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Doctor Q&A with Dr. Rae Davis: Answers on Myofascial Pain Syndrome and Trigger Points

The pain management specialists at National Spine & Pain Centers are passionate about patient education. In our Doctor Q&A blog category, you’ll find answers to questions commonly asked by patients and their family members, as well as questions about topics recently seen in the news. In this article, NSPC’s Dr. Davis discusses the condition myofascial pain syndrome.

My first step to treating pain is to listen. Then I tailor a treatment plan to restore your physical well being. – Rae J. Davis, M.D.

Q: I was told that I have myofascial pain and trigger points. What should I do?

Dr. Davis: You have already tackled the most important step, which is getting a diagnosis. If you are suffering from pain, seeing a pain specialist is where to start. Myofascial pain is a chronic condition that affects the body’s soft tissues. It most often occurs when a muscle, muscle group, ligament, or tendon is strained or injured. Injured tissue may tighten and contract putting painful pressure on nerves, muscles, bones, or organs. The area where the injury occurs is referred to as a trigger point. It may feel like a “knot” or “band” in the muscle. Often very sensitive to even light pressure, these trigger points typically generate pain not only at the site, but also in various other areas of the body.

At National Spine & Pain Centers, treatment for myofascial pain syndrome involves a multifaceted program that has been meticulously developed by our physicians. Designed to break up the trigger point and relieve areas of muscle soreness, this comprehensive program includes integrating several types of physical therapy, such as ultrasound, electrical stimulation, and myofascial release. It may also include massage therapy, chiropractic or osteopathic manipulation, and nutritional supplementation.

Trigger point injections have also proven to be very effective in reducing spasms and relaxing muscles. Exercise and change in sleeping habits may favorably impact your condition as well.

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