VIDEO TESTIMONIAL FOR A PIRIFORMIS SYNDROME PATIENT FROM OKLAHOMA
Many of you reading this post have no idea what PIRIFORMIS SYNDROME is. That's great as long as you are not one of those sufferers who struggles with the problem, but, like most of my local patients, has never heard the word before (HERE is even more information on PS). However, if you have ever dealt with chronic SCIATICA (leg pain) and severe buttock pain, you have a pretty good idea why someone would search so intently for a solution to their misery.
Crystal was today's early morning appointment, making the scenic 6 hour trip from Clayton, Oklahoma yesterday. Her first visit for Piriformis Syndrome (7 months ago) went so well, that she decided to come back for seconds. The video will only take you a couple of minutes to watch. Rather than let me tell you about Crystal's incredible experience, listen to what she has to say about it herself. Thanks Crystal! Maybe I'll stop by and visit next time I ride the TALIMENA SKYWAY.
WHEN IT COMES TO US HELPING
No pain; no gain. Jane Fonda from her 1982 workout videos
Let me start by saying that I have never officially been part of a CrossFit program or gym. However, because I have a gym in the basement of my clinic, I am able to incorporate many of their training methods into my workouts. A few of the things my son and I do that could be considered "CrossFit-like" are KETTLEBELL SWINGS, all sorts of Burpees, several novel kinds of pushups and pullups, and pounding a tire with a sledge hammer as well as two five pound hammers (one for each hand). I am also getting ready to put up some rings.
I am sold on CrossFit's typically short duration, high intensity style of training, as well as the wide variety of atypical exercises. But, with any sort of physical training (running, powerlifting, swimming, gymnastics, MMA, etc, etc, etc), people can push things beyond what their body can withstand and repair ---- sometimes far beyond. It has taken me a lot of years to figure out that when it comes to getting in shape, sometimes less is more. I can remember Joe Wieder writing about over-training back in early 1980's issues of Muscle & Fitness. Although I did not "get it" then, I now understand just how easy is is to "over-train" and end up wearing your body down instead of building it up. Speaking of over-training; a few days ago someone sent me a link to a recent article called, CrossFit's Dirty Little Secret. The article, written by a Physical Therapist, was about the, "troubling trend among CrossFitters". And just what is this troubling trend? Have any of you heard of something called Rhabdomyolysis?
I'll get to exactly what Rhabdomyolysis is momentarily, but the thing to remember is that none of this is new information. For years, newspapers and magazines have been carrying headlines touting the dangers of CrossFit such as, "Getting Fit, Even if it Kills you" (2005, New York Times), Inside the Cult of CrossFit (2011 Men's Health), and "Lawsuit Alleges CrossFit Workout Damaging" (2008, Navy Times). There have even been a couple articles on the topic of Rhabdo by CrossFit's founder himself, Greg Glassman. I am not going to get into depth here (read the articles if you want), but if you are a novice who is trying to do advanced workouts; or if you are pushing your body to the realm of stupidity, you are headed for a breakdown --- probably sooner than later. It is only common sense to workout within your body's limits. I'm not in terrible shape now, and I used to be in really good shape. However, I would not even think of doing some of the workouts that I have seen others do. Again, know your limitations, and exercise your brain before exercising your body.
We live in a culture of excess. Americans take something like two thirds of the world's medications even though we are less than 5% of the world's population. We act like every meal is going to be our last (just look at OBESITY RATES here in America --- nearly 40% of the adult population). And when we do exercise, some of us really exercise. The hottest video workouts today are things like P-90X, Insanity, and other super high intensity routines, with every new video being touted as more intense than the one before it. Unfortunately, most of these could in no ways be considered to be "low duration". Low Duration Exercise. It is one of the things that drew me to the concept of CrossFit in the first place (many of their workouts last no more than 15 minutes).
The last several years have seen my workouts get progressively shorter. Why? Virtually all the peer-reviewed literature says that this is the best way to train (here are several articles on CARDIO TRAINING -vs- STRENGTH TRAINING). One of the first books I read on the subject (Bill Phillip's Body for Life), was talking about high intensity / low duration exercise a decade and a half ago. I even remember reading Arthur Jones talking about the famous "Colorado Experiment" with the recently deceased CASEY VIATOR back when I was in college, but blew it off assuming that his gains were all steroid-related. I guess the problem is that just like the disagreement we have over what "no pain, no gain," really means, we cannot seem to agree what either 'high intensity' or 'low duration' really mean either. But let's get back to the real reason you are reading this post ---- Rhabdo.
WHAT IS RHABDOMYOLYSIS
AND WHAT CAUSES IT?
