how much and when to take the medication. Remember that any of these medications have the potential for side effects, which includes the risk of negative interactions when taken with other meds. Be sure to talk with a doctor about potential risks, and keep them informed about all medications like blood pressure and diabetes meds and natural herbs/vitamins/supplements taken for other medical conditions.

COX-2 Inhibitors

Cyclo-oxygenase-2 or COX-2 inhibitors are a prescription NSAID medication type that is formulated to target specific enzymes that trigger inflammation. Inflammation is not just a symptom but can also be a cause of pain related to many different spinal disorders. COX-2 inhibitors have a lower risk of causing/contributing to gastrointestinal problems. There are other potential side effects and risks associated with COX-2 inhibitors. Potential side effects include an increased risk of cardiovascular problems, like a heart attack or blood clots. COX-2 inhibitors reduce the risk of stomach problems than classic NSAIDs but if gastrointestinal conditions exist to talk with a doctor before taking these medications.  
11860 Vista Del Sol, Ste. 128 Analgesics Pain Symptom Relieving Medications
 

Opioids

These are highly potent analgesics and are no longer the first type of pain-relieving medication that a doctor prescribes. They are now to be the last resort for reducing moderate to severe pain symptoms. These medications work by decreasing the perception and reaction to the pain. Opioids are prescribed for short-term use following surgical procedures and trauma. However, there are different situations where use is appropriate. When opioids are recommended, the doctor will begin with the lowest strength/dosage to manage the pain. Types of opioids include:
  • Codeine
  • Hydrocodone
  • Hydromorphone
  • Oxycodone
  • Meperidine
  • Tramadol
Opioids have an increased risk for addiction and abuse. If an opioid-based medication is prescribed the medication is safe and effective as long as it is used exactly as the doctor instructs. Side effects can include:
  • Drowsiness
  • Constipation
  • Nausea
  • Euphoria
  • Slowed breathing

A Pain Helper

Analgesic medications are commonly used for various types of pain-causing conditions. When they are used properly with a doctor’s supervision they are safe and effective at managing pain and discomfort. If new symptoms present and/or the pain worsens or becomes different contact your doctor on appropriate instructions.

Neck and Low Pain Treatment

 
 

Dr. Alex Jimenez’s Blog Post Disclaimer

The scope of our information is limited to chiropractic, musculoskeletal, physical medicines, wellness, and sensitive health issues and/or functional medicine articles, topics, and discussions. We use functional health & wellness protocols to treat and support care for injuries or disorders of the musculoskeletal system. Our posts, topics, subjects, and insights cover clinical matters, issues, and topics that relate and support directly or indirectly our clinical scope of practice.* Our office has made a reasonable attempt to provide supportive citations and has identified the relevant research study or studies supporting our posts. We also make copies of supporting research studies available to the board and or the public upon request. We understand that we cover matters that require an additional explanation as to how it may assist in a particular care plan or treatment protocol; therefore, to further discuss the subject matter above, please feel free to ask Dr. Alex Jimenez or contact us at 915-850-0900. The provider(s) Licensed in Texas& New Mexico*

The Spinal Muscles: An Extensive Guide

11860 Vista Del Sol, Ste. 128 The Spinal Muscles: An Extensive Guide
The spinal muscles and ligaments work in conjunction to help support the spine, maintain an upright posture, and control movements during activity and rest. The muscles are named based on shape, location, or a combination. Further categorization factors include muscle functions like flexion, extension, or rotation. Skeletal muscle is a form of striated muscle tissue that is voluntarily controlled by the somatic nervous system. Striated means it is striped in appearance. Most skeletal muscles are attached to bones by collagen fibers known as tendons.  
Vertebral Muscle Types Location
Forward flexors Anterior
Lateral flexors Lateral
Rotators Lateral
Extensors Posterior
 
11860 Vista Del Sol, Ste. 128 The Spinal Muscles: An Extensive Guide
 
It has the fastest contraction rate of all muscles. Before muscle/s contract, a nerve impulse starts in the brain and runs through the spinal cord to the muscle. For the muscles to contract and work properly they need energy/fuel. Mitochondria produce Adenosine triphosphate chemical cells that are needed for energy. Adenosine triphosphate is made as the mitochondria burn glucose or sugar. The blood vessels deliver the oxygen and nutrients that the mitochondria need to maintain a steady supply of adenosine triphosphate.  

