Tag Archives: Physical Therapy Clinic

Physical Therapy: Post Below- Knee Amputation

Below-knee amputation or lower–knee amputation is a surgical process conducted to remove a limb damaged due to any injury, trauma or disease. The process of amputation can be performed at any age, but is more prevalent among the age group of 65 years and older.

What do we mean by Beow-Knee Amputation?

Below-Knee Amputation or BKA is a surgical process to remove the damaged or diseased limb. The main reason behind BKA (Below-Knee Amputation) is peripheral vascular disease or poor circulation in the lower limb. Due to poor circulation; immune or healing responses to injury limit and foot or leg ulcers may form that do not heal. These damaging ulcers may develop infection spreading to bones. Amputation is conducted to remove these diseased tissues and to prevent further infection.

During  BKA, an orthopedic or vascular surgeon removes the diseased limb while saving as much of healthy bone and tissue as possible. The remaining limb is then shaped up, so that it can be used for a prosthetic leg.

How can a Physical Therapist help?

Below-knee Amputation is a very difficult and challenging phase, both emotionally and physically. More energy and strength is required to walk with a prosthesis than normal walking. Your physical therapist can  develop an individualized exercising regime which will not only increase your overall strength, range of motion and flexibility, but will also expedite your recovery and reduce time between amputation and first step with a prosthesis.

Post Amputation Rehabilitation:

Physical Therapist will start your routine as soon as your condition stabilizes and doctor clears you. Your initial treatment may include:

  • Range-of motion and gentle stretching exercises
  • Instructions to roll on the bed, sit on the bedside and safely moving to the chair
  • Educating about the proper positioning of limb to prevent contractures
  • Educating to move about in a wheel chair and to walk and stand with a supportive device.

 Preventing Contractures:

Contractures mean the development of tightness of the soft-tissues which further limits the mobility and motion of the joint. After BKA,  the most common contracture that follows is, at the knee when it becomes flexed and it is difficult to straighten it. If these contracturers are not dealt with, they make it difficult for you to walk properly or wear prosthesis and as well increase the need of supportive device like a walker. Your physical therapist will help you to:

  • Maintain normal  posture and range of motion at your knee and hip
  • Position your limb properly and prevent developing contracture
  • Maintain normal range of motion through stretching and positioning exercises.


Experiencing post-operative swelling is normal. Compression will be maintained by the therapist in order to protect your residual limb and to lessen and control your swelling. The physical therapist will accomplish compression by:

  • Wrapping the limb with elastic bandages
  • Making you wear elastic Shrinker sock.

This also helps to shape the limb in order to prepare it to fit it in prosthetic leg. Your physical therapist will monitor the fit of these devices and as well educate you to use them properly.

Managing Pain:

Your physical therapist will also help you to manage pain in several ways involving:

  • TENS and electrical stimulation may be used where pain is relieved by blocking nerve signals.
  • Manual therapy; involving joint manipulation and massages may be used to improvise circulation and joint motion.
  • Stump management is instructed which includes skin care and stump sock use.

  Other Management Techniques:

  • Your Physical therapist will work with prosthetist in order to prescribe best fit prosthesis for you. Initially, you will receive a temporary prosthesis while your residual limb is healing; thereafter, it will be modified according to your need & requirement
  • Your physical therepist will help you to master using wheel chair and walking with a supportive device like cruthes or walker.
  • Therapist will educate you about using your prosthetic limb successfully and will also make you learn how to take care of your resideual limb with regular skin and hygiene checks, exercising and correct positioning.
  • Therapist will also educate you how to put new prosthesis and take it off.
  • Therapist will also help you to build up tolerance for wearing your prosthetics for longer times while protecting skin intergrity of residual limb.
  • Prosthetic training takes time and physical therapist make you learn to stand, balnce and walk with a prosthetic limb. You may progress gradually and eventually learn to walk independently, without using any supportive device.
  • Your therapist will also continue with stretching and strengthening exercises unless you achieve your fullest potential and become able to perform the activities you used to before amputation.

