At Riverdale Sports Physical Therapy, our expert therapists treat various diagnoses on a regular basis. Each patient receives his/her own unique therapy plan specific to his/her individual diagnosis. The following are some of the more common diagnoses we treat:
Arthritis is a disease of the joint and is usually identified by the presence of inflammation of the joint. A joint is where the ends of two or more bones meet. A smooth tissue of cartilage covers the ends of bones in a joint. Cartilage cushions the bone and allows the joint to move easily without the friction that would come with bone-on-bone contact. A joint is enclosed by a fibrous envelope, called the synovium, which produces a fluid that also helps to reduce friction and wear in a joint. Ligaments connect the bones and keep the joint stable. Muscles and tendons power the joint and enable it to move. In some forms of arthritis, such as osteoarthritis, the inflammation of the joint arises because the smooth tissue covering (articular cartilage) on the ends of bones becomes damaged or worn. This can be the result of the natural aging process, constant use or through trauma. In other forms of arthritis, such as rheumatoid arthritis, the joint lining becomes inflamed as part of a disease process that affects the entire body. Regardless of whether the cause is from injury, normal wear and tear, or disease, the joint becomes swollen, painful and stiff which can cause long-lasting or permanent disability.
Bursitis is the irritation and inflammation of the bursa. Bursae are small, jelly-like sacs that are located throughout the body, including around the shoulder, elbow, hip, knee, and ankle. They are filled with fluid, and are positioned between bones, and soft tissues, acting as cushions to help reduce friction with movement. Repeated small stresses and overuse can cause the bursa in the shoulder, elbow, hip, knee, or ankle to produce too much fluid and swell. This swelling and irritation is called bursitis.
This type of arthritis can be referred to as the “wear and tear” arthritis and is a progressive disease of the joints. With osteoarthritis, the articular cartilage that covers the ends of bones in the joints gradually wears away. The smooth articular cartilage that allows the bones to move easily against each other becomes frayed and rough on the surface. Joint motion along this exposed surface is painful. Osteoarthritis develops after many years of wear and tear and usually affects the weight-bearing joints, such as the hip and knee. It affects people who are middle-aged or older. Some risk factors for osteoarthritis include obesity, previous injury to the affected joint, and a family history of osteoarthritis. Osteoarthritis can affect any joint in the body, with symptoms ranging from mild to disabling. A joint affected by osteoarthritis may be painful and inflamed. The joint may stiffen and look swollen, enlarged or out of place. A bump may develop over the joint. If bending the joint becomes difficult, motion may be limited. The joint may lock, creak, click, snap, or make a grinding noise (crepitus) with movement. Although osteoarthritis cannot be cured, early identification and treatment can slow progression of the disease, relieve pain and restore function.
Osteoporosis is a major health problem, affecting more than 44 million Americans and contributing to an estimated two million bone fractures per year. Osteoporosis is a disease of progressive bone loss associated with an increased risk of fractures. The term osteoporosis literally means porous bone. The disease often develops unnoticed over many years, with no symptoms or discomfort until a fracture occurs. Possible causes of osteoporosis include the natural aging process, heredity, nutrition and lifestyle, and medications or other illnesses.
• Aging: Everyone loses bone with age. After 35 years of age, the body builds less new bone to replace the loss of old bone. In general, the older you are, the lower your total bone mass and the greater your risk for osteoporosis.
• Heredity: A family history of fractures; a small, slender body build; fair skin; and Caucasian or Asian ethnicity can increase the risk for osteoporosis. Heredity may also help explain why some people develop osteoporosis early in life.
• Nutrition and Lifestyle: Poor nutrition, including a low calcium diet, low body weight, and a sedentary lifestyle have been linked to osteoporosis, as have smoking and excessive alcohol use.
• Medications and Other Illnesses: Osteoporosis has been linked to the use of some medications, including steroids, and to other illnesses, including some thyroid problems.
A strain is an injury of a muscle and/or tendon. Tendons are fibrous cords of tissue that
attach muscles to bone.
Tendonitis is the inflammation of a tendon or tendon covering. Inflammation is our body’s natural healing response to injury. It is usually accompanied by swelling, heat, redness, and pain. Tendonitis is caused by a series of small stresses that repeatedly irritate the tendon. Professional baseball players, swimmers, tennis players, and golfers are susceptible to tendonitis in their shoulders and arms. Soccer and basketball players, runners, and aerobic dancers are prone to tendon inflammation in their legs and feet.