- Knee Pain
The knee is one of the easiest joints to examine in detail, even minor swelling in the joint is easily detected. Our team at the Physiotherapy Clinic Gosling have the experience and skills to assess and precisely diagnose the problem.
There are a vast number of causes for knee pain, to find out more about the possible causes please browse the informative NHS guide to knee pain. Sheering movements or contact injuries often involve the ligaments or cartilages in the knee. If you have joint swelling, particularly if it comes up very quickly then seek advice. Limit your activities and initiate a RICE regime. It is important to regain fitness after injury, rest helps but continued limitation of movement will lead to weakness and stiffness.
If you are experiencing pain in the front of the knee then, apart from direct trauma, the cause of these symptoms can often be due to a muscle imbalance and sometimes arthritis.
Tightness in the calf and thigh muscles, and weakness in the muscle that controls the knee cap’s (patella’s) position in its groove will stress the knee. Abnormal loading leads to a breakdown and pain.
Your physio will help you to reduce your pain while helping you work through appropriate exercises to progress to full activity.
If it’s an arthritic joint which is causing problems, then so much can be done to settle the pain down, without the need for radical solutions. Firstly, reduce stress – stop or limit activities that excessively aggravate symptoms, as cartilage is weaker to compression stresses.
Research supports the use of electroacupuncture and exercise especially in a hydrotherapy environment, speak to us to find out how we can help you.
- Ankle Sprain
The most common type of ankle sprain occurs when the foot rolls over on the outside. This can occur during sporting activities or even from simply stepping down from the kerb.
The ligaments on the outside are affected however in some situations it may cause counter bruising on the inner side of your ankle. Depending on the severity of the sprain the ligaments can either be over stretched or torn. The degree of swelling, bruising and pain is a good indication of the degree of injury and simple ligament tests performed by the physiotherapist will confirm the likely outcome.
A simple sprain may settle within a few weeks and with external support through taping, you may be able to return to training very quickly. Unfortunately, a tear will be more painful and could take longer to heal.
When you return to sport you will need, to regain your fitness, to incorporate treatment for pain relief and progressive strength and proprioceptive training. Our expert physiotherapists will help you through the acute stages and show you what exercises can be done to return to full function.
- Achilles Tendonitis
If you are experiencing pain and swelling in your Achilles (particularly after exercise) or stiffness in your calf and Achilles first thing in the morning, then you could be suffering from Achilles Tendonopathy. This can be a traumatic injury or one that gradually occurs through overuse or increased training, for mid/long distance runners this can be a common condition.
Current research shows the best approaches to treatment are:
- Bio mechanical correction including correction of sporting technique
- Calf and Achilles release and stretching
- Progressive Achilles strengthening using eccentric loading
- Acupuncture for pain relief
- Kinesiology taping
- Running Injuries
It always seems to happen that just as you are building up mileage for a race you are hit with an injury.
If you are a runner, the link between training quantity and injury means the total mileage is an excellent indicator of your injury risk. The more miles you accrue per week, the higher the chance of injury. One recent investigation found a marked upswing in injury risk for runners who ran above 40 miles per week.
Fatigued muscles do a poor job of protecting their associated connective tissue, increasing the risk of damage to bone, cartilage, tendons and ligaments.
As you pile on the mileage or introduce new strategies such as interval training, you may find that your muscles are just not ready to do the job.
Screening for muscle imbalances is a cutting-edge injury prevention service. At the Physiotherapy Clinic, when you visit us with an unexplained niggle, we will be able to perform tests and screen you to ascertain what are the contributory factors. Along with relieving the pain originating from the joint, muscle, nerve or tendon, we can create a tailor-made programme for you that will help get you back on track and limit further breakdowns.
We also carry out video gait analysis based on the work of Balk and Romanov to help prevent further injury.
- Trapped Nerves
Sciatica is the term used to describe the pain experienced down the back of the leg from a trapped nerve. There may not be any associated back pain however some sciatica sufferers find themselves “pole-axed” and unable to get comfortable when lying down.