Contact Alliance Physical Therapy for thorough and agile post below knee amputation rehabilitation. Our professional physical threrapists are experienced at treating patients with amputation conditions. Our dedicated therapists have advance knowledge and are experienced at providing prosthetic training.

Physical Therapy Treatments for Running & Jogging Injuries

Running seems simpler and easier to everybody as all of us start running as toddlers and many of us continue with this activity throughout either for play, sports or exercise. But if the correct form is not maintained, this simple act can lead to serious injuries.

What causes running injuries?

When you start running for fitness, you particularly become prone to running injuries. There are certain stages at which you become more vulnerable to running injuries, like:

  • During the initial 4 to 6 months of running
  • Returning to running after injury
  • Increase in distance of running
  • Increase in speed

But the fact is, during these vulnerable stages, most of the injuries occur due to the training errors. Apart from these, there are several other factors that also contribute towards the running injuries. These are the factors that runners can avoid or prevent:

Training Errors: The most common cause of running injuries is the erroneous training regime. Inadequate stretching, frequent changes in mileage, heightened hill training, interval training and inadequate rest between training sessions all together make up for training errors.

Defective Running Shoe: An athlete should always select the footwear that fits comfortably and can accommodate his particular foot anatomy. You should replace your shoes after its mileage exceeds 500-600 miles.

Surfaces for running: The surface on which you run needs to be smooth, flat, soft and adaptable. Try to avoid concrete or rough road surfaces. Moreover, try to avoid hills initially as they place stress on knees and ankles.

What are the Common Running Injuries?

Most of the running injuries cause by applying repeated force over a long period of time. Whether you are a newbie or vet; sudden changes in training volume can cause any of the following injuries:

Runner’s Knee: When you experience a consistent tender pain around or behind the kneecap; it is a sure sign of patella femoral pain syndrome or runner’s knee. The repetitive force, downhill running, muscular imbalance and weak hips putting stress on the knee cap can cause the condition.

Achilles Tendinitis: The swelling of tissues connecting your heel to lover-leg muscles is known as Achilles Tendinitis. Rapid increase in mileage, improper footwear, tight calf muscles and flat foot contribute towards the condition.

Plantar Fasciitis: Inflammation, irritation or tearing of plantar fascia; tissue on the bottom of the foot is known as plantar fasciitis. Runners experience extreme stiffness or pain in the arch of the foot due to the condition.

Shin Splints: When the muscles and tendons covering the shinbone become inflamed and runners experience stabbing sensations in the shin; the condition is called shin splints.

Stress Fracture: Stress Fractures are the tiny cracks in the bones that occur due to repeatedly applying the greater force than the legs can bear.

Patellar Tendinitis: It is an overuse injury which leads to tiny tears in patellar tendon that connects kneecap to the shin bone.

Pulled Muscles: When due to overuse or inflexibility, a muscle is overstretched, it can tear fibers and tendons causing pulled muscles

Side stitches: Awful pain on the side of the stomach formally known as exercise-related transient abdominal pain (EJAP) caused due to diaphragm spasm because of overwork or poor running posture

Bursitis: Bursitis of hip develops because of the inflammation of a bursa between the hip and the tendon.

What are the Physical Therapy treatments suggested for Running Injuries?

A physical therapist begins treating an injured runner by conducting physical evaluation and asking questions about his running habits, regime, equipments and techniques. The therapists usually begin by suggesting patients to take rest and modifying his/her running habits. In order to prevent recurring injuries; physical therapists develop pre-and post-workout routines for them with strength work, warm-ups, stretches and cool-downs. Other specific treatments may include:

For knees: Physical therapists may suggest stretching and strengthening of hamstring, quadriceps and hip musculature along with cold therapy. Modalities like ultrasound and supportive or corrective taping techniques may also be applied.

For ankle pain and sprains: Physical therapists may suggest strengthening exercises to enhance stability. Foot orthotics may be suggested. Moreover physical therapists may also suggest massage, ice, ultrasound or electrical stimulation for tissue healing.