The Posterior Cervical and Upper Thoracic Spinal Muscles

  1. Semispinalis Capitus – controls the head rotation and backward pulls
  2. Iliocostalis Cervicis – extends the cervical vertebrae
  3. The Longissimus Cervicus – extends the cervical vertebrae
  4. Longissimus Capitus – controls the head’s rotation and backward pulls
  5. Longissimus Thoracis – controls the extension/lateral flexion of the vertebral column and rib rotation
  6. Iliocostalis Thoracis – controls the extension/lateral flexion of the vertebral column and rib rotation
  7. Semispinalis Thoracis – extends and rotates the vertebral column
 

Muscles of the Spinal Column

 

Cervical muscles

Cervical Muscles Function Nerve
Sternocleidomastoid Extends and rotates the head and flexes the vertebral column C2, C3
Scalenus Flexes and rotates the neck Lower cervical
Spinalis Cervicis Extends and rotates the head Middle/lower cervical
Spinalis Capitus Extends and rotates the head Middle/lower cervical
Semispinalis Cervicis Extends and rotates the vertebral column Middle/lower cervical
Semispinalis Capitus Rotates the head and pulls backward C1-C5
Splenius Cervicis Extends the vertebral column Middle/lower cervical
Longus Colli Cervicis Flexes the cervical vertebrae C2-C7
Longus Capitus Flexes the head C1-C3
Rectus Capitus Anterior Flexes the head C2, C3
Rectus Capitus Lateralis Bends the head laterally C2, C3
Iliocostalis Cervicis Extends the cervical vertebrae Middle/lower cervical
Longissimus Cervicis Extends the cervical vertebrae Middle/lower cervical
Longissimus Capitus Rotates the head and pulls backward Middle/lower cervical
Rectus Capitus Posterior Major Extends and rotates the head Suboccipital
Rectus Capitus Posterior Minor Extends the head Suboccipital
Obliquus Capitus Inferior Rotates the atlas Suboccipital
Obliquus Capitus Superior Extends and bends the head laterally Suboccipital
 
CervicalMusculatureDiagram ChiropractorElPaso

Thoracic Muscles

Thoracic muscles Function Nerve
Longissimus Thoracis Extension, lateral flexion of the vertebral column, and rib rotation Dorsal primary divisions of the spinal nerves
Iliocostalis Thoracis Extension, lateral flexion of the vertebral column, and rib rotation Dorsal primary divisions of the spinal nerves
Spinalis Thoracis Extends the vertebral column Dorsal primary divisions of the spinal nerves
Semispinalis Thoracis Extends and rotates the vertebral column Dorsal primary divisions of the spinal nerves
Rotatores Thoracis Extends and rotates the vertebral column Dorsal primary divisions of the spinal nerves
11860 Vista Del Sol, Ste. 128 The Spinal Muscles: An Extensive Guide
 

Lumbar muscles

Lumbar muscles Function Nerve
Psoas Major Flexes the thigh at the hip joint and the vertebral column L2, L3, sometimes L1 or L4
Intertransversarii Lateralis Lateral flexion of the vertebral column The ventral primary division of the spinal nerves
Quadratus Lumborum Lateral flexion of the vertebral column T12, L1
Interspinales Extends the vertebral column Dorsal primary divisions of the spinal nerves
Intertransversarii Mediales Lateral flexion of the vertebral column Dorsal primary divisions of the spinal nerves
Multifidus Extends and rotates the vertebral column Dorsal primary divisions of the spinal nerves
Longissimus Lumborum Extends and rotates the vertebral column Dorsal primary divisions of the spinal nerves
Iliocostalis Lumborum Extension, lateral flexion of the vertebral column, and rib rotation Dorsal primary divisions of the spinal nerves
Blog Image  Psoas Muscle
 

