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myofacial therapy

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Old 05-28-2006, 01:37 PM   #1
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myofacial therapy

Fell over 3 years ago, I have been having myofacial therapy for 1 years. We are at a stand still of finding big improvements. The therapist and I kind of agreed that for the last six months we are just maintaining, yet we both think if I quit, I would be back in hell again. As it is now, I still get extremely strong muscle spams, so strong it will either double me up or lock me in the shape of a bow without the arrow. I am on a bunch of drugs, but the Duragesic patch is the one that does the most. I have had it fall off at night or like it did today, just plain ran out of juice long before it should have. My wife tells me I always have a high threshold for pain, but these last 3 years have been hell. I won't even start on my work comp problems. Is myofacial therapy helping others?

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Old 05-28-2006, 02:07 PM   #2
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Re: myofacial therapy

Excuse my ignorance....but what exactly is myofacial therapy? I've never heard the term. You say you took a fall 3 years ago, what part of your body did you hurt? Fill me in please - hope you feel better too! KathyMac

Old 05-28-2006, 08:05 PM   #3
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Re: myofacial therapy

3 yrs ago I was on a ladder at work 12 feet high working-ladder moved-I fell 12' landing on my tailbone in the sitting position on a cement floor. As time has passedmore symptoms come out. Work Comp denies everything that was not a problem from day one. I have a constant pain that feels like someone shoved a 1" ice cold steel rod up my butt, stopping about mid back with the explosion of pain. I take too many drugs to name, but the Duragesic patch is an absolute must. Again work comp problems are unbelieveable, denying everything since I hired a lawyer after 1 yr. I would find myself screeming at the lady denying and delaying, dragging things on. First regular therapy-then a 1 month learn to live with pain program-then at the UofMN, the specialist there told me to try and find a myofacial therapist close by. 1 year ago xmas eve day-muscle spasms started thataremind blowingly hard. Think of the worst seizure you have seen-it last 20 minutes to 2 hours....just banging, locking my body up so I can't even move-screaming so loud I lose my voice. ( I feel the worst for my wife, she's the one that watches and is helpless). These spasms happen probably 10 times aday at least.

then I started myofacial therapy-5 times a week for 2 months-3 times a week ever since. you lie flat on your stomach-the therapist pushes his elbow as deep as he can, when you get your breath back and pain goes away(he still is applying pressure) - you tell him the pain quit(and it does) -he then lays on his elbow. The pain takes your breath away, but some how this helps. He moves 1/4" and starts all over-this continues up and down both sides of my spine- thru the year they move all around the back getting deeper and deeper getting muscles to relax. Then he moves to the front working on the diaphram and under the ribs. Who ever thought up this way of delivering pain to get muscles to relax-had to be out of his or her mind. But it works.....I have been going a year the first of June. They have got me to a point, but the spasms continue, not as violent normally, but its a roller coast ride with the spasms being mind blowing to just banging away at you. Sorry for the long explanation, but it has made it so I can live somewhat normal--but my normal and the average person don't compare. All this time the mind blowing pain in my spine has not changed at all. If it were not for drugs and the narcotic patch---I know I would not be here.

Old 05-29-2006, 09:48 AM   #4
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Re: myofacial therapy

Hey CB and Kathy, What he's describing is triggerpoint therapy. Applying pressure to a trigger point drives the blood of out a muscle spasm or TP and causes it to release. It's something that can be helpful just like trigger point injections or using Botox on muscles that are constantly in spasm may provide longer lasting relief.

What your likely going to run into with PT when your no longer improving is the insurer will say you have reached max medical benefit from any further treatment. If you were using your own insurance or comercial insurance, you would have used up all your PT benefits long before 6 months of 3 days a week. I would love to get a massage 3 days a week for the rest of my life and have unlimited chiro benefits to adjust the problems having my entie lumbar spine fused created in the thoracic area and SI joints , but Once you max med benefit you need to find a better longer lasting way to achieve the same relief.

We also have to do our part and take advantage of the relief we get from any modality, whetther it's a nerve blocks, chiro, Botox or anything that eases pain and allows us to take over and start strengthening, stretching and rebuild what we loose while injured and living a sedentayry life to limit the amount of pain we experience.

I would expect your PT and insurance to discontinue a therapy that isn't providing measurable gains, otherwise everytone would use their insurance to get a massage 3 days a week simply because it feels good.

The latest in trigger point therapies is actual surgical release, it's new and experimental but the docs doing it are reporting great success in whiplash patients and patients with cervicle turtocolis.

TP pressure is something you spouse can learn to apply and do daily, they make specific tools to ease the stress on her thumbs wih large plastic jacks that have different szize balls on theend of each arm of the Jack, they also make hand help devices to give your partners hand a beak but they need tolearn to identify them and the patient needs to stretch and excercise in between feel good treatments. After 6 monhs of no improvement, you simply can't expect feel good therapy to continue indefintiely so it's a must to take advanatage of any relief your geting and do your part to improve your condition.

You're also more lkely to continue to show measurable improvement if your doing your part excercising, stretching, using heat, or ice or going to the gym to work out and use a pool or jacuzzi or simply walk daily. Treatment will continue longer since comp doesn't have a specific limit on the number of visits it takes to return someone to work, but without measurable improvement it will come to an end at some point.

There are stronger methods like TP injections and botox that last longer and may be time better spent if those allow you to work on your strength and felxability in between apts.

There are also alternatves like intrathecal baclofen because you simply can't take enough oral baclofen to stop the spacticity that many MS patients have. Where intrathecal delivery allows enough to be delivered to truly make a difference on severe spasticity or spasm.

Trigger point therapy or acupressure isn't anything new, many Chiros use it along with spinal manipulations, Physiatrists and Osteopaths have been using the same technique since before my first surgery in 93. Unfortunately it's not a cure, it's just a feel good modality like massage, heat or E-stim and the rest is up to the patient to participate in a comprehensive physical rehab program.

This is particularly important because it doesn't apear your beng hindered by a spnal injnury and the problem is purely muscular. Acupuncture may be worh tryng, TENS, TINS, and most important, rebuilding the muscle strength and flexability you have lost because pain limits willingness to participate in anything that causes more pain.

If your simply resting between treatments your loose more and more strength, flexability and range of motion as you become more and more tolerant to the meds used to facilitate participation in a rehab program.
Good luck, Dave

Last edited by Shoreline; 05-29-2006 at 09:56 AM.

Old 05-29-2006, 10:26 AM   #5
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Re: myofacial therapy

I've had the trigger pt injections-no good. I've had the nerve bloc-no results- I've had 6 epidural injections-no results. The only thing to give me any relief has been myofacial therapy. I have not had this massage 3 times a week you talk of. I have 12 minutes of Ultra sound where the therapist is going to work-I have either cervical traction or (can't think of the term) traction pulling from the hip for 10 minutes. I then have therapy so painful you want to scream for 20 minutes. Maybe massage is part of most therapy of sorts, but not what they do to me 3 times a week.

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