For Achilles Tendon Pain: Most of the times, therapists suggest rest and limited use as these are best to treat the problem. Apart from this, a therapist may also suggest heat and cold therapy, ultrasound and massage therapy to reduce swelling.

For Foot: Special shoe inserts or foot orthotics and other modification are suggested so that shoe fits properly. Therapeutic exercises accompanied by modalities like manual treatment techniques and ultrasound may also be suggested.

For Shin Splints: Deep tissue massage may be used to reduce inflammation. Supportive taping may also be applied to alleviate stress within the affected region.

For Plantar Fasciitis: Arch supports, soft-tissue massage are used to alleviate pain. Calf stretches before and after workouts may also help.

For Bursitis: Therapists will suggest stretches to restore full hip motion and to reduce friction.

Contact Alliance Physical Therapy for the expert diagnosis and state of art treatment of your pain and injuries. Our diligent team of physical therapists use patient-proven techniques and state-of-art technologies to make you as healthy and fit as before.

What are Symptoms, Causes and Treatment available to treat Hip Bursitis?

Hip Bursitis physical Therapy Treatment

Hip Trochanteric Bursitis is one of the most common reasons of hip pain. This condition affects both the active and inactive individuals but the condition is more common among the middle-aged women or females.

What do we mean by Hip Trochanteric Bursitis?

Hip Trochanteric Bursitis occurs when the bursa that covers the bony point of hip bone (greater trochanter) becomes irritated or inflamed. This is the most commonly inflamed bursa of the hip joint.

What are the causes of Hip Trochanteric Bursitis?

Hip Trochanteric Bursitis occurs due to the combination several factors including:

  • Repetitive stress-injuries resulting from running, bicycling or standing for long hours.
  • Hip injury
  • Spine diseases like; scoliosis or arthritis of the lumbar spine
  • Inequality in leg-length
  • Rheumatoid Arthritis
  • Previous hip surgery or prosthetic implants in the hip
  • Deficiency of Calcium
  • Bone spurs or development of calcium deposits within the tendons
  • Hip muscle tightness or weakness
  • Abnormal hip or knee structure
  • Poor hip or knee mechanics

What are potential symptoms of Hip Trochanteric Bursitis?

The patients suffering from Hip Trochanteric Bursitis may experiences one or more of the following symptoms:

  • Pain and swelling at the affected side of the hip
  • Tenderness on the outside of hip
  • Pain while lying on the affected side
  • Sharp Pain in the hip that changes into a dull ache and travels down the side of leg
  • Pain & stiffness while sitting or walking for prolonged periods
  • Pain while climbing stairs or sitting with legs crossed

How can Physical Therapy help to treat Hip Trochanteric Bursitis?

Physical Therapists typically suggest or prescribe the combination of stretching and strengthening activities to treat the condition and as well to eliminate the pain. Following treatments or strategies may be adopted by your physical therapist to achieve the specific goal:

  • Ice therapy may be used to reduce the inflammation of bursa
  • Electrotherapy or deep-tissue massage technique may be used to reduce pain & irritation.
  • Range of motion exercises are prescribed to restore normal mobility to the back, hip and knee
  • In order to decrease muscular tension, stretching techniques may be applied to the lower body.
  • Hand-on treatments may be used to move your muscles and joints in order to improve their strength & motion
  • Strengthening exercises may be applied to eliminate excessive strain at the trochanter.
  • Your Physical therapist may develop a safe and customized progressive resistance program to strengthen your lower extremity
  • Functional training may be provided to help you to safely transit back to your normal or routine activities
  • Patient education will be provided in order to eliminate the risk of re-injury. You will be educated about safer & controlled body movements

Contact Alliance Physical Therapy for the state-of-art and efficient treatment of any of your musculoskeletal problems or diseases. Our professional and diligent Physical Therapists use patient-proven methods and top-notch techniques to treat your problems and help you to get back to your work as early as possible.

