Hip-Spine Syndrome: It’s Complicated (and Often Overlooked)

Posted by Brigham and Women's Hospital November 18, 2016

A patient with hip arthritis may experience hip or groin pain as well as trouble walking, while a patient with lumbar spinal stenosis may have pain down their leg, or neurologic symptoms such as numbness, tingling or weakness.

3d rendered illustration of a man having backache

Hip-spine syndrome is a condition where both hip and spine problems are occurring in tandem.

“Hip-spine syndrome is a distinct syndrome where both hip and spinal problems are occurring together,” said James D. Kang, MD, Chairman of the Department of Orthopaedic Surgery at Brigham and Women’s Hospital (BWH).

And yet, because hip and spine disorders have overlapping presentations and symptoms, it can often be challenging for physicians to determine if a patient’s symptoms originate from the hip, spine or both. This can delay diagnosis and treatment, and many patients with hip-spine syndrome have seen several physicians and therapists, or may have undergone various procedures that did not relieve their pain. Read More »

Finding Relief from Pain

Posted by Brigham and Women's Hospital September 6, 2016

Among the many reasons why patients go to see a doctor, pain is often a primary complaint. Whether it is acute or chronic, pain can be debilitating. In recognition of Pain Awareness Month, we have compiled some of our blog posts featuring ways to address pain.

 

PainInnovations in Chronic Pain Management

Treating chronic pain often requires different approaches than those used for acute pain. In this post, Dr. Edgar L. Ross, Director of the Brigham and Women’s Hospital Pain Management Center, talks about the importance of playing an active role in your treatment plan and the benefits of having a multidisciplinary, collaborative care team that specializes in pain management.

 

 

 

Senior African descent woman grabs lower back in painTips on Managing Back Pain

Managing back pain can be challenging because it is often non-specific and may be the result of many different conditions. In this post, Dr. Jason Yong, an anesthesiologist and pain management specialist in the Comprehensive Spine Center at Brigham and Women’s Hospital (BWH), offers some guidance for people suffering from back pain.

 

 

 

Hip painYoung and Active? Don’t Ignore Hip Pain.

 Many young and active adults who experience hip pain during exercise attribute the discomfort to overdoing it during a workout. In this post, Dr. Scott Martin, an orthopedic specialist at Brigham and Women’s Hospital, explains why it is important to be evaluated for a condition called femoroacetabular impingement if you are young and experiencing repeat hip pain, stiffness, or a catching sensation in the hip during movement.

 

 

gel pack on kneeTreating Injury and Pain: Ice or Heat?

Often when someone gets injured or feels pain, they wonder whether to treat it with cold or heat. This post by Dr. Elizabeth Matzkin, Surgical Director of the Women’s Sports Medicine Program at Brigham and Women’s Hospital, offers a few simple guidelines to help you determine which approach to take.

 

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Tips on Managing Back Pain

Posted by Brigham and Women's Hospital June 2, 2016

Back pain is one of the most common reasons why people seek medical help.

Managing back pain can be challenging, because it is often non-specific and may be the result of many different conditions. In this post, Dr. Jason Yong, an anesthesiologist and pain management specialist in the Comprehensive Spine Center at Brigham and Women’s Hospital (BWH), offers some guidance for people suffering from back pain.

Seeking Treatment

Not all back pain requires treatment from a physician. Patients with acute low back pain (lasting less than three weeks), for example, can often get sufficient relief by using over-the-counter anti-inflammatory pain medications, physical therapy exercises, and temporary restrictions on lifting while the body heals itself. Generally, treatment by a physician is advised when pain is limiting a patient’s ability to walk, sit, or stand for prolonged periods of time, or if pain is greater than a 6 (on a scale from 0 to 10). Spinal surgery is usually considered for patients with intense, unrelenting pain (10 on a scale from 0 to 10), weakness, incontinence, or structural instability.

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Let It Snow – Tips for Shoveling Safely

Posted by Brigham and Women's Hospital January 27, 2015

Snow shoveling requires good technique and proper body mechanics to be performed safely.

Today’s medical information comes from Nicole Durand PT, DPT, a physical therapist working for the Brigham and Women’s Hospital Rehabilitation Department at Brigham and Women’s/Mass General Health Care Center in Foxborough, MA.

Many people have been prepping for the winter weeks ahead by making sure they have all the necessary supplies for snow and ice removal. However, whether it’s 2-3 inches or 6-10 inches of snow, we shouldn’t only be concerned about what to purchase, but also how we can protect ourselves. Snow shoveling requires good technique and proper body mechanics to be performed safely and not cause lasting harm. Improper technique can lead to low back or shoulder injuries.

