Thursday, August 30, 2012

Back Pain, Sciatic Pain, Hand Pain: Paradigm Shift gives Relief

While medicine compartmentalizes the body, one must remember that the body is one unit consisting of different systems that work together. Certainly there is importance to extended knowledge in specific areas, although one mustn’t miss the forest by treating just one tree.

Pain is caused when cells are damaged or malfunction. Damaged cells don’t function properly, therefore that can’t produce ATP (adenosine triphosphate) at optimal levels. They are unable to repair or heal themselves. One might think of a cell as a factory, with ATP the energy source for the majority of cellular functions. It is required for movement and is involved in maintaining cell structure, cell metabolism and cellular respiration. ATP also has a signaling capacity that is important in both the central and peripheral nervous system.
When there is a source of pain, the cells have become inflamed or irritated. Cells then form trigger points or trigger bands. Since our skeletal system is connected by dense connective tissue (ligaments and tendons, fascia), one needs to connect the messages through the nervous system while activating ATP. Ones functional movement is directed by a healthy nervous system –> reduction of pain.

Certainly there are 3 types of pain: acute, chronic, and intractable. It doesn’t matter what kind of pain one has, pain is all encompassing. The traditional methods of treating the symptoms of pain are OTC pain medications, Rx narcotics and muscle relaxants, nerve blocks, injections, nerve ablations, TENS units, implantable devices and surgery. None of these sound particularly pleasant to me, however, these are the traditional choices for many.
To offer a paradigm shift, let’s identify the pain and treat the source of the pain. According to a study at the University of Massachusetts 2009, Biphasic Dose Response in Low Level Light Therapy (LLLT), there is a 93% decrease in pain when LLLT is combined with micro electrical therapy. In the last few years, the FDA has cleared this as an over the counter device. No doctor visits or prescriptions, one can address their pain in an easy to use method. 

Recently, my friend Kevin, had severe mid-back pain from over using his muscles. Six minutes with this handy device and he looked at me and asked, “Could I have less pain already?” It’s that possible, and probably. When the pain has been long standing, it often takes repeated applications, in fact, this can be done for 30 minutes four times a day.  And that’s a lot of relief.

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