Myofascial Pain Syndrome: Understanding Your Treatment Options

Many of us will experience muscle pain at some point, and it usually resolves after a few weeks. But for those living with myofascial pain syndrome, that muscle pain persists. 

When you have myofascial pain syndrome, you have sensitive spots known as trigger points, or muscle knots. Trigger points are areas that develop in the ropey bands of your muscles (fascia). Whenever pressure is applied to these trigger points, it can send out pain to other places in your body. This is known as referred pain.

Myofascial pain syndrome can be localized to one muscle or affect an entire group of muscles. 

If you deal with myofascial pain syndrome, it’s important to understand your treatment options so you can get much needed relief. So, in this month’s blog, our pain management team at LA Pain Doctor discusses more about this chronic muscle pain condition and how we treat it. 

Understanding myofascial pain syndrome 

Myofascial pain syndrome happens when your muscles and the fascia that surround them become inflamed. It can lead to symptoms such as aching pain, sore muscles, reduced range of motion, and weak muscles. Some living with myofascial pain syndrome develop other simultaneous conditions such as headaches, insomnia, chronic fatigue, anxiety, and depression. 

This muscle pain condition can develop for numerous reasons. Some of the most common causes include:

You can be at a higher risk for developing myofascial pain syndrome if you work in a cold environment, have a nutritional deficiency, have poor posture, sit for long periods of time, or have a hormonal imbalance. 

Treating myofascial pain syndrome

Myofascial pain syndrome can’t be detected through any sort of lab test or imaging procedure. Instead, we use imaging tests to rule out other conditions that could be causing pain and also conduct a physical exam and review of your symptoms. 

If we determine that you do have myofascial pain syndrome, we can talk you through all our available treatment options. Many of our treatments focus on the trigger points that are causing the muscle pain in the first place. 

Medication

There are several kinds of medication that can relieve pain from myofascial pain syndrome, including nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), muscle relaxants, and anticonvulsants.

Trigger point injections

This treatment involves inserting a needle directly into a trigger point and then releasing a saline solution, steroid, or anesthetic into the muscle tissue. This should help with pain relief. 

Ultrasound therapy 

Ultrasound machines can release sound waves to heat up the muscles that are causing you pain. They can also help improve blood flow, relax your muscles, and remove any scar tissue. This treatment should significantly reduce stiffness and improve range of motion. 

If you’re living with myofascial pain syndrome, don’t delay seeking treatment. Schedule an appointment with our team by calling your nearest office location or booking online today.  We proudly serve the New Orleans and Luling, Louisiana, areas.

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