Surgical decompression of nerves, such as carpal tunnel surgery, used to be the option of choice for people desiring to get rid of hand weakness, numbness, tingling, swelling and pain. Nerve hydrodissection with ultrasound guidance offers a safe and effective non-surgical alternative treatment for entrapped or compressed nerves. Even more amazing, is that some treatments have no recovery period and no lost days from work. Dr. Jennifer Stebbing DO, founder of Musculoskeletal & Sports Medicine in Camas, WA, specializes in innovative non-surgical treatment options for a number of musculoskeletal conditions, including nerve injuries. To find out you are a candidate for nerve hydrodissection, call today or book an appointment online.
A compressed nerve can occur in a number of different areas of the body, including but not limited to the wrists, shoulders, elbows, knees and ankles. The pathways of nerves, known from the study of cadavers, can be followed through the length of a limb. There are known common areas of entrapment. These areas of entrapment may occur to nerves that travel under ligaments, against a bone, between two muscles or within fascia, the tissue that envelops or surrounds muscles, tendons, blood vessels and most of the soft tissue in our body. When nerves get compressed, they swell, or have enlargements of fascicles, the cables within them. These can be visualized with ultrasound.
Typical symptoms of an injured nerve include:
However, nerve injuries can also appear months to years after a sensory nerve is cut, for instance after a c-section or other surgery, when the nerve starts to grow back. In these cases, there can be localized swelling, skin color changes, loss of hair in the area, and/or more diffuse pain, that limits mobility and make it difficult to perform your daily activities. In many cases, non-surgical treatment with nerve hydrodissection can successfully relieve the nerve compression.
An EMG (Electromyography) and NCS (nerve conduction study) when preformed by a qualified physician can help to determine where a nerve is injured. Ultrasound can also do this, in a very different way, as the shape and caliber of the nerve can be altered. Dr Stebbing’s training in osteopathic medicine, offers the advantage of using her fingers to feels for changes in the skin and swelling of small sensory nerves. Her training with Dr John Lyftoft, MD (perineural treatment) has opened up a road map of many of the sensory unmyelinated nerves that can cause severe pain when injured and are not always easily evaluated with EMG/NCS or US. Treatment of these nerves can eliminate the pain that other therapies have not been able to do. There may be no need for a lifetime of pills.
Nerve hydro-dissection is done with ultrasound visualization. A stream of fluid is used to separate the nerve from the tissue around it, freeing the nerve from whatever has compressed it, allowing it to again glide freely through the tissue. Nerve hydro-dissection might need to be repeated but, unlike surgery, there is no risk of scar formation, which is a common cause of nerve entrapment and nerve pain.
Nerve hydrodissection can be done with 5% dextrose, with platelet poor plasma (which has many growth factors in it) or platelet-rich plasma (without red blood cells or white blood cells).
To learn whether you are a candidate for treatment with nerve hydrodissection or perineural therapy, call Dr. Jennifer Stebbing or book an appointment online today.
For additional information on treatment options for pain, obtain a copy of my Book “I Can Sit Again: Non-surgical options for Tailbone Pain” for further information about injuries and healing such as:
What you can do to improve your treatment success.
Why it is important to tell your doctor your whole health history.
Why it is important to treat injuries early.