resourcesABOUT MT AUTHOR GUIDELINES CLASSIFIEDS EDITORIAL CALENDAR MEDIA GUIDE MASSAGE MART SCHOOLS & EDUCATION FEEDBACK
Calcium Helps Prevent Colorectal Cancer
Over the past 25 to 30 years, studies have suggested calcium may confer protection against colorectal cancer.
To The Finish Line With the Help of TCM
When acupuncturist Eddy De Smedt pursued a career in Traditional Chinese Medicine, he knew he wanted to make a difference.
Lime Jello on Morphine
Taste is in the eyes... actually the mouth... of the beholder. My food preferences have changed, lightening from the food of my youth. My parents loved heavy eastern European cuisine and I loved it as a child. Now I enjoy leaner, healthier whole foods.
Healing With TCM at San Quentin State Prison
For the prisoners at San Quentin State Prison, life-sentences are the reality of every day life. It is not often that prisoners get the opportunity to use alternative medicine to deal with common ailments they encounter behind bars such as, depression, anxiety and pain.
Managing Today's Fertility Patient
I recently received an email from one of my fertility patients: "Got my lab results back. FSH is 11, AMH is 0.7. My doctor said these numbers aren't good. I guess I'm infertile. Just as a thought. Just set up an appointment to speak with an adoption agency."
Transparency and Accountability: Q&A With the CCE
Every profession needs an organization dedicated to upholding the quality and integrity of its degree programs and educational institutions.
Pulse Diagnosis: What We Know
I am still finding pearls of wisdom from the books and papers that I inherited from my pulse diagnosis mentor Jim Ramholz.
Managing Patient Expectations About Acupuncture
Last year, I attended the Pacific Symposium in San Diego for the first time in six or seven years. It was the 25th anniversary of this event, and on one evening there was a panel discussion with the title; "What is Qi?."
The Tao of Gender
If you think gender is as simple as having a new client check off the "male" or "female" box on your intake form, we hope this article will expand your understanding and thus the reach of your health care.
5 Ways to Occupy Occupational Health
Despite the progress that has been made to better protect workers, occupational health and safety remains a priority area for many national governmental organizations due to the widespread problem of occupationally related morbidity and mortality.
The X Factor in Clinical Research: The Patient
It was the great baseball legend, former New York Yankees catcher Yogi Berra – he of countless aphorisms, each with a mind-bending twist – who once declared, "You can observe a lot by watching."
The Heart Protector
On the physical level, the Pericardium is a double-layered sac of fibrous tissue that envelops the Heart. The space between the layers is filled with serous fluid that protects the Heart from external shock or trauma and lubricates to allow for normal Heart movement.
Understanding and Identifying Pediatric Growth-Plate Fractures
In general, fractures in children heal well with little intervention as long as the alignment is good. Fractures involving the growth plate, however, are a different issue. In fact, growth-plate injuries are the primary reason for the subspecialty of pediatric orthopedics.
Saying No to Medicine
An interesting article recently appeared in Men's Journal titled "When to Say No to Your Doctor." The article begins with the summary statement above and effectively arms readers with information that will help them "take more responsibility for your own health care, because you can't be sure anyone else is.
The Wonders of Light Therapy: An Interview with Wes Burwell
I first met Wes Burwell in 2011 when he was teaching a class on light. Since then, every time I hear him speak, his understanding of the benefits, function and capacity of light has evolved.
Web Marketing: Content Is King
Google's sweeping updates to its search algorithms over the past few years have brought a paradigm shift in how you can optimize your chiropractic website to gain maximum marketing leverage.
Help Patients Achieve Optimal Vitamin D Levels
Much research has been done on vitamin D levels and their impact on health; optimal levels have been correlated with a reduced risk of developing numerous conditions.
Simple Ways To Find True Happiness
Patients in our clinics are always seeking happiness. As their health advocate, we need to ensure we inform them that in order to find happiness, they have to make sure to identify what makes them happy in the first place.
Talking to Patients About Healthy Aging
I've noticed that a particular category of patients seems to make up more and more of my practice – they work out, but still experience lots of degenerative joint disease (DJD) issues.
Jingei Diagnosis: An Effective and Powerful Diagnostic
I graduated from the Kotatama Institute under the direction of Drs. Masahilo and Katsuharu Nakazono in 1984. As a student, I was exposed to the practice of most of the various theories and modalites of Oriental Medicine.
Blaming the Gluteus Medius, Overlooking the Deltoid
The gluteus medius (Gmed) is commonly written about, strengthened and blamed for many conditions, and rightfully so. After all, the Gmed plays a role in pelvic stability, hip motor control and lower-quarter dynamic movements.
