resourcesABOUT MT AUTHOR GUIDELINES CLASSIFIEDS EDITORIAL CALENDAR MEDIA GUIDE MASSAGE MART SCHOOLS & EDUCATION FEEDBACK
A Chinese Medicine Story: An Interview with Mazin Al-Khafaji
Mazin Al-Khafaji's work has interested me for years. In February 2014, we invited him for the second time to speak at the Southwest Symposium in Austin, Texas.
Knee Pain From the Kinetic Chain
As practitioners of manual medicine, chiropractors often treat patients suffering from knee pain.
Finders Keepers: The Secret to Relationship-Based Marketing
Becoming a successful practitioner has less to do with what you learned in school, and more to do with your ability to find new patients and keep them!
Remembering Clarence Gonstead and 50 Years of the Gonstead Clinic
Dr. Clarence Selmer Gonstead (1898-1978) took chiropractic practice from back-alley bone setting to an understandable biomechanical science. His life was dedicated to clinical competency.
By the Numbers: 3 Common Financial Mistakes With Major Consequences
Warren Buffett is on record for sharing the hidden art of becoming wealthy and making it simple enough for anyone to grasp.
A History Worth Telling
The popularity and the use of acupuncture for the treatment of animals in the United States is at its peak.
Vaccines and Chiropractic: Evidence-Based Medicine or Medical Dogma?
Right or wrong, the chiropractic profession has historically been against vaccinations. However, a growing trend within the profession is seeking to reverse this position.
Immunizations by Colorado DCs: Really?
You probably didn't hear about it, but back on Nov. 21, 2013, the Board of Directors of the Colorado Chiropractic Association (CCA) adopted "immunization authority" for Colorado DCs as its No. 2 legislative goal.
A Guide for Talking to Doctors about Acupuncture and Brain Chemistry
Before I begin any discussion of how to talk about the effects of acupuncture on brain chemistry, nervous and endocrine function, it is essential to understand just what physicians most need help with.
Physical Exam 101: The Hands
I am sure you are familiar with the old adage: "When the only tool in your toolbox is a hammer, everything starts to look like a nail."
Peer Points: Always Seeking To Grow
Ellen "Kiki" Geary has spent the last decade honing her craft. As a specialist in integrative holistic care, she went straight from completing her master's degree in acupuncture and chinese herbal medicine from Bastyr University to building a successful and thriving practice in the small community of Anacortes, Washington.
New Medical Technologies You Need to Know
We're all familiar with how fast computers become obsolete, as well as the rapid pace of development in the field of cell phone technology. The latest smart phones are far more powerful than desktop computers were only a few years ago.
Medical Qigong for the Heart: Part III
Part 1 and Part II of this series focused on the physical aspect of the Heart and mental emotional aspects of the Heart respectively. Now, I would like to focus on the spiritual aspect of the Heart.
Why You Should Include the Single-Leg Stance Test in Every Patient Assessment
The single-leg stance (SLS) test, also known as the single-limb stance test, unipedal stance test or one-legged stance / balance test, is often used in the geriatric population to assess static postural and balance control.
Are You a Bad Chiropractic Patient?
My father was a great DC. In fact, as you might expect, he was the doctor of chiropractic I measured all other doctors against. Sadly, he died at age 61 when I was in my early 30s.
Building From the Bottom Up
I caught up with my dear friend Honora Wolfe, in her Colorado painting studio where, if she is not praying in Bhutan or doing charitable work in a Nepali free clinic, she spends most of her time now.
Curbing Label Overwhelm
For the average consumer, reading a food package can be overwhelming: natural, organic, non-GMO, gluten free, free range ... you get the picture.
Coding for the Subluxation: ICD-9 vs. ICD-10
When I attended chiropractic school, I was taught that chiropractors approach health care differently than the traditional medical establishment.
Fibromyalgia: Put the Pain in Its Place
While some fibromyalgia patients respond favorably to regular chiropractic care, others experience minimal relief. Unfortunately, many of these patients must rely on pharmacological management to relieve their constant pain.
March, 2010, Vol. 10, Issue 03
Trigger Points in the Fibularis Tertius Muscle
By David Kent, LMT, NCTMB
Ankle and heel pain is a common complaint. Patients often are surprised to discover their pain is caused by trigger points in the fibularis tertius, a small and easily overlooked muscle in the front of the lower leg. This article will review the anatomy of the fibularis tertius muscle and discuss the trigger points that cause lateral ankle and heel pain, as well as treatment techniques and ways to educate your patients about the causes of their pain.
The name of this muscle has changed over the years. Fibularis tertius has replaced the older term, peroneus tertius. Peroneal was derived from the Greek terminology meaning "a pin." Pointed objects like sewing needles were termed perone by the Greeks. The Latin word fibula also means "a pin or skewer." In some animals, the fibula often is very narrow and has sharp tips (styloid processes), thus it is probable that this bone was named for its resemblance to a pin, or sewing or knitting needle. Tertius is the Latin word for "third," or "concerning the third." This muscle attaches to the lower third of the fibula and is one of three muscles attaching to the fibula that everts the foot.