Rhabdomyolysis can occur when overworked, abused, traumatized, or poisoned skeletal muscle rapidly undergoes lysis. The muscles cells rupture their contents as the tissue is broken down into its components. This releases muscle cells and their constituent parts into the bloodstream. Certain byproducts of this process such as the oxygen-carrying protein myoglobin, can damage the kidneys to the extent that dialysis is required for survival. But short of complete kidney failure, Rhabdo can cause permanent muscle damage as well a host of other nasty problems. So; how would you have any idea you might be dealing with Rhabdomyolysis? Just watch for the signs.
SIGNS YOU MIGHT HAVE RHABDO
- Dark Urine
- Decreased Urine Production
- Overall Weakness as well as Weakness in Specific Muscles
- Fatigue / Exhaustion
- Muscle Stiffness, Aching, Tenderness, or Pain
- Joint Pain / Joint Stiffness
- Generalized Weight Gain or Localized Bloating / Swelling
- GET TO AN EMERGENCY ROOM IF YOU SUSPECT YOU ARE DEALING WITH RHABDOMYOLYSIS: In case you have not figured it out, this stuff is serious. The diagnosis is made via a simple blood test (CPK). Don't gamble with this problem as it can be both permanent and deadly!
- DRINK LOTS OF WATER: One of the risk factors for Rhabdo is dehydration. Notice that I said to drink more "water". Sorry, SODA, juice, and Gatorade don't count.
- START SLOW AND KNOW YOUR LIMITS: Although many who develop workout-induced Rhabdo are untrained or under-trained, many are extremely fit individuals who simply pushed the envelope too far. As you get in better shape, push the envelope slowly --- a little bit at a time. A "Murph" (Named after Navy Lt. Michael Murphy, who was killed while serving in Afghanistan; the Murph consists of a one mile run, followed by 100 pull ups, 200 pushups, and 300 air squats, and then another mile run ---- all for time), is probably not the best place to start.
- REALIZE THERE IS NO DISHONOR IN BACKING OFF: If you think a certain workout might be over your head, modify it.
- LEARN MORE ABOUT STATIN DRUGS: I realize that this bullet point seems out of place, but you have to understand that the most common side-effect of Statin Drugs is "muscle pain / soreness". I recently asked two medical doctors what drugs they would never take. Top of the list for both? The ANTI-CHOLESTEROL drugs. To begin to understand why they would say this, pay attention to the words of world-renowned cholesterol expert, professor Flemming Dela from the Center for Healthy Aging at the University of Copenhagen, Denmark (the study was reported in the January 2013 issue of the Journal of the American College of Cardiology). "A well-known side effect of statin therapy is muscle pain. Up to 75 per cent of the physically active patients undergoing treatment for high cholesterol experience pain. This may keep people away from either taking their medicine or from taking exercise....... The effect of statins is marginal for these patients. In a previously published Cochrane analysis only 0.5% reduction in all-cause mortality was detected, indicating that for every 200 patients taking statins daily for five years, one death would be prevented." This research was done because 40% of the Dutch over the age of 65 are on Statin Drugs, with a whopping 75% of these complaining of muscle pain.
Should you stop taking Statin Drugs? Only you and your doctor can answer that question. However, once you learn that CONTROLLING YOUR BLOOD SUGAR is the best way to deal with all sorts of blood lipid issues, dropping the dangerous drug might just be an option for you (HERE is more information on the blood sugar / cholesterol link with Dr. Oz, and HERE are some diet tips). Should you do nothing but wimpy workouts? No way Jose! Even the intense CrossFit workouts can fantastic when done correctly. Never let your trainer or instructor push you into something you are not comfortable with. Use some good old fashioned common sense when you are pushing things to the max.
VIDEO TESTIMONIALS OF NECK PAIN
BEFORE TREATMENT / AFTER TREATMENT
I met Lonna for the first time yesterday, just before lunch (she was my last patient of the morning). She is a lot like hundreds upon hundreds of other patients I have seen throughout the years for CHRONIC NECK PAIN caused by old MVA'S. In her case, the accident occurred over two and a half decades ago. Even people who do not grasp the significance of specific sorts of injuries caused by car crashes (FASCIAL ADHESIONS for one) have no problem understanding Lonna's case. The crash caused three different fractures of her neck and left her incredibly restricted in her ability to move her head. In fact, Lonna is one of the only people I have met who not only survived a hangman's fracture, but was not paralyzed. Her car slammed into a metal highway divider and flipped five times.