July, 2013, Vol. 13, Issue 07
Using My Massage Therapy Skills to Help Save a Career
By Debbie Roberts, LMT
I always like to bring you a real case and a real story. I know you, too, will someday probably have that same type of client that needs your help with treatment. This time, I am helping an oral surgeon save his career by saving his hands.When this doctor presented in my office seeking help, he had been looking at surgery on his hands as his only option to save his career. It took him 10 years to complete his degree and 10 years of practicing to almost lose everything he had worked so hard for.
While working with him, it became clear to me that a massage therapist looking to specialize and gain a reputation as the one to seek out for hand dysfunction could have a forever busy practice. Just go to YouTube and look at what small instruments and awkward positions that this profession does on a daily basis. Now, think how many other professions use similar intricate tools. Those professionals need a therapist that can take a no nonsense approach to helping them save the career they have spent so much time and money on to achieve.
Working with hands or feet is very challenging for the massage therapist in terms of how it affects your hands. The work has to be very meticulous and that can be very wearing to your own hands. So I have tried to offer suggestions of how to do treatment in a manner to get the job done and have less wear on you.
He presented with aching hands all the time, he was beginning to lose grip strength, his fingers had become stiff feeling and it was affecting his ability to close his hand, he had bilateral thumb pain and bilateral numbness and tingling in the ring and little finger. He had more thumb pain on the right, but said this was due to the fact that three months ago he was playing with his son and his finger had been abruptly pulled backwards. He also complained of right shoulder pain.
The first thing we want to do is assess or take a screen of the patient. A screen helps you rule out, should they be in your office or do they need other higher medical care. Just a reminder to stay within your scope of practice, a screen is not to be used as diagnoses, it is to be used as a tool to understand movement quality. You are looking at how healthy or dysfunctional is the individual's joint movement. This helps you determine the complex of muscles and fascia to be treated. When taking a screen, you will want to look above and below the joint being questioned. From the screen, you can develop an organized logical approach to treatment and suggestions of home care.
Screen Number One
Rule out cervical involvement by looking at the quality of cervical motion and asking the question throughout the screen: is there pain or no pain? In this case, he has presented with ulnar nerve involvement. Also ask if they feel any referral pain when going through the range of motion. Cervical flexion: they should be able to touch their chin to chest 45 degrees. Cervical extension: 45 degrees with mouth closed. Cervical side bending 20-40 (watch to see if the shoulder rises indicating how tight the trapezius muscle can be). Cervical rotation 70-90 degrees without pain. See reference.
Specific to this case because he had shoulder pain, I also went through all of the shoulder range of motion tests and he had a positive impingement sign. He also had a very stiff neck. We are addressing all of his concerns from the screen, but for this article I have kept the focus on the hand and forearm.
Screen Number Two
Assess their wrist and elbow range of motion. Wrist flexion: 80 degrees. Wrist extension: 70 degrees. Ulnar Deviation: 45 degrees. Radial Deviation 20 degrees. Supination 90 degrees. Pronation 90 degrees. Elbow extension 0 degrees and Elbow flexion 145. See reference.
Screen Number Three
Muscle test wrist flexion, extension, pronation and supination. Muscle test elbow extension and flexion. Muscle test all the ranges of each digit including the thumb. Each finger may flex, extend, abduct and adduct and also circumduct. See reference.
The reason I listed all of the muscles indicates your need to be extremely specific. You want to look at an anatomy book and to the best of your ability treat each and every muscle you see. If you treat fractional inches at a time from the finger tips to the elbow joint, and then from the elbow to the shoulder, slowly along the bone, you won't miss anything. But if you always do an effleurage type of stroke you will miss something. Therapy should be about being specific, not generalized. The hand should not only feel better, but should also have better function. Recheck your range of motion and muscle tests to show the client how much improvement your treatment has made. I mentioned above all the tools I used besides my hands and every few minutes during the session I will trade out and use those tools so I save my own career.
Treatment Tip: I generally follow the thought of contrast first, myofascial second, specific work next, then PNF stretching and repeat. So far, 25 years and still going strong!
So, how is this client doing today? He is doing great and I continue to see him once a week. He has since been able to go back to more intricate work because his body isn't fighting him with pain anymore.
Fun Ring Finger Trivia
Before medical science discovered how the circulatory system functioned, people believed that a vein of blood ran directly from the third finger on the left hand to the heart. Because of the hand-heart connection, they chose the descriptive name vena amoris, Latin name meaning, literally vein of love. Based upon this name, their contemporaries, purported experts in the field of matrimonial etiquette, wrote that it would only be fitting that the wedding ring be worn on this finger.
Click here for more information about Debbie Roberts, LMT.
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