Cubital Tunnel Syndrome

Hand Health Resources considers Cubital Tunnel Syndrome as the second most common nerve entrapment syndrome occurring in the upper body or arm. Increased compression or pressure on the ulnar nerve in the elbow gives rise to this condition. Along with discomfort, this pathology may lead to the loss of hand functioning.

Cubital Tunnel Syndrome

What do you understand by Cubital Tunnel Syndrome?

Ulnar nerve is a crucial nerve running through your arm and is responsible for sensation and movement of the forearm and hand as well. This Ulnar nerve passes through a tunnel of soft tissues named as ‘cubital tunnel’ that runs under a bony bump at the inner side of your elbow. The syndrome is called ‘cubital tunnel syndrome’ as it results due to the entrapment or irritation of nerve within the confines of cubital tunnel. This condition affects more men than women and the athletic performance of the athletes who are engaged in sports requiring strong hand or wrist movements. The entrapment causes tingling, numbness and pain along the inside of your arm down the ring and little finger.

What causes Cubital Tunnel Syndrome?

Usually, the syndrome occurs when the Ulnar nerve within the constricted enclosure of cubital tunnel is stretched compressed or irritated as there is a very little soft tissue to protect it. Other factors leading to the Cubital Tunnel Syndrome may include:

  • Keeping the elbow bent for longer periods or repeated bending of the elbow
  • Back and forth sliding of the nerve over the medial epicondyle
  • Leaning on your elbow for longer periods of time
  • Fluid build-up in the elbow
  • A direct blow to the inside of the elbow as in the case of sports like; baseball, tennis, rugby, football etc.
  • Athletic activities including repetitive overhead motions like; javelin throw, tennis serve or baseball
  • Failure to warm up  and stretch properly before a sport
  • Elbow fractures, bone spurs, trauma or cysts

What are the treatment options suggested to treat Cubital Tunnel Syndrome?

Cubital Tunnel Syndrome usually responds to Physical Therapy. Initially the therapists advise to modify and avoid the activities, postures and positions causing Cubital Tunnel Syndrome. Other treatment options may include:

  • Therapists will advice to avoid repeated flexion, over leaning and pressurizing the elbow
  • Gentle exercises may be prescribed to ease the ulnar nerve glide through Cubital Tunnel
  • therapist may recommend or customize an elbow splint to keep your arm straight
  • Stretching exercises may be prescribed to achieve full range of motion
  • Therapist may provide a home exercise program and educate you about proper body mechanics
  • Strengthening exercises like; strengthening of muscle groups, bending and straightening of elbow, forearm movement may be prescribed
  • Nerve Gliding exercises may be advised to help the arm and wrist from getting stiff
  • Range of motion exercises may be prescribed to enhance the mobility without causing pain or discomfort
  • Special exercises to help the Ulnar glide and the exercises that mimic your daily and work activities may be prescribed

Contact Alliance Physical Therapy for the state of the art treatment of any of your musculoskeletal injury or problem. Our certified therapists use patient proven methods and develop customize treatment plans according to your needs and urgencies.


Alliance Physical Therapy Clinics offer Treatments for Auto- Accident Injuries


Auto Injuries Rehab

Auto-Accidents are said to happen every 5 seconds in the United States and these figures continue to rise. Victims of auto-accidents usually suffer from skeletal, muscular, neurological and soft-tissue injuries which are not detectable initially as they do not cause much pain. So the victims ignore them and do not seek professional treatment. This causes the biggest blunder. With auto-accident injuries, immediate and specialized treatment is needed to avoid developing long term discomfort and chronic pain. A pro-active Physical Therapy treatment and Rehabilitation plan can save the victims from surgical interventions and long term reliance on medications as well.

Physical Therapy modalities while conditioning your muscles and bones also help to alleviate pain and relieve the debilitating effects of auto-accident injuries. Vehicular injuries often develop the symptoms like; back pain, whiplash, fatigue, headache, muscle-spasms, nausea, neck pain, tendinitis, shoulder pain, problems with vision, dizziness etc. Physical Therapists are experts at diagnosing, evaluating and treating these injuries. They re-align your vertebrae and help to restore your lost structural balance and treat soft tissue injuries with customized rehabilitation program.