Muscle Fascia Fibrous Tissue

  • Fascia is the thickened connective tissue that surrounds a muscle or muscle group. Superficial fascia is directly under the skin.
  • Epimysium surrounds the skeletal muscle.
  • Perimysium is the sheath that groups the muscle fibers into bundles.
  • Endomysium is another type of connective tissue that sheaths each muscle fiber.
  The cause of back pain and spinal muscle spasm/s can be caused by overuse, automobile accident, personal, work, or sports injury. The root cause of muscle spasm/s is usually a consequence of an injury to a structure within the lumbar spine. If there have been one or more episodes of muscle spasm in the low back, chances are it will re-occur. The muscles in the low back work together with the abdominal muscles. The spinal muscles add stability by maintaining an erect spine and maintain balance.

Back Pain Specialist

 

 

Dr. Alex Jimenez’s Blog Post Disclaimer

The scope of our information is limited to chiropractic, musculoskeletal, physical medicines, wellness, and sensitive health issues and/or functional medicine articles, topics, and discussions. We use functional health & wellness protocols to treat and support care for injuries or disorders of the musculoskeletal system. Our posts, topics, subjects, and insights cover clinical matters, issues, and topics that relate and support directly or indirectly our clinical scope of practice.* Our office has made a reasonable attempt to provide supportive citations and has identified the relevant research study or studies supporting our posts. We also make copies of supporting research studies available to the board and or the public upon request. We understand that we cover matters that require an additional explanation as to how it may assist in a particular care plan or treatment protocol; therefore, to further discuss the subject matter above, please feel free to ask Dr. Alex Jimenez or contact us at 915-850-0900. The provider(s) Licensed in Texas& New Mexico*

Chiropractic Physicians* / Chiropractic Doctors and What They Do

11860 Vista Del Sol, Ste. 128 Chiropractic Physicians and What They Do

Alexander Jimenez grew up knowing he was going to be a chiropractic physician. As a child, Dr. Jimenez’s grandmother experienced pain symptoms and would ask little Alex to massage the painful areas. His grandmother found relief and Dr. Jimenez began to think about how he could help others experiencing pain.  

11860 Vista Del Sol, Ste. 128 Chiropractic Physicians and What They Do
 

It was through this care that Dr. Jimenz realized being a health care chiropractic practitioner was the best way to help people. Like his grandfather, many others have experienced profound results thanks to chiropractic treatment. Dr. Jimenez knew that he wanted to be able to treat patients naturally. He would learn and develop the skills required to practice as a chiropractic physician. He enrolled in a university chiropractic program, graduated, has put in almost 30 years of work, and the rest is history. What to know about chiropractic physicians.

 

A Chiropractic Doctor & Chiropractic Physician*

A Doctor of Chiropractic also known as a D.C. is far more than a back doctor. Chiropractors study the same basic and complex sciences as doctors of medicine or MDs. They are trained in the latest techniques and approaches, diagnostic tools, and developing effective treatment plans to manage various health conditions. However, chiropractic physicians specialize in non-invasive/non-surgical/non-pharmacological health care protocols and focus on whole-body health and natural healing. Wide range of factors that can impact an individual’s health like:

  • Biomechanical dysfunction
  • Diet
  • Genetics
  • Trauma
  • Hygiene
  • Emotions
  • Environment – Home/work
  • Infection/s
  • Lack of exercise
  • Posture
  • Stress levels

Based on these factors a chiropractor is able to determine the most effective, beneficial natural treatment plan.

 

Work

Chiropractic physicians encourage individuals to look at natural, medication/surgery-free approaches to improve health, reduce, and alleviate painful symptoms. They are often called upon for preventive and rehabilitative health care.  

chiropractic care el paso tx.

