Monthly Archives: March 2012

Yankees P Chamberlain dislocates ankle, 2012 season over

Joba Chamberlain’s career has veered from exhilarating to frustrating to a testament to sweat and hard work. Now, in its latest and perhaps last chapter, Chamberlain’s saga has become heart-wrenching as the Yankee reliever lies in a Tampa hospital bed with a possible career-ending ankle injury.

Chamberlain suffered a gruesome open dislocation of his right ankle while playing with his son Thursday and, according to a Yankee source, lost a potentially life-threatening amount of blood. He has already had surgery and will remain in the hospital for several more days, his inspiring comeback from Tommy John surgery put on hold, at the very least.

Read more at the New York Daily News.

To find out how to treat complicated ankle injuries, visit our Foot and Ankle Center.


Screening Patients For Osteoporosis

A recently published study from the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine demonstrates that screening strategies vary widely in identifying women residing in nursing homes who are eligible for treatment of osteoporosis. However, the researchers concluded that a reasonable clinical approach would be to consider osteoporosis treatment for those with clinical fractures of the hip or spine, radiologic evidence for a vertebral fracture or osteoporosis by bone mineral density classification.

Led by Susan Greenspan, M.D., professor of medicine at Pitt, the study, published in this month’s Journal of the American Geriatrics Society, sought to identify nursing home patients who would benefit from pharmacologic treatment of osteoporosis, which could decrease their risk for bone fractures. Osteoporosis is a disease that causes bones to become weak and break easily.

“Osteoporosis in the frail elderly can have devastating consequences, but we have yet to perfect a system for identifying those patients who would benefit most from the treatment,” Dr. Greenspan said in a news release issued about the study.

The researchers evaluated a variety of osteoporosis screening strategies in more than 200 women residing in 11 long-term care facilities in the Pittsburgh area. Screening measures included history of bone fracture, bone mineral density by standard Dexa scanning, the fracture risk assessment tool (FRAX) with body mass index (BMI), FRAX with femoral neck bone density, and heel ultrasound.

The study found that depending on the screening strategy used, identification of treatment eligibility varied from 17 percent for clinical fracture to 98 percent for FRAX with BMI. Also, three-quarters of vertebral fractures were “silent,” meaning they caused no symptoms, and were identified only through X-ray or special screening scans.

“This is worrisome because many physicians rely on bone density screening, but that approach missed half the women with vertebral fractures who would be candidates for osteoporosis treatment,” Dr. Greenspan said. “Still, some form of screening for vertebral fractures is appropriate because treatment could prevent more osteoporosis damage and future fractures.”

If you have suffered a fractures of the hip or spine, radiologic evidence for a vertebral fracture or osteoporosis by bone mineral density classification and are interested in being screened for osteoporosis, set up an appointment today by clicking here or calling our office at (540) 347 9220.

The Benefits of Knee Replacement

When knee pain becomes too unbearable for treatments like medication or a walking cane, knee replacement surgery is often the next step.

A knee replacement brings pain relief and an improved quality of life to patients suffering from injuries or arthritis. New research indicates that the benefits could go much further.

A study recently presented at the annual meeting of the American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons suggests that knee replacements improve health and life expectancy. The study examined some 135,000 patients diagnosed with osteoarthritis of the knee from 1997-2009. Some 54,000 of the patients opted for knee replacement.

The results, according to the New York Times Well Blog:

Three years after diagnosis, the knee replacement patients had an 11 percent lower risk of heart failure. And after seven years, their risk of dying for any reason was 50 percent lower.

While experts aren’t ready to accept the study’s findings completely, the results support similar knee replacement studies done in Scandinavia. Continues the blog:

Given the big numbers in the study and the size of the effect, the data strongly suggest that knee replacement may lead to improvements in health and longevity.

If knee pain is reducing your quality of life, knee replacement surgery may be an option. Click here for more on Blue Ridge Orthopaedic & Spine Center’s Joint Replacement Center of Excellence.

How To Prevent Common Running Injuries; By Jen Wilkins, PT

Almost two dozen local runners interacted with Jennifer Wilkins, PT, from Blue Ridge Orthopaedic and Spine Center at a recent seminar on how to recognize and treat running injuries. Hosted by Old Town Athletic Club, the event spotlighted common runner injuries, proper stretching techniques, and how to select the proper footwear

Jennifer Wilkins, PT, explains Achilles Tendonits

The four most common running injuries, according to Wilkins: Achilles tendonitis, plantar fasciitis, lliotibial band syndrome, and patellofemoral pain. Focusing on the hip, knee and foot areas by strengthening surrounding muscles, stretching appropriately, and getting proper rest can help prevent all of these common injuries.

Once an injury has occurred, many runners overcompensate, which can end up worsening the initial problem.  “Stay balanced and work both sides of the body in case of an injury,” Wilkins recommended. “Also, do not over-train yourself. Listen to your body and take a break to allow proper healing”.

Stretching: before and after

Stretching should occur both before and after workouts. Ideally a runner should warm up with a brief, slow run, and then stretch before beginning the workout. Once the workout is finished, a short cool-down run should be completed, following by stretching. Without stretching, muscles will tighten over time and injuries can occur. Alignment is key to proper stretching.

Proper footwear is very important—and that starts with picking the right shoe. Runners with high arches do not have good, natural shock absorbers, and 90% would benefit with a shoe insert, Wilkins said.  Low-arched individuals may need comfort in the toe area if they are toe to heel runners.

Rotating shoes often also is key, Wilkins said. “Shoes should be replaced throughout the year. My strategy is to divide body weight from 75,000 and that will equal how many miles a pair of shoes should ideally be used for,” said Wilkins. She also recommended purchasing two pairs of shoes to alternate between runs to allow decompression and time for the shoes to dry out completely.

Running barefoot?

What about running barefoot or lightweight shoes? It takes a long training program for one to run barefoot or use the lightweight footwear comfortably and safely, Wilkins cautioned. They do not have the normal support of regular running shoes, but a runner can always train appropriate and strengthen the surrounding muscles in the foot, knee, and hip to adjust to the barefoot lifestyle.

Both Blue Ridge Orthopaedic & Spine Center (BROAVA) and Old Town Athletic Club offer wonderful resources for runners. BROAVA provides customized physical therapy programs for athletes and weekend warriors alike, and the Old Town personal training team can craft the perfect workout program for you.

Ready for a good run? Come join us at the inaugural Bodies In Motion 5K on Saturday, May 20, 2012. The run is a fundraising event for Fauquier’s high schools and several local nonprofits, including The Fauquier Food Bank, Boys & Girls Club, and the Fauquier Clinic.

Blue Ridge Orothpaedic And Spine Center Runner's Injury Prevention Seminar