Various structural evaluation techniques including; X-rays, Spinal Joint Movement Evaluation, Gait and Postural Analysis, Joint Range-of Motion Testing, Strength and Reflex Evaluation, CAT or CT scan and MRI are conducted and adopted to detect and correct various musculoskeletal injuries.  Physical Therapy is mainly directed towards maximizing the motion of spine, curing spinal disc, alleviating muscle spasm and improvising the muscular strength. Following Physical Therapy modalities are used to treat auto-accident injuries:

  • Hands-On Therapy and therapeutic equipments are used for the vestibulo-ocular rehabilitation of the victims.
  • Corrective exercises are used to stretch and strengthen the damaged muscles.
  • Range-of Motion exercises are prescribed to improvise function and mobility
  • Spinal Decompression therapy is employed to relieve back pain due to herniated disc or Sciatica
  • Therapeutic exercises targeting and strengthening the joints are suggested.

So if you have been a victim of vehicular accident and sustained a musculoskeletal injury and want to get relief without pain-killers and surgical interventions, then Physical Therapy is the most influential treatment available.

Contact Alliance Physical Therapy for the skilled and prompt treatment of auto-accident injuries. Our board certified therapists are specialized in diagnosing, treating and managing auto-accident whiplash injuries and have helped numerous patients to recover successfully from whiplash.

Knobby Knees

Osgood Schlatter Disease

Osgood Schlatter Disease (OSD) or Knobby Knees is a common cause of knee-pain among the teenagers. This pain mostly affects the boys between 13 to 14 years of age and the girls between 11 to 12 years. This problem mostly occurs during the growth spurt.

What do we understand by Osgood Schlatter Disease?

Osgood Schlatter Disease is an overuse injury of the knee resulting in pain and swelling below the knee cap over the shin bone. This disease is marked by the inflammation of the bone cartilage and /or tendon at the top of the shin bone, where the tendon from the knee cap attaches. It commonly affects the teens who are engaged in vigorous sports activities which involve lots of running, jumping and swift direction changes, as in; basket ball, gymnastics, soccer, figure skating, ballet and volley ball.

What are the potential signs and symptoms of Osgood Schlatter Disease?

Osgood Schlatter Disease usually harms one knee at a time but it may affect the both knees. It lasts for months and recurs until the child stops growing. Following signs and symptoms may be observed in the teens with OSD:

  • Pain below the knee cap
  • Severe pain during and after the activity
  • A tiny and soft bony bump under the knee cap
  • The swelled area becomes tender to pressure
  • Limping after the physical activity
  • Pain Easing with Rest
  • Tightness in the muscles surrounding the knee.

What are the factors leading to the Osgood Schlatter Disease?

At times, Osgood Schlatter Disease develops for no apparent reason. But the below mentioned factors may lead to the condition:

  • Repeated small injuries to knee before the growth spurt is over
  • Overuse of thigh muscles resulting in swelling
  • Repeated strain on the attachment of the patellar ligament
  • Formation of callus (healing bone) resulting into hard bony bump

What are the treatment options suggested to heal Osgood Schlatter Disease?

Osgood Schlatter Disease usually heals itself after the child’s bones stop growing. Till then, a customized physical therapy treatment program targeted at relieving pain and swelling are practiced, following techniques are employed to treat the symptoms:

  • Activity modification and in more severe cases, activity elimination is advised
  • R.I.C.E. Therapy (Rest, Ice, Compression and Elevation) is suggested to relieve pain
  • Stretching exercises; concentrated on the stretching of thigh muscles, are recommended
  • Strengthening exercises may be advised to stabilize the knee joint
  • To shield the sensitive area, the physical therapists may recommend to wear knee pads during the sport
  • Bracing, strapping and wrapping of knee area may be recommended for support

Contact Alliance Physical Therapy

Contact Alliance Physical Therapy to proficiently manage and relieve any type of musculoskeletal pain. Our diversified team of trained and certified therapists will develop a customized treatment plan for you while taking due care of your needs and urgencies and will help you to regain health and proper functioning.

