• Dealing with Cubital Tunnel Syndrome

    November 30, 2017, by admin

    Ever wondered why you feel a lot of tingling, numbness, or loss of sensation in your hand? Do you feel that your grip has weakened? You could be suffering from cubital tunnel syndrome, a hand injury that involves increased pressure of the ulnar nerve. This nerve is the one responsible for giving sensation to your ring and little finger, and helps you create a strong hand grip.

    This medical condition is the lesser known relative of the carpal tunnel syndrome, but can be just as devastating. It can develop from repetitive motions such as leaning on one’s elbow or sleeping with a hand under a pillow for an extended period of time. Any physical activity that involves pressure on the ulnar nerve can develop into a cubital tunnel syndrome.

    Other factors that could lead to cubital tunnel syndrome are prior fracture and bone spurs to the elbow, as well as any activities that require the elbow to be flexed or bent for a very long time.

    Treating Cubital Tunnel Syndrome

    The symptoms will come and go initially, but could become persistent over time if it remains untreated. For the most part, the cubital tunnel syndrome can be managed using conservative treatments. Once a diagnosis has been made, a San Diego orthopedic doctor will prescribe non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs to reduce the swelling. You can also prevent things from worsening by wearing protective elbow pad or a splint while sleeping to keep the elbow in a straight position. Nerve-gliding exercises can also be done to stretch and encourage movement within the cubital tunnel.

    If any of these nonsurgical treatments do not work out, your doctor may consider outpatient surgeries such as a cubital tunnel release that aims to decrease the pressure on the ulnar nerve.

  • Dealing with Osteochondritis Dissecans

    November 21, 2017, by admin

    Osteochondritis dissecans is a medical condition in which the bone and cartilage loses the blood supply that enables them to function properly. This usually happens to boys between 9 to 18 years of age that are active in sports. This joint disease usually affects a boy’s knees, but it can affect the elbows and ankles as well.


    Symptoms of osteochondritis dissecans include pain, soreness, stiffness, locking of the joint, and limited range of joint movement. The pain usually flares up after an intense physical activity. Those that are at a higher risk for osteochondritis dissecans are football, basketball, and soccer players.

    For most children, the pain fades away and the bone will heal on its own by having plenty of rest and protecting the knee with splint, cast, or braces. Physical therapy can also be implemented to strengthen the bone joint. Your child can return to normal activities as symptoms improve over time.


    However, if your child’s joint pain remains persistent and does not go away, you should seek professional medical attention. The symptoms of osteochondritis dissecans are quite similar to other bone and joint diseases so it is important to establish an accurate diagnosis as well as implement the right treatment plan.

    Initial treatment for OCD usually begins with the RICE (rest, ice, compression, and elevation) method. A cast or a brace may be used to strengthen the joint and weight-bearing exercises may be implemented. However, if these do not work, surgical intervention may be needed to improve the outcome.

    A patient suffering from severe osteochondritis dissecans can be treated with arthroscopy to remove the problematic cartilage from the joint. Another option is drilling the bone lesion to create new pathways for the blood vessels to flow. A graft can also be done to replace the damaged joint with a new bone and cartilage.

  • How to Treat a Gymnast Wrist

    November 14, 2017, by admin

    Gymnastics is a great sport that will improve your child’s physical development especially in the areas of strength, flexibility, and agility. Unfortunately, the sport can also challenge and stress your child’s body. Most gymnasts are required to put a lot of weight on their wrist joints, which means there is great potential for injury. If you have a child gymnast, you should watch out for a hand injury called the gymnast wrist.

    Also called a distal radial epiphysitis, the gymnast wrist is a type of chronic pain that occurs on the growth plate connected at the radius bone near the wrist. Because the growth plate is softer, it is more susceptible to injury than mature bone. The injury usually appears whenever a young gymnast goes through an increased intensity of gymnastic activities, such as when he or she progresses through a higher level of competition.