There are several muscle groups at work within the back, legs, and shoulder when shoveling, and therefore, lots of room for error. Here are some helpful hints to avoid injury and to prevent any unwanted pain in the days following a storm:

1.   Hinge your hips

When bending to pick up the snow, think of your hips as a hinge. Bend and move through this joint, keeping your back flat, rather than curving your mid or lower back. You also should use your abdominals as a brace or corset to stabilize yourself every time you bend over.

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Comprehensive Spine Care: Surgical and Non-Surgical Treatment

Posted by Brigham and Women's Hospital May 6, 2014

Treating back pain can be very challenging, requiring the expertise and coordination of more than one medical specialty.

Certain spinal conditions, such as back pain, are very common. However, treating these conditions can be very challenging, requiring the expertise and coordination of more than one medical specialty, including physical medicine, pain management, and surgery.

“Back pain is a very common complaint, but a very non-specific complaint. Back pain and leg pain can be caused by many different things, including spinal stenosis, disk herniations, and instability. The procedures that we offer are really tailored to the specific patient with a specific disorder, based on imaging and exam,” says orthopedic surgeon Dr. Chrisotopher Bono, Co-Director, Brigham and Women’s Comprehensive Spine Center.

To ensure the correct diagnosis and treatment for spinal disorders, patients who are referred to the Brigham and Women’s Comprehensive Spine Center are evaluated with state-of-the-art diagnostic procedures and imaging. Often, the first step is conservative, non-operative treatment by physiatrists, pain management physicians, and other specialists.

Read More »

It’s a Wrap – Top Blog Posts in 2013

Posted by Brigham and Women's Hospital December 30, 2013

The blog team at Brigham and Women’s Hospital (BWH) is wrapping up 2013 with a selection of our most popular posts.  We’d also love to hear from you – what blog topics would you like to see in 2014?

We wish you a safe, happy New Year and thank you for your support.

 

Face Transplant Recipient Focuses on Her Gifts

Carmen Tarleton, got a new start on life when she became the fifth BWH patient to receive a face transplant. A team of more than 30 physicians, nurses, anesthesiologists and others worked for 15 hours to complete the surgery. Carmen’s story demonstrates how the generosity of neighbors, friends, and strangers can restore hope and healing.

 

Morning Heart Attacks: Blame It on Your Body Clock

Have you ever wondered why most heart attacks occur in the morning?  According to recent research from Brigham and Women’s Hospital and Oregon Health & Science University, you can probably place some of the blame on your body clock which drives day/night variations in a protein known to be a risk factor for heart attacks and ischemic strokes.

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Navigating Treatment Options for Back Pain

Posted by Brigham and Women's Hospital July 1, 2013

Matthew Kowalski, DC, a chiropractor at the Osher Center, provides non-surgical care for patients with back pain.

Today’s blog post is written by Dr. Donald B. Levy, Medical Director of the Osher Center for Integrative Medicine at Brigham and Women’s Hospital and Matthew H. Kowalski, DC, a chiropractor at the Osher Center.

You have many choices when seeking options for treatment of low back pain; however, many people become overwhelmed trying to identify the most appropriate health care provider. So when should you seek treatment for low back pain and who should you see?  This post discusses how to navigate the health care system to get proper care if you are suffering from back pain.

Getting Started

Not all back pain actually requires treatment. Consider a dose of self-care as your first treatment choice. Often, a combination of patience, over-the-counter medications, ice and/or heat, avoidance of injurious activities, and remaining active will relieve uncomplicated low back pain. (Uncomplicated low back pain is an episode of pain without other health concerns or “red flags.”)

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Spine Surgery — When Is It Right for You?

Posted by Blog Administrator May 16, 2012

 

spine specialist with patient

Dr. Bono (right) and his spine surgeon team strive to ease back pain with the least amount of surgery possible.

Dr. Christopher Bono, Chief of the Department of Orthopedic Surgery’s Spine Service, has a habit of talking patients out of spine surgery. It’s not that he doesn’t want to help you – quite the contrary.

Spine surgeons in Dr. Bono’s practice end up performing surgery on less than 25 percent of the more than 800 patients that they see each year. Dr. Bono is proud of that low rate, as his team’s goal, as ironic as it may seem, is to perform the least amount of surgery possible. His rationales for this objective are that spine surgery, even in the hands of its best surgeons, is a very risky proposition, and the vast majority of patients with back pain can be treated effectively without surgery.

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