After performing an orthopedic / neurological exam on Lonna, I had Tracy shoot a couple minutes of video while we went through her ranges of motion again. Lonna's cervical spine (neck) range of motion was terrible --- about half of what would be considered 'normal' (see video on left). The second video (the one on the right) was shot minutes after a 15 minute session of TISSUE REMODELING. Bear in mind that although I did adjust her, I purposefully did not do so until after Tracy shot the second video. The thing I want you to notice here is the incredible increase in range of motion in Lonna's neck that occurs almost instantly.
Oh; one more thing I want you to pay attention to while watching the first video. Take note of her response to my question concerning how long an adjustment would last her (her answer: "a day"). In other words, no matter how many times she gets adjusted, it's never enough (HERE). Even though it is one of the only things that helps her feel better, the results are ridiculously temporary. Although I have mentioned this phenomenon numerous times in my blog posts, I actually devoted an entire post to this topic while doing my series on Chronic Neck Pain (HERE). Hopefully these videos are of a good enough quality that you can see the difference before and after.
SLEEP APNEA AND OBESITY
MORE COMMON-SENSE MEDICINE
The first line of defense against obstructive sleep apnea should be weight loss, according to new guidelines from the American College of Physicians. Drug therapy has been tried, using a range of medications, but evidence was insufficient to conclude that any of them worked. Cherry picked from a recent issue of MedPage Today, as reported in the October 1 issue of Annals of Internal Medicine
Nearly five years ago, the most prestigious medical institution on the planet (Johns Hopkins in Baltimore, Maryland) published several studies on the cause(s) of Sleep Apnea, and listed three things that are heavily associated with this common problem.
- LIVER DISEASE: The number one form of Liver Disease is "Fatty Liver". The number one cause of Fatty Liver is not alcoholism, but obesity.
- OBESITY ITSELF: It only stands to reason.
- SEDENTARY LIFESTYLE: After reading the article called, "Sitting is the New Smoking," I completely understand.
Here is the deal folks. Lack of quality sleep is one of the great destroyers of health (HERE). Combine that with THESE amazing statistics on Sleep Disorders in America, and you'll begin to understand the magnitude of this problem. Sure; CPAP machines can be a great help to those who struggle with Sleep Apnea. But if you are truly interested in getting to the bottom of the situation and LOSING THE EXCESS WEIGHT, I have a whole section on the topic.
The verdict is in. You have to take charge of your health. You doctor cannot do it for you. One of our government's dirty little secrets is that Obama-Care is not the savior it was portrayed to be. Since most diseases are diseases of lifestyle, drugs and surgery are not the answer. Never were. Sooner or later you will figure this out if you desire to live a long and productive life.
CHRONIC NECK AND POST-SURGICAL
LOW BACK / PIRIFORMIS PAIN
"Doctors did not believe anything was wrong with me." Jennie Lietke, Payson, AZ
POST-SURGICAL ROTATOR CUFF PROBLEMS
Move forward 10 years. After fixing Stephanie's mom's arm about a decade ago, Stephanie came in to see if I could help her with her surgically repaired shoulder. I treated her once then, and once 2-3 years ago --- several years apart. She has no problems with the shoulder today. This is not the only post-surgical shoulder problem I have dealt with. If you feel the urge, you can watch videos from a dance instructor who had an old Rotator Cuff surgery, as well as a pastor who had a 40 year old post-surgical Rotator Cuff that we were able to fix in two visits (HERE and HERE). For more VIDEO TESTIMONIALS related to Tissue Remodeling, follow the link.
IT'S A GREAT TIME TO VISIT MOUNTAIN VIEW
"There's nothing quite like Indian Summer in the Ozarks." Dr. Russell Schierling, Mountain View, MO
Sincerely, Dr. Russ
CHRONIC NECK PAIN AND MOTORCYCLE HELMETS
"Did you know that the average human head weighs 8 pounds?" Ray from 1996's Jerry McGuire
If you look at our MVA PAGE, you'll notice that according to the peer-reviewed scientific literature, women are more likely to be injured in a whiplash-type accident --- much more likely. Women are also substantially more likely to suffer with Chronic Neck Pain long after their injury. Most of this has to do with the fact that women typically have much smaller necks than men, with much less muscle mass to support the head. With the average head weighing 8-12 pounds, and the average helmet coming in at around four pounds, this amount of weight can overcome even a healthy neck with a day of hard riding. Think about it for a moment; the heaviest bowling ball is 16 lbs. The head and helmet must be held by seven small vertebrae, some CONNECTIVE TISSUE, and several small muscles. In someone with a previously injured neck, riding can become impossible. So, what's a person to do if they want to ride?
- GET THE PROPER WINDSHIELD: A good windshield will not only keep much of the wind off the driver, but off the passenger as well. I ride a 2001 GL1800 (HERE). Between the proper windshield and the right kind(s) of wind wings, I can keep most of the wind off myself and my passenger if that is desired. BTW, I run a MADSTAD.