  Chiropractic treatment is responsible for thousands of back surgeries being avoided, as well as injuries being prevented with conservative care. Chiropractors perform manual, and tool-assisted adjustments of the spine and the body’s other joints. Depending on their training, they could practice:

  • Acupuncture
  • Functional medicine
  • Nutritional medicine
  • Physical rehabilitation
  • Provide supplements like vitamins and natural botanicals

Chiropractors utilize diagnostic tests like X-rays, ultrasound, and check blood pressure. They can order and interpret blood samples, urine samples, and other medical lab tests. Chiropractic physicians are able to:

  • Practice as primary-care physicians in most states
  • Can become licensed in all states
  • Own general or specialized practice
  • Work as an associate in a group practice
  • Specialize in fields like:
  1. Sports medicine
  2. Acupuncture
  3. Pediatrics
  4. Women’s health
  5. Neurology
  • Hospital work
  • Wellness institutions
  • Veteran care
  • Multi-disciplinary and integrative clinics
  • Conduct research
  • Teach at chiropractic medical colleges
11860 Vista Del Sol, Ste. 128 Chiropractic Physicians and What They Do
 

Treatment

Doctors of chiropractic are able to treat individuals of all ages, and a variety of health conditions. Most know about chiropractors and their expertise in treating back pain, neck pain, and headaches. However, chiropractors can also treat many types of injuries and disorders involving the musculoskeletal system. They can:

  • Release tight muscles
  • Stretch out ligaments
  • Return joint mobility
  • Relieve overuse/repetitive injuries
  • Ease migraines
  • Rehabilitate/Prevent sports injuries
  • Treat automobile accident injuries
  • Reduce/Alleviate arthritis

The Most Effective Chiropractor

 


 

Dr. Alex Jimenez’s Blog Post Disclaimer

The scope of our information is limited to chiropractic, musculoskeletal, physical medicines, wellness, and sensitive health issues and/or functional medicine articles, topics, and discussions. We use functional health & wellness protocols to treat and support care for injuries or disorders of the musculoskeletal system. Our posts, topics, subjects, and insights cover clinical matters, issues, and topics that relate and support directly or indirectly our clinical scope of practice.*

Our office has made a reasonable attempt to provide supportive citations and has identified the relevant research study or studies supporting our posts. We also make copies of supporting research studies available to the board and or the public upon request. We understand that we cover matters that require an additional explanation as to how it may assist in a particular care plan or treatment protocol; therefore, to further discuss the subject matter above, please feel free to ask Dr. Alex Jimenez or contact us at 915-850-0900. The provider(s) Licensed in Texas& New Mexico*

NOTICE: The Texas Board of Chiropractic and The Texas Supreme Court defines a Chiropractor as a Doctor. New Mexico State Bylaws and New Mexico Chiropractic State Board define a Chiropractor as a Chiropractic Physician*.

Finding the Right Spinal Surgeon Asking the Right Questions

11860 Vista Del Sol, Ste. 128 Finding the Right Spinal Surgeon Asking the Right Questions
Patient consulting a doctor in clinic
Finding the right surgeon that specializes in an individual’s specific spinal conditions and physical health means doing some research. There are several types of procedures for spinal problems. The type of surgery depends on the condition and an individual’s medical history. If surgery is recommended for a lumbar herniated disc or LHD combined with sciatica here are a few things to think about.  
11860 Vista Del Sol, Ste. 128 Finding the Right Spinal Surgeon Asking the Right Questions
 

Researching a spine surgeon

First and foremost look for surgeons with:
  • Medical credentials like are they board-certified or board-eligible
  • Completed a fellowship in spine surgery
  • Devotes at least 50% of their practice to spinal conditions
  • Specializes in treating herniated disc/s and sciatica. This means they will have added/specialized knowledge and expertise.
It is extremely important that an individual feels comfortable and feels they are able to communicate freely with the surgeon. A professionally qualified surgeon should:
  • Spend adequate time with the individual
  • Answer all questions
  • Provide all information needed about the condition and treatment
  • Listen to what the individual has to say
  • Is open-minded
  • Is not hard to get in contact with
  • Has experience in the latest methods and techniques

What to look at and think about

Individuals can feel uncomfortable asking questions, but thorough communication is key. Remember, it is your body, and it is your right to know the details of the spinal disorder, along with non-surgical and surgical approaches to treatment that are available. There is time to consider the options and make an informed decision about the treatment plan as most spinal procedures are elective. Ask the surgeon all the questions you have to help decide wisely and with confidence. Make sure they address all concerns, and any others not listed.