Becker Muscular Dystrophy

Becker Muscular Dystrophy Treatment

What do we mean by Becker Muscular Dystrophy?

Muscular Dystrophy belongs to that group of genetic degenerative disorders which involve progressive weakness and wasting of voluntary muscles of the body. This condition is named after the German doctor Peter Emil Becker who first described the disorder.

Becker Muscular Dystrophy (BMD) is among those common nine kinds of dystrophies; which are characterized by the slow weakness and wasting of skeletal muscles that are used for movement and heart muscles as well. Such dystrophies are common among the men than women. Being a genetic disorder; your family history of disease increases your risk of getting affected.

Despite of being more common in men than women; males usually inherit it from their mothers, i.e. females are the carriers of this disease but they usually do not exhibit any symptoms.

How is the Becker Muscular Dystrophy an inherited disease?

When a particular flawed gene or mutation of a particular gene on the X-chromosome makes its associated protein (named as dystrophin) partially functional, this results in the Becker Muscular Dystrophy. That is the reason that Becker Muscular Disease is also known as ‘X-linked recessive genetic defect’ i.e. it is inherited due to a defective gene on the X-chromosome.

Males manifest the symptoms of this disease because they have only one X- chromosome. While the females have two X- chromosomes, so they usually do not show any signs or symptoms as the healthier X- chromosome compensate for the defective one.

What are the signs and symptoms of Becker Muscular Disease?

The symptoms usually begin to appear during the childhood and are diagnosed by the age of 11 years. But the severity of the disease varies from person to person. The symptoms may include:

• Gradual but progressive muscle weakness
• Muscles cramps on exercising
• Inability to walk independently by the age of 16
• Loss of walking by the age of 40 -60 and at times, 20-30
• Severe upper extremity and trunk muscle weakness
• Toe-Walking and frequent falls
• Difficulty in breathing and Heart disease; particularly, Dilated Cardiomyopathy
• Skeletal and Muscular Deformities
• Fatigue
• Difficulty in getting up from the floor and Climbing stairs
• Loss of balance, co-ordination and muscle mass

What are the treatment options suggested to treat Becker Muscular Dystrophy?

The treatment is generally focused at treating the symptoms and enhancing the patient’s quality of life. Treatment options suggested are generally supportive and include the following:
• Physical therapy is suggested to encourage the activity as the inactivity (like bed rest) can further worsen the condition. Muscle strengthening exercises are suggested to maintain muscle strength.
• Massage, Compression treatment and night Splints may be advised to treat muscle cramps.
• Use of assistive devices like; knee, leg or back braces are suggested to keep the muscles flexible.
• Occupational Therapy is advised; where patients are helped and taught to use orthopedic appliances like; wheel chairs and other assistive devices as well to improve movement and training for doing the daily tasks in new ways is also provided.

Contact Alliance Physical Therapy for the adequate and enhanced treatment of any of your neuromuscular disorder. Our certified therapists develop customized treatment plans according to your needs and preferences and utilize patient proven treatment techniques to heighten the quality of your life.

Skier’s Thumb: Causes, Symptoms and Treatments

What do we mean by Skier’s Thumb?

Skier’s Thumb is described as an injury caused to Ulnar Collateral Ligament (UCL) of thumb joint. The twisting and tearing away of UCL results this condition. Any injury to UCL weakens thumb’s gripping strength and as well causes loss of function. In other words, it unstables or loosens the thumb joint.

As this injury recurrently happens during skiing accidents, therefore it is referred to as Skier’s Thumb. But it does not imply that this injury occurs to skiers’ only. It can affect anybody who falls on an outstretched hand with sufficient force applied to thumb that extends it away from the index finger.

Skier's Thumb Treatment & Management

What are the causes of Skier’s Thumb?

