Tuesday, May 21, 2019

Common spine problems in elderly people

Aging is a natural process whose effects will be felt by anyone, regardless of lifestyle. Proper diet and exercise can slow down the effects of aging, but only to a certain extent.
Image source: health.harvard.edu

Spinal conditions are often associated with the aging process. According to Dr. Joseph Yazdi, a spine specialist, spinal conditions in elderly people are common and can turn severe if left unchecked or untreated. Here are some of the most common spinal problems found in elderly people.

Osteoporosis

More common in women than men, osteoporosis is the result of decreasing bone mass. The lack of mass from protein and minerals like calcium can leave the bones brittle and prone to fracture. In most cases, the chance of acquiring osteoporosis can be reduced by improving protein and calcium intake early.

Image source: spineuniverse.com
Spinal fractures and hyperkyphosis 

Spinal fractures are a common type of osteoporotic fracture which can sometimes mimic the symptoms of other diseases. Meanwhile, hyperkyphosis are posture conditions brought about by spinal fractures. People who suffer from hyperkyphosis and spinal fractures often experience a nagging back pain significantly affecting comfort levels.

Disc degeneration

The structural strength and integrity of the spine diminishes as we age. This has a corresponding effect on discs, bones, ligaments, joints, and nerves. When this happens, certain parts of the spinal column could be misaligned, resulting in pressure exerted on the nerves and subsequently, pain. While Dr. Joseph Yazdi could propose certain non-surgical treatments for pain relief, the degraded state of the spinal column has only limited healing capacity and could require particular treatment plans.

Dr. Joseph Yazdi specializes in minimally invasive surgical techniques, motion preservation through total disc replacement, and chronic pain management through placement of dorsal column stimulator (DCS, or SCS) in selected patients. Over the years, he has also published several studies on neurosurgical best practice. For more information on spinal health, visit this website.

Monday, April 15, 2019

The curious connection between the spine and knee

Image source: rechargesportsinjury.com
Dr. Joseph Yazdi has seen enough patients with spinal problems to know that when the spine is affected, there is a huge possibility that other parts of the body are as well. He notes that in professional sports, many team physicians and physical therapists often consult with spinal surgeons, especially if chronic pain emerges without injury.


One body part, in particular, has a curious connection with back pain – the knee. Spine specialists often mention how the nerves of the muscles surrounding a person’s knees can be found in a person’s back. This is why it’s not impossible for malfunctioning knees to be caused by problems originating in the back, specifically the spine.

Image source: medicalnewstoday.com
Dr. Joseph Yazdi also mentions low-level nerve irritation, which can affect how the muscles around the knees work, creating a dangerous series of movements for the all-important joint in the area. He also believes that there can be perhaps a simpler diagnosis – referred pain. After all, it has been observed in the past that pinched nerves from bulging lumbar discs can send signals of pain all the way down the nerve, ending in the knee.

For these reasons, Dr. Yazdi always recommends people experiencing back discomfort to see a specialist immediately. What may seem like ordinary back issues may be a prelude to pain in the knees, pain that may hinder a person’s mobility.

Dr. Joseph Yazdi specializes in minimally invasive surgical techniques, motion preservation through total disc replacement, and chronic pain management by placement of dorsal column stimulator (DCS, or SCS) in selected patients. Over the years, he has also published several studies on neurosurgical best practice. For more insightful reads on spine health, visit this page.

Tuesday, January 22, 2019

Health and treatment: How to treat a slipped disc

 A slipped disc or a herniated disc can develop over time as a function of aging. This occurs when the spinal disc loses water, becomes brittle, and is displaced. When this happens, the nerves within the spinal column are subjected to significant amounts of pressure, creating sensations like pain, numbness, and muscle weakness. Here are some ways to treat a slipped disc:


Conservative treatment is a standard treatment which includes avoiding positions which put stress on the affected area. This is coupled with proper medication and exercise regimens that last anywhere from several days to weeks.

Several types of medication are prescribed depending on the severity of the patient’s condition. Over-the-counter pain medication is usually prescribed for people experiencing mild pain. However, if the pain persists, stronger narcotics may be prescribed. Do take note that such medications could come with side effects such as sedation, nausea, constipation, and confusion.

In rare occasions, anticonvulsants are prescribed for people who may suffer seizures during their treatment. This is to make sure that the slipped disc isn’t subjected to further stress. For patients experiencing muscle spasms, muscle relaxers are usually prescribed.

Physical therapy is another treatment patients seek when medication fails to improve their condition. This treatment shows patients proper positions and exercises that can minimize the pain of a slipped disc.

Lastly, there’s the surgical option. It is very rare for patients who suffer from slipped disc to undergo surgery. Those who do usually treat this method as a last resort. People undergo surgery if there is already a big risk of paralysis or nerve damage.

Dr. Joseph Yazdi specializes in minimally invasive surgical techniques, motion preservation through total disc replacement, and chronic pain management by placement of dorsal column stimulator (DCS, or SCS)in selected patients. Over the years, he has also published several studies on neurosurgical best practice. For more updates on spine health, follow this Twitter account.

Thursday, January 17, 2019

Ways to alleviate chronic back pain

webmd.com
Chronic back pain is a debilitating ailment that heavily affects daily activities. According to the American Chiropractic Association, chronic back pain is responsible for 264 million lost work days in a year, and that 80 percent of the population suffers from back pain at least once in their lives. Here are some effective ways to alleviate chronic back pain.


Take prescribed pain killers from your doctor. While it’s easy to grab generic pain killers from the pharmacy, it is always better to consult your doctor about proper back pain medication. Once your doctor has examined your spine and the possible causes of chronic pain, he or she will prescribe medication to ease the pain.