The surgeon’s specialization/focus

Orthopedic surgeons and neurosurgeons perform spinal procedures. Each will have a specific interest and expertise in certain spinal condition/s. For example, some surgeons may specialize in treating adult or pediatric patients, and some may only treat either lumbar/low back or cervical/neck conditions. Within those groups, some focus on:
  • Spinal deformities
  • Tumors
  • Myelopathy a spinal cord disease
  • Specific spinal cord diseases

Minimal invasive surgery option

Minimally invasive spine involves tiny incisions, that reduces the recovery time needed to heal. With this type, individuals can be up and walking within hours after surgery. Unfortunately, not all conditions can take this approach.

Is the surgery absolutely necessary, or can it be treated non-surgically?

Sciatica and herniated discs can be quite painful and cause disability. Never rush into surgery just to relieve symptoms. As surgery can cause other types of pain symptoms and issues. Herniation and sciatica can be resolved with:
  • Chiropractic
  • Physical therapy
  • Medications
  • Injections
  • Lifestyle changes
  • Diet adjustments
  • Regular exercise
  • Weight loss
However, if there are neurologic symptoms, like weakness in the leg, foot, numbness, or loss of bladder or bowel control – this is considered a medical emergency – then surgery is absolutely needed.  
11860 Vista Del Sol, Ste. 128 Finding the Right Spinal Surgeon Asking the Right Questions
 

The number of similar procedures performed

The surgeon’s experience is very important. The more experienced, the better. Ask if they can refer to other patients who have had similar procedures.

Recovery time

Every patient is unique, as is the type of surgery, and recovery times. They all vary accordingly. General health, physical condition, and the severity of the disorder play a role in how long and how involved recovery time will be. Experienced surgeons can provide more specific answers concerning recovery/healing time.

Complication rate

All surgeries carry some risk of complication. Complication rates that are more than 10% is a red flag. Possible post-surgery complications.

Infection rate

Surgeons should have an infection rate lower than 10%. However higher rates do not always mean that surgeon is at fault as higher rates can come from performing highly complex procedures. Another reason for high infection rates could be the patients themselves like smokers or individuals with diabetes have increased risks for infection. However, do not feel uncomfortable asking the surgeon to explain a high infection rate.

Decide to not opt for spine surgery

As a surgeon produces a diagnosis, they should present a recommended treatment plan, including alternative treatments/therapies. Ask for another explanation of any part of the evaluation, diagnosis, or available treatment options.

Get a second opinion

A second opinion should be encouraged. A second opinion can reinforce the surgeon’s recommendations and offers a new perspective. The surgeon should be comfortable with a second opinion. This does not mean that the individual does not trust the surgeon. It does mean that there is considerable interest in achieving optimal health and making sure that surgery is the absolute right thing to do. Pass on surgeons that discourage or disapprove of second opinions and continue looking.
 

Whiplash Chiropractic Massage Therapy

 

 

Dr. Alex Jimenez’s Blog Post Disclaimer

The scope of our information is limited to chiropractic, musculoskeletal, physical medicines, wellness, and sensitive health issues and/or functional medicine articles, topics, and discussions. We use functional health & wellness protocols to treat and support care for injuries or disorders of the musculoskeletal system. Our posts, topics, subjects, and insights cover clinical matters, issues, and topics that relate and support directly or indirectly our clinical scope of practice.* Our office has made a reasonable attempt to provide supportive citations and has identified the relevant research study or studies supporting our posts. We also make copies of supporting research studies available to the board and or the public upon request. We understand that we cover matters that require an additional explanation as to how it may assist in a particular care plan or treatment protocol; therefore, to further discuss the subject matter above, please feel free to ask Dr. Alex Jimenez or contact us at 915-850-0900. The provider(s) Licensed in Texas& New Mexico*