Following conditions can be cited as the common causes of Skier’s Thumb:

  • A straight away or direct injury to your thumb
  • Extending away of thumb from the palm of your hand
  • Falling on your open hand with tucked in thumb
  • Repetitive and gradual traumas to your thumb
  • Slipping on the ski-slopes while holding or hands strapped to ski pole

What are the signs and symptoms of Skier’s Thumb?

  • Pain, tenderness and swelling at the inner base of your thumb
  • Bruising
  • Difficulty in holding objects and moving your thumb
  • Difficulty in applying force using your thumb
  • Ability to pinch and grasp things with thumb and index finger gets impaired
  • Difficulty in throwing objects
  • Unstable Thumb
  • A lump in your thumb
  • Deformed thumb

What are the treatment options available for Skier’s Thumb?

The treatment for Skier’s Thumb depends upon the extent of injury, patient’s condition and his specific needs and requirements. Following treatment options are followed to treat Skier’s Thumb:

  • To ease pain and swelling, ice pack may be placed on your thumb for 2 or 3 days after injury
  • To immobilize or reduce the movement of thumb, support devices like; splint, brace or thumb cast may be used.

The splints or thumb casts are worn for 4 to 6 weeks and thereafter, a physical therapy regime is followed and adopted to mobilize the thumb again. It includes:

  • Ultra sound therapy; where sound waves are used to treat injury to soft tissues.
  • Massage Therapy is administered to repair the affected ligament.
  • Mobilization exercises are performed to restore thumb functioning and movement.
  • Physical Therapists make use of Hand Therapy balls and Therapeutic Putty to restore thumb strength and dexterity.
  • Strengthening exercises are performed to strengthen the otherwise loosened thumb.

Contact Alliance Physical Therapy for efficient treatment of any of your musculoskeletal problems. Our patients’ well being and care are our top most priorities. Our brigade of exuberant, determined and acknowledged physical therapists strives to provide finest clinical treatments to our patients in friendly and caring environment.

Identifying and Treating Cluster Headaches

What are Cluster Headaches?

Cluster Headaches are one-sided headaches which occur in cyclic patterns or clusters and are marked by the tearing of the eyes and stuffy nose. It is amongst the most agonizing and traumatic types of pain. Such headaches occur at the same time every year and is much more painful if it strikes you at night as compared to the day time. Episodes of pain occur constantly for one week to one year.

Who normally get affected by Cluster Headaches?

Men are at higher risk of getting affected by Cluster Headaches than women. These headaches can strike at any age but are more likely to occur at adolescent or middle age. These are commonly inherent and are transmitted through genes.

What triggers Cluster Headaches?

The exact causes of Cluster Headaches are still not known to the physicians, but  the following are considered as the potential causes of Cluster Headaches:

  • Sudden release of Histamine or Serotonin
  • In taking alcohol or Smoking cigarettes
  • Bright Lights
  • Exertion
  • Heat
  • Nitrites rich food
  • Cocaine
  • Stress and Anxiety
  • Season(common in spring or autumn)

What are the symptoms associated with Cluster Headaches?

These headaches arise frequently and without any warning signals but the pain most commonly attacks 2 or 3 hrs. after you fall asleep. Following can be enlisted as the signs and symptoms of Cluster Headaches:

  • Excessive or throbbing pain; commonly concentrated around or in one eye
  • One sided pain; from neck to temples
  • Uneasiness
  • Excessive Tearing
  • Redness in the affected side eye
  • One sided runny nose
  • Sweating
  • Swelling around the affected side eye
  • Drooping eyelids

What are the treatments available for Cluster Headaches?

Physicians adopt two types of techniques to treat Cluster Headaches viz.

  • Abortive Medications: These medications are prescribed to treat pain when it strikes. Imitrex or some other triptans are prescribed to subside pain when it occurs. At times, oxygen therapy is also administered, where you have to inhale oxygen through face mask.
  • Preventive Medications :  These medicines are prescribed by your doctor to minimize the time duration of cluster headaches and to reduce the severity of pain during cluster headaches.