When the pain is particularly severe and radiating below the knee it is always valuable to notify your GP who can start the recovery process with effective analgesia medication. Sciatica is a condition we commonly see at the clinic and, as with treating Back Pain, responds very well to physiotherapy treatment.
If you are in pain we would recommend you to:
- Limit the activities that aggravate the condition, you may have to cancel things in your diary
- During the initial period over 24- 48 hours try and switch the pain off by finding positions you are comfortable in
- Placing a pillow between the knees when laying on your side can ease the leg pain
- Contact The Physiotherapy Clinic for advice
- Hip Bursitis
To be able to treat the pain effectively it is essential that the cause of the pain is identified, as direct treatment to the bursa alone will not help you.
Pain over the hip joint to the side spreading backwards often represents some sort of weakness in the posterior gluteal (buttock) muscles, it is the lack of muscular stability that puts a strain on the hip joint and even the lumbar spine causing considerable discomfort; often keeping you awake at night.
Alongside many sports injuries, it is the movement analysis and critical examination that will bring about an effective solution. Expect pain relieving techniques and taping combined with strengthening exercises for a happy outcome.
- Muscle Tears
If you are experiencing persistent cramp type pain or niggles in a muscle then this could indicate a minor tear rather than simple muscle soreness. Following heavy exercise muscle soreness will settle however with a tear the discomfort will persist and worsen if you continue to exercise.
Muscle tears can be graded by severity. A pain that pulls you up sharply and makes it impossible to continue is likely to be more severe involving the tearing of several bands of muscle fibres. These, more severe, tears take longer to heal and therefore create more time to decondition and develop adaptive changes both to the muscle itself and neighbouring structures.
A physio will be able to assess the degree of injury which will enable them to both treat and advise you on the necessary progression back to full fitness. As with a simple injury early reduction in load and activities combined with the RICE approach(link to RICE page), will help to manage the pain.
Getting back into exercise and a progression of loading can start as soon as the pain settles but with more severe painful injuries this may need to wait until 5 to 10 days after injury.
Your physio can treat you straight away and by grading the level of activity specifically, you will make a quicker recovery.
What will your physio do?
- Assess the degree of injury
- Alleviate pain through physiotherapy techniques such as electro acupuncture, ultrasound, manual hands on treatment and kinesio taping
- Start you on a level of activity suitable to your current level of recovery
- Advise you on when and how to stretch - to help promote good healing within the damaged muscle fibres
- Progress you through with a bespoke exercise programme through the various stages of recovery.
- Liaise with coaching staff or your GP.
If indications dictate a very severe problem, your physio will refer you to the most appropriate local consultant to scan and assess the degree of damage.
Arthritis and Osteoarthritis aren’t conditions that you should fear, because in the right hands they can be managed and you can maintain an active life. A recent article published by the British Medical Journal found that exercise is an effective way to control pain and improve function – especially with lower-limb arthritis.
Our team of physios treat this condition daily, so where ever it affects you in the body we are able to treat the pain, advise you whether it’s best to rest or whether you are ready to exercise.
We will assess and supply joint supports where it is beneficial. If you need any advice,e then please do not hesitate to give us a ring.
There is plenty to read about this condition on the internet, a very good reference is arthritisresearchuk.org
- Plantar Fascitis
This condition affects those of us with tightness through the posterior calf and often fallen arches in the feet. The plantar fascia is a broad band of fascia which connects the heel bone to the metacarpal bones and is subjected to increased stress if there is tightness through the calf.
Although there are incidents of rupture which require a more radical approach and medical attention, it is the over use cases that plague most of its victims.
Heel pain which is significantly worse when initially walking after periods of rest is characteristic.
Pain relief from the physiotherapist combined with taping and a progressive strengthening and stretching regime bring about resolution. As it is an overuse injury, relative rest from the aggravating activity.