Hip Issues Could Be Source of Lower Back Pain

11860 Vista Del Sol, Ste. 128 Hip Issues Could Be Source of Lower Back Pain
Physiotherapist giving back massage to senior patient in clinic
Back discomfort and pain could be caused by hip issues and could be resolved with hip replacement. According to a recent study, a total hip replacement solved back pain in four out of five individuals dealing with spinal discomfort and pain. When the hip/s are stiff or cannot move normally, this places added pressure on the spine. Studies show that low back pain was resolved in 82% of individuals after a total hip replacement known as total hip arthroplasty or THA. The body is designed as a fluid chain with fluid motion connecting the neck all the way down to the toes. When a region like the hip tightens/stiffens, it generates added stress/pressure on the other areas of the body, which in this case happens to be the lower spine. Individuals with mild arthritis of the spine are able to experience increased pain reduction than individuals with severe arthritis. An insight into the relationship between the hips and low back that can lead to accurate diagnoses and optimal treatment plans.  
11860 Vista Del Sol, Ste. 128 Hip Issues Could Be Source of Lower Back Pain
 

Hip Issues

The hip/s move with the lower back during activities like walking, sitting, bending, etc. Tight muscles, normal wear-and-tear, and osteoarthritis can reduce hip movement, forcing the lower back to make awkward and poor posture causing adjustments. Individuals usually relieve the painful position by increasing the curve of their lower back. If an individual has severe arthritis of the hip, they put a lot of stress and pressure on the low back that often results in low back pain. Advanced hip osteoarthritis is the breakdown of joint cartilage and the most common type of arthritis. Individuals with this type experience low back pain 50% of the time, and even higher depending on the individual’s condition. 80% to 90% of individuals with hip or knee arthritis, unfortunately, develop low back arthritis. There is not yet a clear reason as to why this occurs. It is theorized that some osteoarthritis risk factors like obesity and high-impact/force activities can be modified with lifestyle adjustments. Other risk factors that include injury, trauma, age, and congenital conditions like hip dysplasia, cannot be avoided. Hip osteoarthritis isn’t the only hip issue that can also cause lower back pain. Other hip issues.

Sacroiliac joint dysfunction

The sacroiliac joint connects the sacrum to the pelvis. It is a shock absorber between the upper body, the pelvis and can stiffen with time. Sacroiliac joint pain affects around 15% to 25% of individuals with low back pain. It worsens when climbing stairs, getting up from a seated position or running. Symptoms include:
  • Low back pain
  • Pain in buttock/s
  • Groin pain
  • Stiffness
  • Instability

Piriformis syndrome

About 200,000 individuals each year are affected with piriformis syndrome and is often misdiagnosed as symptoms resemble sciatica. What happens is the piriformis muscle, which connects the sacrum to the top of the femur, tightens/irritates the sciatic nerve. Symptoms are often mistaken for sciatica with pain in the buttocks, numbness, and tingling that travels down the back of the leg and into the feet.  
11860 Vista Del Sol, Ste. 128 Hip Issues Could Be Source of Lower Back Pain
 

Diagnosis

A doctor or chiropractor will use a combination of diagnostic tools. This typically includes a physical exam, X-rays with other specific tests to help identify the source of pain. What typically happens is a patient will undergo a hip and lumbar spine X-ray, but the thoracic spine, pelvis, and hip areas are missed. Getting the middle segment is critical to see how the spine and hips are working together. It is critical to understand the hip-spine connection. All spine patients should have X-rays of the hips to make sure any problems don’t go undetected. The overlap of symptoms with these two areas could be overlooked. If necessary a diagnostic injection into the hip joint can help precisely locate the pain source. This can be done at the clinic or doctor’s office using ultrasound or X-ray to guide the needle. If no pain relief results from the injection, hip replacement is still not considered because the pain could be coming from the spine. A critical part of the diagnosis is not just imaging. One of the most important parts is getting a thorough history of symptoms. X-rays and MRI show what the problem could be, however, the symptoms could coming from another area.

Treatment Options

Before total hip replacement is considered there are nonsurgical approaches to be considered. All diagnoses should start with conservative treatment. Physical therapy, chiropractic, gait training, and core strengthening can optimize the spine to better manage hip issues and arthritis. Conservative therapies could also include:
  • Weight loss
  • Activity modification like walking instead of running
  • Anti-inflammatory medication
  • Cortisone injections
Total hip replacement is the last option for individuals experiencing pain, difficulty walking, and limited mobility. The procedure removes the damaged cartilage and bone from the hip joint. This includes the head of the thighbone along with the socket where it fits and replaces it with artificial parts.  
 

