Acupuncture, Sports Medicine and Orthopaedics
Friday, January 30, 2015 at 2:05PM
Dr. Martin Dziak in Medical Acupuncture, Physiotherapy, acupuncture, orthopaedics, sports medicine

Sports medicine is a broad and complex branch of health care that involves several disciplines.  Essentially, sports medicine applies western medical and scientific knowledge to prevent, recognize, assess, manage and rehabilitate injuries related to sport, exercise or recreational activity. Sports medicine is targeted not only to the professional athlete but the person with an athletic or active lifestyle to enhance health, fitness and performance.

Sports medicine is used by a variety of health care professionals and is practiced in a number of venues with overlapping but distinct areas of expertise. This includes athletic trainers, acupuncturists, massage therapists, podiatrists, dieticians, psychologists, exercise physiologists, surgeons, physiotherapists, chiropractors and several other specialties. Each health care discipline practicing under the umbrella of sports medicine has the same goal of rehabilitating the injured athlete back to full participation and function. Athletes, young or old, professional or recreational, are those individuals that use regular exercise to obtain health.  This extends to physical activities that aren’t exactly sports, such as dancing or occupational activities that may lead to injury.

Sports Medicine Acupuncture incorporates both acupuncture philosophies and Sports Medicine diagnostic techniques in order to provide the athlete with optimal healing results within efficient time-lines.  With both the professional and recreational athlete, the goal is to accurately assess the mechanism and severity of the patient’s musculoskeletal complaint. This is accomplished by using a combination of orthopaedic special tests, range of motion, manual muscle testing and palpation to identify the injured tissue. Getting the athlete back to their desired activity, enhancing performance and preventing re-injury through treatment and education is the goal.

Acupuncture is an excellent complement to physical rehabilitation for athletic and other orthopaedic injuries. Acupuncture can help improve physical performance, ease the effects of overtraining, and prevent future injuries. It has been proven to decrease pain and inflammation, as well as promote circulation to the affected tissues. This optimizes healing by bringing in the necessary nutrients and removing metabolic wastes. Athletes and those who are physically active understand how critically important it is to maintain balance in the body; once balance is disrupted, tissue breakdown and injury occur. Acupuncture can play an integral role in maintaining this balance.

At Target, we employ an anatomically based method when using acupuncture to treat sports and orthopaedic injuries. In addition to the classical acupuncture points, we commonly use trigger points, motor points, and points along the spine that impact the nerves of the injured tissues and create dramatic results. Gentle electrical currents are often also added to the acupuncture needles to optimize effects.  This is referred to as electro-acupuncture or intra-muscular stimulation.  Oftentimes, one of the primary goals is to simply reset the portion of the nervous system which determines the tension level of the affected soft tissues. Once this tension level has been corrected, a cascade of positive results takes place. Bony alignment corrections can be maintained, postural corrections are more easily attained, and abnormal stresses and pulls on other muscles, tendons, joints, and ligaments ease.

Thorough musculoskeletal examination, including assessment of joint accessory mobility and palpation of the involved musculature creates a foundation not only for treating the pain, but also addressing the source of the dysfunction. Without this type of exam, much time and money can be wasted by “chasing symptoms.”  Patients who receive acupuncture at Target Therapeutics would rarely receive this treatment in isolation.  We practice an integrated approach that takes advantage of a variety of orthopaedic manual techniques (mobilization, manipulation, spinal decompression, muscle energy, isolytic assisted stretching, active release therapy, taping techniques, exercise prescription, deep soft tissue techniques) to optimize patient progress and accelerates recovery.  

At Target Therapeutics, we successfully treat numerous sports and orthopaedic injuries using this integrative treatment model.

Injuries we successfully treat include, but are not limited to:
• neck, mid back, and lower back pain
• spinal disc protrusions/bulges
• sciatica
• headaches and migraines
• temporomandibular joint (TMJ) dysfunction
• shoulder pain and bursitis
• rotator cuff tears and repairs
• shoulder impingement syndrome
• frozen shoulder (adhesive capsulitis)
• tennis elbow/lateral epicondylitis
• golfer’s elbow/medial epicondylitis
• carpal tunnel syndrome
• rib subluxations
• hip pain and bursitis
• sacroiliac joint sprains
• iliotibial band (ITB) syndrome
• meniscal tears
• patellar tendonitis
• patellofemoral joint dysfunction
• hamstring and calf strains and tears
• achilles tendonitis
• tendon ruptures/post operative tendon repairs
• ankle sprains
• plantar fasciitis
• osteoarthritis/degenerative joint disease

Incorporating acupuncture into the treatment of these injuries is something we enjoy doing, because it works so well.

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