Dr. Trujillo deals with chronic pain with many of our Summit Healthcare patients. One source is known as myofascial pain syndrome. Myofascial pain syndrome is unlike many chronic pain sources in that it is muscle related, rather than back or joint related.
Dr. Trujillo can help you deal with the chronic pain of this condition.
What is myofascial pain syndrome?
If a person has myofascial pain syndrome, pressure on sensitive points in the muscles, called trigger points, causes pain in the muscle and sometimes in seemingly unrelated parts of the body. This syndrome typically occurs after a muscle has been contracted repetitively. This repetition can be necessary to perform a job or for a hobby. It can also be due to stress-related muscle tension.
We all experience muscle pain, but the pain associated with myofascial pain syndrome persists or becomes worse.
What are symptoms of myofascial pain syndrome?
- Deep, aching pain in a muscle
- Pain that persists or worsens
- A tender knot in a muscle
- Difficult sleeping due to pain
What causes this?
Sensitive areas of tight muscle fibers can form in your muscles after injury or overuse. These sensitive muscle fibers are called trigger points. A small trigger point can cause pain throughout the length of the muscle. When this pain persists or worsens, this is then deemed myofascial pain syndrome.
If you’ve injured a muscle or continually overuse a muscle, it’s more likely you can develop trigger points in that muscle. Also, people under continual stress and anxiety are more likely to develop myofascial pain syndrome, as it’s thought they tend to clench their muscles, repeating strain that turns into trigger points.
How is myofascial pain syndrome treated?
Dr. Trujillo has different options for treating this pain disorder.
- Medications— Pain relievers, some in patch form, can help some patients. Antidepressants, particularly amitriptyline, can be effective for reducing pain and improving sleep. Sedatives can lower anxiety and aid sleep, but can be habit-forming.
- Needle procedures— Injecting a numbing agent or a steroid directly into a trigger point can relieve the pain. In some patients, simply inserting the needle into the trigger point helps break the muscle tension. This is called dry needling.
- Physical therapy— Stretching, massage, heat, ultrasound, and posture training can all be employed based on your individual signs and symptoms.
If you have enduring pain in a muscle, you could have myofascial pain syndrome. Call us at Summit Healthcare Pain Clinic, (928) 532-1605, to make an appointment.