Conclusion

Get a second opinion. Individuals are encouraged to educate themselves as much as possible on the condition. The hip and spine is a complex relationship. The most important information for patients is that they understand along with their doctor where the pain is coming from, the hip, spine, or both.

Reduce Plantar Fasciitis Foot Pain

 

 

Dr. Alex Jimenez’s Blog Post Disclaimer

The scope of our information is limited to chiropractic, musculoskeletal, physical medicines, wellness, and sensitive health issues and/or functional medicine articles, topics, and discussions. We use functional health & wellness protocols to treat and support care for injuries or disorders of the musculoskeletal system. Our posts, topics, subjects, and insights cover clinical matters, issues, and topics that relate and support directly or indirectly our clinical scope of practice.* Our office has made a reasonable attempt to provide supportive citations and has identified the relevant research study or studies supporting our posts. We also make copies of supporting research studies available to the board and or the public upon request. We understand that we cover matters that require an additional explanation as to how it may assist in a particular care plan or treatment protocol; therefore, to further discuss the subject matter above, please feel free to ask Dr. Alex Jimenez or contact us at 915-850-0900. The provider(s) Licensed in Texas& New Mexico*

Sacrum and Coccyx Vertebrae Possible Cause of Low Back Pain

11860 Vista Del Sol, Ste. 128 Sacrum and Coccyx Vertebrae Possible Cause of Low Back Pain
Doctor examining a patient's back in clinic
The sacrum and coccyx are part of the vertebral spinal column and could contribute to low back pain. They are not like the other bones in the spinal column. The sacrum, also known as the sacral vertebra, sacral spine, and S1 is a large, flat triangular-shaped bone that is between the hip bones and below the last lumbar vertebra known as L5. The coccyx, known as the tailbone, is positioned below the sacrum. The sacrum and coccyx are made up of smaller bones that fuse and grow into a solid bone mass by the age of 30. The sacrum is composed of 5 fused vertebrae known as S1-S5 and 3 to 5 smaller bones that fuse creating the coccyx. Both are weight-bearing bones and are integral to walking, standing, and sitting functions.  
 
StructureoftheSacrumDiagram ElPasoChiropractor
 

Sacrum and the Lumbosacral Spine

The sacrum forms the back of the pelvis. Along with the coccyx and the two sacroiliac joints make up the pelvic girdle. S1 is at the top of the sacrum and connects to the last lumbar vertebrae L5. Together they create the lumbosacral spine. Where they join forms the lumbosacral curves known as lumbar lordosis and lumbar kyphosis. The curvature works to support the upper body, weight/force distribution maintains spinal balance and flexibility. Lordosis is the inward curve of the spine, but too much can cause swayback that can be associated with spondylolisthesis. Loss of this curve can cause spinal imbalance and can lead to Flatback syndrome.  
11860 Vista Del Sol, Ste. 128 Sacrum and Coccyx Vertebrae Possible Cause of Low Back Pain
 
Kyphosis is the outward curve of the spine. The location of the sacrum at the intersection of the spine and pelvis means it has an important role in the movement of the low back and hips. The sacrum’s joints help to bear weight and help stabilize the spinal column along with the ligaments, tendons, and muscles help support/stabilize joint movement.

Lumbosacral joint

Joint L5 and S1 connect the lumbar spine to the sacrum. The pressure at this meeting point can be massive as the curve of the spine shifts from the lordotic forward curve to a kyphotic backward curve. The L5-S1 region bears weight, absorbs, and distributes the upper body’s weight when moving and resting. Disc herniation and spondylolisthesis are more common at L5-S1 for this reason.

