Functional Capacity Evaluation is an assessment of patient's daily activities that might have brought on the condition, and a review of how activities can be performed without putting stress on a patient's neck and low back.
Postural Rehabilitation begins with an assessment to determine if current posture is causing undo stress on the spine, or if there is problem with alignment that may be caused by another issue in the body. If an imbalance or asymmetry is discovered, the doctor will then consider appropriate therapies and prescribe exercises to improve posture.
EMS (Electrical Muscle Stimulation) is a physical therapy modality wherein a mild electrical current is applied to particular muscles causing quick contractions. These contractions stimulate muscle motor nerves at a high enough intensity to effect muscles at a deep level, fatiguing the muscles and allowing them to relax. The contractions also cause the body to release endorphins, the body's natural pain killers, which help reduce pain in the area.
Not to be confused with a simple TENS Unit, which only stimulates superficial sensory nerve endings to help decrease pain, EMS has a much broader range of benefits. A few of the most common benefits are: reducing inflammation and swelling, eliminating muscle spasm, increasing the range of motion in a joint, preventing muscle disuse atrophy, increasing local circulation, and improving muscle function. EMS also allows the spinal adjustment to be performed much more comfortably and for superior hold of the adjustment.
During EMS, the patient will feel a mild tingling sensation, which most find very soothing.
Interferential/ Russian Muscle Stimulation is similar to EMS but provides deeper muscle penetration and a more complete contraction of the muscle fibers. Depending upon the parameters selected, Interferential can stimulate local nerve cells resulting in pain reduction. Stimulation achieves this by blocking the transmission of pain signals and releasing endorphins.
Therapeutic Ultrasound is a method of stimulating the tissues beneath the skin's surface using a very high frequency of sound waves. Ultrasound speeds up the healing process by increasing blood flow to the area and massages muscle tendons and ligaments without straining them. It is also used for pain reduction, swelling, edema, and can soften any scar tissue that may be present.
Ultrasound is applied using a transducer gel conductor or hydrocortisone.
Therapeutic Exercise improves joint function and range of motion to the spine, loosens tight muscles, and promotes circulation to enhance soft tissue healing. Therapeutic Exercise can range from assisted exercises involving direct patient contact, to exercise education and prescription for the patient to continue treatment outside of the office. Dr. Genza utilizes Theraballs and Therabands alongside traditional methods.
Trigger Point Massage consists of identifying trigger points through touch followed by manual compression in cycles of isolated pressure and release. Trigger points are tight, irritable areas in the muscles that refer pain to other areas when pressure is applied. Trigger points are caused by stress- either habitual stress, or the stress of physical or emotional trauma. The result of trigger point massage is a release of constricted areas in the muscles, alleviating pain.
PNF Stretching (proprioceptive neuromuscular facilitation) is a set of stretching techniques used for flexibility training to increase both active and passive range of motion. According to the International PNF Association, PNF stretching was developed by Dr. Herman Kabat in the 1940s as a means to treat neuromuscular conditions, such as polio and multiple sclerosis. PNF stretching involves stretching the muscle to its limit to trigger the inverse myotatic reflex, which is a protective reflex that calms the muscle to prevent injury and allows a temporary increase in flexibility. With repetition, this increased flexibility becomes part of the normal range of motion.
There are several PNF techniques, however all PNF uses a combination of holding, contracting, and passive stretching.
Cryotherapy (cold therapy) is the therapeutic reduction of soft tissue temperature. Cryotherapy numbs painful areas, decreases inflammation, constricts blood vessels, relaxes muscle spasms, and increases cellular survival. There are many cryotherapy methods including cold packs, compresses, ice, and cooling gels or ointments. Cryotherapy can help to immediately reduce pain by inducing a numbing effect, and will reduce or prevent swelling and inflammation of the damaged tissues.
Cryotherapy works by constricting blood vessels, numbing painful areas, and relaxing muscle spasms.
Heat Therapy is the therapeutic increase of soft tissue temperature. Heat Therapy relaxes tight muscles, increases flexibility, reduces joint tension, and promotes healing. Heat Therapy causes blood vessels to dilate and therefore increases blood flow to the treated area. Methods include hot packs, heating pads, and Hot Rock Massage. When Hot Rock Massage is used, the chiropractor can also apply pressure to targeted areas, allowing the relaxing effects to flow deeper into the muscle.