Physical therapy. Consulting a physical therapist will educate you on proper posture and keeping your spine in proper shape to lessen back pain. Therapists will teach you how to sit, stand, and move in ways that will nurture the spine and spare it from stress. Physical therapy also helps patients strengthen the core and improve flexibility, two of the main bodily functions easing back pain.

webmd.com
Constantly stretch and consider workspace ergonomics. Avoid sitting slumped on your desk, especially if you are working for long stretches of hours daily. Most people bend forward while working, which can cause serious back ailments. If you can, walk around and stretch every hour for an improved blood circulation and invest in a working chair that will keep your spine comfortable.

Dr. Joseph Yazdi specializes in minimally invasive surgical techniques, motion preservation through total disc replacement, and chronic pain management by placement of dorsal column stimulator (DCS, or SCS) in selected patients. For more articles like this, visit this page.

Wednesday, July 12, 2017

Valuing Spine Health In The Workplace

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People who spend most of their time sitting and staring at the computer are not excused from non-accidental back injuries. Long hours spent slouching in the office chair may eventually take its toll on the body. It is most likely that office chairs are not the best and comfiest to work in from morning until afternoon. Breaks are too short to take long walks to relax the back muscles.

Below are two ways to take care of your spine health in the workplace.

Keep moving

Prolonged static posture is what gets everyone in the office at risk of non-accidental back injuries. Identifying this as the main problem suggests that standing up and stretching from time to time may prevent it from happening. A body that is healthy can only stay in the same position for 20 minutes. Being static for more than 20 minutes is the enemy. Moving the arms and legs even when seated may bring comfort as well.

When standing, avoid slouching. A good standing posture is when a person maintains the natural curve of the spine. Tightening the core muscles and keeping the head directly over the shoulders are just some guidelines how to keep a healthy posture. Maintain this even when walking.

Image source: ergonomicsguru.com
Sit comfortably

An office chair that mirrors the natural curve of the spine and keeps one sitting straight is an ergonomic office chair. Placing the feet flat to the ground and maintaining the 90-degree angle position of the knees, hips, and elbows is the proper sitting position. Keeping the head in neutral position provides a better view and reach of one’s desk and prevents possible neck problems.
Workplaces must be made safe and comfortable for employees and employers alike. Ergonomic offices keep workers inspired and healthy.

Dr. Joseph Yazdi is an accomplished neurosurgeon who specializes in minimally invasive surgical techniques, motion preservation through total disc replacement, and chronic pain management by placement of dorsal column stimulator (DCS, or SCS) in selected patients. Dr. Yazdi holds clinic at Tesson Heights Orthopaedic & Arthroscopic Associates, P.C. For similar updates, subscribe to this







Monday, June 12, 2017

How Can Osteoporosis Affect The Spine?

Osteoporosis has been, for the past years, a large cause for concern in the medical industry as it has afflicted over 44 million Americans. The term literally translates as “porous bones,” and it is a degenerative condition characterized by some bones’ loss of density and strength. The subsequent weakness leads to increased risks of breaks and fractures.


Image source: hip-knee.com

The medical condition can cause degeneration in any bones in the body, including arms, legs, hips, and more. But the most common part of the body that osteoporosis affects is the vertebrae of the spine.

Unfortunately, osteoporosis is also called the “silent thief” because it develops and progresses without any evident symptoms or causing any pain. When it targets the spine, the vertebrae slowly weakens and can eventually cause vertebral compression fracture, where some of the bones crack, collapse, or flatten. These can result in a loss of height and a curvature of the spine, which, in some extreme cases, can disrupt the function of internal organs.



Image source: youtube.com

It is important to note that the damages in the human body caused by osteoporosis cannot be reversed. Thus, there should be a proactive effort in the care of the spine to prevent the onset of osteoporosis.

Neurosurgeon Dr. Joseph Yazdi specializes in the management of chronic spine pain. He currently holds practice at Tesson Heights Orthopaedic & Arthroscopic Associates, P.C. Learn more about his work by following this Twitter account.



Tuesday, May 30, 2017

Weight and back pain: Knowing the connection

It is already common knowledge that being overweight or obese can cause high blood pressure, diabetes, stroke, and various cardiovascular ailments. What people do not know much about is that excess weight is also linked to back pain. According to the American Obesity Association, around a third of people who are classified as obese have experienced some form of pain in the back, particularly the lower part. 

Image source: aaronchiro.com

Some of the connection between having extra weight and back pain are the following: 

Muscle and ligament strain 

Every kilogram above what is considered healthy weight contributes to the straining of muscles and ligaments located at the back. Not only does this cause musculoskeletal and joint-related pain, but it also causes the spine to become tilted and stressed unevenly, leading to the loss of support in the spine and an unnatural curvature of the spinal column. 

Herniated disc Because there is too much pressure on the back due to excess weight, the discs and other spinal structures become damaged, resulting in a herniated disc. Similarly, pinched nerves and piriformis syndrome is also a possibility when the excess weight is pushed into the spaces between bones at the lower back. 

Osteoarthritis Based on studies, individuals who have a Body Mass Index (BMI) of more than 25 are more prone to suffering from osteoarthritis, or the wear and tear of joints. This can cause pain and stiffness, which limits the patient’s ability to function properly. 

Image source: health.com

Joseph Yazdi, M.D., specializes in treating chronic spine pain with expertise in minimally invasive surgical techniques, motion preservation through total disc replacement, and placement of dorsal column stimulator for chronic pain management. Click here for more articles about this medical field.