The lower leg contains two bones: the tibia and fibula. The tibia, the bone on the medial side, is the larger weight-bearing bone and forms the medial malleolus. The fibula, the smaller slender bone on the lateral side, is not a weight-bearing bone and forms the lateral malleolus.
The leg is divided into three fascial compartments: anterior, posterior and lateral. The fibularis tertius is located in the anterior compartment, whereas the lateral compartment contains the fibularis longus and brevis. The interosseous membrane that runs between the fibula and tibia divides the anterior and posterior compartments. The anterior intermuscular septum divides anterior and lateral compartments. The posterior intermuscular septum divides posterior and lateral compartments. (See Photo 1) Proximally, the fibularis tertius attaches to the distal third of the anterior surface of the fibula, the interosseous membrane and the adjacent intermuscular septum. In the foot, it attaches on the dorsum of the base of the fifth metatarsal. (See Photo 2)
The primary actions of the fibularis tertius are dorsiflexion of the ankle and eversion of the foot. The fibularis tertius dorsiflexes the ankle along with three other muscles: fibularis longus, fibularis brevis and tibialis anterior. It also acts to evert the foot, assisting fibularis longus and brevis.
It is important to assess, treat, lengthen and strengthen, as appropriate, the synergistic and antagonistic muscles that cross the joint. A muscle-movement chart is a quick reference tool that groups joints by body region and then lists the muscles that create each specific joint movement. A muscle movement chart also shows the degrees of normal range of motion (ROM) for each joint. This information provides a list of muscles to target and helps therapists develop a comprehensive treatment plan with goals that include improving ROM.
Patient complaints typically include weakness in the ankle and/or pain and tenderness in the ankle, behind and over the lateral malleolus. Whenever a patient reports a trigger point during treatment, take a moment to show them the specific referral pattern on a trigger point chart. Utilizing charts as visual aids to educate your patients about trigger point patterns is a powerful way to demonstrate your knowledge and understanding of the patient's pain. (See "Tools to Succeed for Massage Therapists," MT May 2009.)
Trigger points in the fibularis tertius muscle usually are palpated proximal and anterior to the lateral malleolus. The referral pattern for fibularis tertius trigger points is "pain and tenderness along the anterolateral aspect of the ankle with a spillover patterns projecting downward behind the lateral malleolus to the lateral aspect of the heel."1 (See Photo 3)
There are many reasons trigger points form in the fibularis tertuis. Sometimes they are caused by activities and/or events that occurred months, years or even decades before the onset of the chronic pain. A few examples include inversion sprains of the ankle, wearing too-tight running shoes, work boots or ski boots, direct trauma, a new activity requiring overuse of the muscle, and weakness from prolonged periods of immobility due to injury.
Postural analysis photos will reveal the stresses patients place on their muscles. (See "Getting Comfortable with Postural Analysis," MT July 2008) Intake forms, postural analysis, gait evaluation and orthopedic assessments will help you uncover a lot of information that will prepare you for the hands-on treatment.
Muscle Test: Palpation of the bony landmarks coupled with muscle testing will ensure you are specifically isolating and thoroughly treating the correct muscle. To muscle test the fibularis tertius, place the patient in a supine or sitting position. Support the patient's leg with one hand just above the ankle joint so your palm is cradling the Achilles tendon. With the other hand, apply pressure against the lateral side and dorsal surface of the foot with pressure in the direction of plantar flexion of the ankle and inversion of the foot. Instruct the patient to dorsiflex the ankle and evert the foot while you apply resistance.
Check for Sensitivity: Palpate along the belly and tendon of the muscle to check for sensitivity. Treatment should not cause pain.
Fifth Metatarsal: Treat the tendon attachment on the dorsal surface of the base of the fifth metatarsal. Apply static pressure and then integrate muscle-fiber and cross-fiber techniques. Start on the base of the fifth metatarsal and follow the tendon anterior to the lateral malleolus. (See Photo 4)
Tendon: Apply lubrication to the skin. Using distal to proximal gliding strips on the muscle, follow the tendon along the front of the lateral malleolus.
Belly: Glide distal to proximal on the belly of the muscle. Treat the attachment on the anterior lower third of the fibula. (See Photo 5)
Conclude your sessions with a brief explanation of the problems you identified and how ongoing massage therapy can help. Tell your patients you will design a customized treatment plan to address the soft-tissue components of their pain, and educate them on the use of ice, heat and other methods of self-care. Provide a stretching routine so patients can continue to improve and maintain themselves between visits. Show your patients proper home and work ergonomics (using computers and phones, lifting, etc.).
I wish you best in the treatment room. Please drop me a line to tell me about your results.
Click here for more information about David Kent, LMT, NCTMB.
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