How Physical Therapists can help to treat Cluster Headaches?

Physical Therapists can assist you in getting rid of  your Cluster Headaches beyond medications. Practicing exercises under the surveillance of an expert and trained Physical Therapist can enable you to relax muscle tension and as well to relieve stress. Physical Therapists prescribe following exercises to treat Cluster Headaches :

  •    Physical Therapists administer various relaxation techniques to help you to relax the muscles of your neck, jaw and shoulders. Progressive Relaxation techniques  are also administered and practiced to relax each and every muscle of your body.
  •    Cluster Headaches occur due to stress. Your breathing patterns get disturbed, when you are stressed. So to alter these disrupted breathing patterns, Physical Therapists practice different breathing exercises and make you relieved. These exercises are really advantageous when you are suffering from pain.
  •    Exercises that help to alleviate stress are followed. These help to reduce the occurrence ands severity of headaches. These also heighten the level of beta- endorphins which are your natural  stress relievers.

Contact Alliance Physical Therapy for the efficient management of any type of pain. Timely diagnosis and treatment can save you from further pain and suffering and as well help you to lead a healthy and quality life. 

Vestibular Rehabilitation Therapy

What Is Vestibular Rehabilitation Therapy?

Vestibular Rehabilitation Therapy (VRT) is a specific exercise based program that is designed and developed by a professional Physical Therapist to maximize the natural bodily capacities to compensate for the balance disorders and as well to lessen the dizziness related problems. Through Vestibular Rehabilitation Therapy physical therapists treat variety of symptoms related to vestibular disorders viz.

  • Dizziness
  • Vertigo
  • Imbalance
  • Nausea
  • Anxiety
  • Fatigue
  • Trouble concentrating
  • Blurred Vision
  • Muscle or Neck Stiffness or pain
  • Headaches

Which are the tests conducted under Vestibular Rehabilitation Therapy?

Before designing an efficient Vestibular Rehabilitation Therapy plan for a patient, following tests are conducted to recognize his symptoms and to identify problem areas:

  • Examination of patient’s medical history
  • Identifying and measuring balance, gait and posture
  • Eye- head Co-ordination tests
  • Questions are asked in form of Questionnaire to measure the severity of symptoms

What type of exercises is prescribed under Vestibular Rehabilitation Therapy?

The brain of a patient suffering from vestibular disorders can not depend upon the information it receives from vestibular system. As a result of this, his ability to maintain balance gets affected and the symptoms start getting worse and heightened, day by day. To overcome such conditions, vestibular exercises including the following are practiced under Vestibular Rehabilitation Therapy to improvise gait and gaze stability of a patient:

  • VOR Stimulation Exercises: This include the exercises which help to stabilize gaze and visual focus as well.During the course, the patient is asked to fix his vision on a set target while moving his or her head.
  • Ocular Motor Exercises:  This include a course of exercises, where the patient traces the field with the movement of his eyes only, i.e. without stirring his or her head.
  • Balance Retraining Exercises: This incorporates the set of exercises, which aid to better the co-ordination of muscular responses and structuring of sensory information as well, which in turn results in improved balance control.
  • Canal Re-positioning Maneuvers: These are administered to dislocate the debris with in the affected canal. This debris consists of small crystals of calcium carbonate that get collected with in the canal of inner ear.
  • Aquatic Physiotherapy: It is beneficial for the patients suffering from the problem of chronic dizziness. During the course, all of the exercises are administered in a pool.

 If the patients suffering from vestibular disorders perform their exercises correctly and regularly, in most of the cases the balance problems are improvised ad more over symptoms like muscle tension, dizziness, vertigo, headaches, fatigue begin to diminish or disappear completely with time.

Alliance Physical Therapy offers a wide range of support services to the patients. Our trained and qualified physical therapists provide reliable and customized treatment plans as per requirement and condition of the patients and help them to rehabilitate as soon as possible.