Sacroiliac joints

The sacroiliac joints connect the sacrum to the left and right sides of the pelvis. The range of movement of the sacroiliac joints is minimal compared to other joints like the knees. However, the joints are essential for walking, standing, and stabilization of the hips. Sacroiliitis and sacroiliac joint dysfunction are two spinal disorders related to the joints. Other spinal disorders related to the sacral spine include:
  • Sciatica
  • Tarlov cysts
  • Spinal chordoma, a common type of spine bone cancer

The Coccyx’s Function

The coccyx commonly known as the tailbone is just below the sacrum. It is smaller than the sacrum and has an important weight-bearing function. It helps supports weight while sitting. An example is leaning back while sitting. This motion and position increase the pressure/weight on the coccyx. An injury in this area can cause tailbone pain. Inflammation of the coccyx’s connective tissue that results in tailbone pain that gets worse when sitting is a common symptom. A traumatic event like a fall or auto accident that causes a tailbone fracture can also cause this pain.

Sacral and Coccygeal Nerves

The spinal cord ends at L1-L2, which branches out into the cauda equina, which is a bundle of nerves that looks like a horse’s tail. In the sacrum, there are sacral nerves known as the sacral plexus. Plexus means a network of nerve structures. The sacral and lumbar plexus compose the lumbosacral plexus. This is where the sciatic nerve, which is the largest nerve in the sacral plexus converges into the band. Sciatic nerve compression causes a combination of symptoms known as sciatica. It is very well known for causing low back and leg pain. The coccygeal nerve serves the tailbone. There are five sacral nerves numbered S1 through S5 and are part of the spinal cord.
  • S1 supports groin and hip function
  • S2 the back of the thighs
  • S3 the middle of the buttock area
  • S4 and S5 the anus and vagina
11860 Vista Del Sol, Ste. 128 Sacrum and Coccyx Vertebrae Possible Cause of Low Back Pain
 
Injury or trauma to the sacral spine can cause mild stress fractures to severe bone fractures. These fractures can cause sacral nerve compression and intense pain. Symptoms include:
  • Low back pain
  • Leg pain
  • Bowel dysfunction
  • Bladder dysfunction
  • Unusual buttock/s or groin sensations
  • Osteoporosis or spinal inflammatory arthritis increases the risk for a sacral fracture.

Sacrum and Coccyx Injury Prevention

A doctor or chiropractor, physical therapist are excellent sources for information to help prevent sacrum and coccyx pain. These medical professionals will utilize a patient’s medical history, recommend lifestyle changes and injury prevention guidelines.
  • If at risk of developing osteoporosis then a bone mineral density test could be recommended.
  • Activities that stress the lower spine should be avoided. Extreme flexing could cause or contribute to low back/leg pain, numbness, and weakness.
  • Moderate exercising like walking, jogging, yoga, and strength training all help keep the spine strong, flexible, and healthy.
  • The core or abdominal muscles should be strengthened. Proper core muscle strength will stabilize the sacrum.
  • Proper posture must be maintained. Avoid slouching as this places added pressure on the lumbosacral spine and the sacroiliac joints.
  • Proper body mechanics when engaging in any activity needs to be observed.
  • Use leg strength to lift objects.
  • Avoid twisting while lifting or holding heavy objects, as this can cause sprain, strain, or serious injury of the lower spine.
  • Put on the seat belt. Auto accidents are a major cause of spine trauma. Exercise restraint when driving or riding in any vehicle even a golf cart.

Sciatica Pain Relief


 

Dr. Alex Jimenez’s Blog Post Disclaimer

The scope of our information is limited to chiropractic, musculoskeletal, physical medicines, wellness, and sensitive health issues and/or functional medicine articles, topics, and discussions. We use functional health & wellness protocols to treat and support care for injuries or disorders of the musculoskeletal system. Our posts, topics, subjects, and insights cover clinical matters, issues, and topics that relate and support directly or indirectly our clinical scope of practice.* Our office has made a reasonable attempt to provide supportive citations and has identified the relevant research study or studies supporting our posts. We also make copies of supporting research studies available to the board and or the public upon request. We understand that we cover matters that require an additional explanation as to how it may assist in a particular care plan or treatment protocol; therefore, to further discuss the subject matter above, please feel free to ask Dr. Alex Jimenez or contact us at 915-850-0900. The provider(s) Licensed in Texas& New Mexico*
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