- WEAR A CARBON-FIBER HELMET: One of the newer helmet technologies is Carbon Fiber. Although these can cost substantially more than a standard plastic / fiberglass helmet, you can shave a pound or so with the Carbon Fiber.
- MAINTAIN GOOD POSTURE: As you might guess, POSTURE can be a deal-breaker as far as Chronic Neck Pain and motorcycles are concerned.
- STRENGTHEN AND STRETCH YOUR NECK: While this might work well for the general population, there is a significant chance that it is not going to work well for those of you coping with day-to-day neck pain. To understand why, go HERE.
- DEAL WITH THE UNDERLYING SCAR TISSUE: If you have previously injured your neck, there is a good possibility that all of the previous bullet points above will prove fruitless if you do not first deal with the underlying SCAR TISSUE. Most of the time this Scar Tissue occurs in the Fascia. The problems with injuries to the Fascia is that even though it is arguably the single most pain-sensitive tissue in the human body, it is too thin to be properly seen with advanced imaging techniques such as MRI. This can lead to the PERFECT STORM of Chronic Pain.
If you have questions about getting help for your Chronic Neck Pain, simply EMAIL ME a detailed history of your problem. Or call Cheryl at (417) 934-6337 to make an appointment. To see what makes us so radically different from the average clinic, read THIS POST, then take a few minutes and watch a couple of our VIDEO TESTIMONIALS (or HERE).
NECK EXERCISES, NECK STRETCHES,
AND CHRONIC NECK PAIN
Although you are told to suck it up, get tough, and stretch through the pain; it never seems to work. It is simple to understand why. I would liken the kind of stretching you have been doing, to trying to undo a loosely knotted rope by pulling on both ends: No matter how hard you pull, you only make the knot tighter! From Dr. Schierling's STRETCHING PAGE.
Although many of you will respond beautifully to Neck Stretching / Strengthening Protocols (whether these are "self-help" or prescribed by a physician / therapist), there are a significant number of you will actually get worse. Why? What gives? After all, A COUPLE OF DAYS AGO I spoke about the importance of restoring / maintaining proper motion in the neck if you want any hope of conquering neck pain. I wrote that, "There is an intimate relationship between loss of normal ranges of motion in your neck, and pain in the neck. If you have poor mobility of the neck, sooner or later it is probably going to give you grief in the form of neck pain. If left unchecked, this neck pain can easily become Chronic Neck Pain". If this is true, how could a stretching and exercise protocol for your neck possibly be a bad thing? After all, the very purpose of stretching the neck is to create more mobility in it. It comes down to understanding the way that the neck functions.
When you 'extend' your neck, there should be fairly uniform joint motion at each and every vertebrae / disc of the lower cervical spine (there will not be much at the top two as it is more involved with rotational movements such as being able to put your nose over your shoulder). If I simply measure a person's overall (sectional) extension without checking the motion of each individual joint via motion palpation (for severely injured patients, some doctors use Video Flouroscopy for this), I can easily be fooled. Allow me to show you an example of what I am talking about.
So; are stretching and strengthening exercises for the neck a good thing? Absolutely! But only after you have cleared the FASCIAL ADHESIONS and SUBLUXATIONS --- in that order. Once you have begun to deal with the individual abnormalities in cervical spine motion (SEGMENTAL MOTION), and gotten rid of the SCAR TISSUE and Fibrosis that is so often the culprit in the hindrance of overall motion (sectional motion), exercises and stretches are a wonderful part of rehabbing and restoring motion, function, PROPER CURVE, etc, to the neck. But put the cart ahead of the horse and and those good intentions could backfire.
Dr. Schierling completed four years of Kansas State University's five-year Nutrition / Exercise Physiology Program before deciding on a career in Chiropractic. He graduated from Logan Chiropractic College in 1991, and has run a busy clinic in Mountain View, Missouri ever since. He and his wife Amy have four children (three daughters and a son).
Brain Based Therapy
Can You Help
Cardio Or Strength
Cold Laser Therapy
Death By Medicine
Degenerative Joint Disease
D's Of Chronic Pain
Evidence Based Medicine
Gluten Cross Reactivity
Ice Or Heat
Jacks Fork River
Leaky Gut Syndrome
Number One Health Problem
Platelet Rich Therapy
Post Surgical Scarring
Re Invent Yourself
Rib And Chest Pain
Scar Tissue Removal
Sleeping Pills Kill
Stay Or Go
Stretching Post Treatment
Tensegrity And Fascia
The Big Four
Thoracic Outlet Syndrome
Whole Body Vibration