    Symptoms and Treatments for Your Child’s Gymnast Wrist

    The most common symptom of a gymnast wrist is pain, usually located on the thumb side. Mild swelling and decreased range of motion can also be felt. Once a diagnosis is made, treatment for a gymnast wrist begins with rest from doing high-impact activities. Ice and anti-inflammatory medicine will then be prescribed by your San Diego orthopedic doctor. If the pain does not subside, corticosteroid injections can also be done. Surgical alternatives will be looked into if these do not correct the wrist impairment.

    Once the inflammation has subsided and your young athlete has been cleared by your doctor, he or she can resume activities slowly and gradually to maintain mobility and upper extremity strength. A wrist brace may be worn to reduce the stress on the hand during tumbling and vaulting motions. Incorporating exercises that strengthen the upper body will also help.

  • Osteoarthritis of the Knee

    November 7, 2017, by admin

    Is your child having difficulty getting in and out of cars, and experiencing knee pain in the morning? He or she may have knee osteoarthritis. Most people associate osteoarthritis with old age, but it can affect young people, too. Knee osteoarthritis can happen due to injury, infection, and hereditary reasons. Other factors such as excess weight and repetitive stress injuries come into play as well.

    Osteoarthritis is a medical condition in which the natural cushioning of the knee joints becomes weak, resulting to the knee’s bones rubbing closely together during movement. This leads to pain, swelling, stiffness, and development of bone spurs.

    Treatment Plan

    In order to set your child on the way to recovery, it is always best to get an early diagnosis from a San Diego orthopedic doctor. Once your child has been diagnosed with osteoarthritis, a treatment plan will be implemented that includes pain relievers, anti-inflammatory drugs, and physical therapy. Corticosteroid and hyaluronic acid may also be injected to relieve the pain.

    Surgical Options

    The doctor may also advise your kid to lose weight to reduce the strain on the knee and to incorporate low-impact exercise to strengthen muscles while avoiding the possibility of aggravating the injury. If these conservative treatments do not work, there are surgical options that may be considered to prevent the osteoarthritis from progressing.

    Osteotomy is a procedure in which the knee bones are modified to control the damage. Arthroscopy is a minimally invasive procedure where the orthopedic surgeon will make an incision and insert a small camera that will repair the damaged parts. Arthroplasty is a last resort and will only be considered on severe cases of osteoarthritis. It involves a total bone replacement in which the bad joint is replaced by a plastic and metal device.

  • Treatment for a Torn Meniscus

    October 30, 2017, by admin

    When left to their own devices, most children run around with abandon, increasing their chances of getting a torn meniscus whenever they make sudden stops and turns or accidentally twist or rotate their knee. The risk for this type of knee injury is especially high for young athletes who participate in sports that involve plenty of pivoting motions like tennis and basketball.

    A torn meniscus leads to a persistent knee pain and can even lead to osteoarthristis in the later stages. At the time of injury, a loud popping sound will be heard, followed by swelling and pain afterwards. A “locking” sensation where the knee cannot fully extend or straighten can also be felt at times. There is also the possibility that the knee will give way at times and will not be able to support your child’s weight.

    Conservative Treatments

    The meniscus is a cartilage that serves as a cushion between the thighbone (femur) and shinbone (tibia). If the meniscus is injured, conservative treatments such as rest, ice, anti-inflammatory medications, and physical rehabilitation can be done to give the knee plenty of time to heal on its own.

    Pain and swelling will go away in a matter of days; however, full recovery requires a long-term commitment to ensure that the muscles surrounding the knee grows strong. To return the knee to its normal function, your child will need to maintain his or her ideal body weight and avoid activities that can aggravate the tear.

    Surgical Intervention

    If these initial treatments do not heal the tear, an arthroscopy will be done by a San Diego orthopedic doctor to repair or remove the damaged cartilage. This is a minimally invasive outpatient procedure done to repair the meniscus tear, and has a faster rehabilitation and better outcome than a traditional open surgery.

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