Chronic Myofascial Pain or CMP, in short, can be described as a painful disorder affecting muscles. This is considered to be the most common reason for many pain clinic appointments. There are almost 400 skeletal muscles within the human body & they account for nearly 50 percent of total body weight. Myofascial pain affects these muscles & results in severe musculoskeletal pain. Chronic myofascial pain is not a fatal condition, but it can be the reason for poor quality of life & is one of the main causes of significant time lost from work. CMP generally causes sensitivity, tightness & limitation of muscle movement in patients. Treatments like acupuncture & relaxations techniques are found to be remarkably beneficial in treating chronic myofascial pain.
What is Chronic Myofascial Pain?
Chronic Myofascial Pain (CMP), also referred to as myofascial pain syndrome is a distressing condition that affects connective tissue covering the muscles (fascia). CMP may either involve a group of muscles or a single muscle. Tenderness, stiffness in muscles & poor quality of sleep are generally observed with chronic myofascial pain but definite cause leading to this condition is still not known. Orthopedic surgeons may simply evaluate regions of muscle pain & associated weakness for diagnosing CMP.
Precise cause of CMP is still not clear but certain conditions which may be responsible for development of CMP are described below.
- General fatigue
- Injury to intervertebral discs
- Repetitive motions
- Health conditions, including irritation of stomach, heart attack
- Injury due to intense physical activity, like a damaged arm in sling
- Excessive stressing of muscle or a group of muscles, tendons or ligaments
Chronic myofascial pain can be identified with the presence of trigger points. Trigger points can be defined as sensitive regions within the muscles which are extremely painful to touch. These trigger points are divided into the following two categories.
- Active Trigger Points – As the name suggests, these points are sore in nature. Pain may increase during any strenuous task resulting in decreased range of movement & instability of muscles.
- Latent Trigger Points – These do not necessarily cause pain during physical activities but are vulnerable when touched. Muscle pain may aggravate when muscles are injured or stressed.
Other major symptoms related to chronic myofascial pain include stiffness, tingling & sensation of muscle weakness. When these symptoms persist for a long interval of time, patients are advised to consult an orthopedist.
Orthopedic surgeons may begin diagnosis with a physical check-up. Orthopedists will most likely observe affected muscles & will perform simple tests to identify degree of pain. They may press suspected trigger points & note specific response of patients. Patients may experience muscle spasm & pain in these areas. Orthopedic surgeons will also check strength of muscles & range of movement for determining patient’s condition. Muscle pain can be caused due to several other conditions as well. Sometimes, surgeons may recommend blood tests to get a clear picture of patient’s condition.
Signs & symptoms of chronic myofascial pain are very much alike other disorders. It is important for patients to choose an experienced orthopedic surgeon. After finding an experienced orthopedist, patients must follow the given guidelines during initial consultation.
- Health Report – Patients should share their medical history reports with orthopedic surgeons. This will allow surgeons to decide proper medical treatment plan for patients.
- Medicines & Supplements – Patients should discuss the medicines, herbs or supplements that they might be taking with orthopedic surgeons. Depending upon the medical condition of patients, surgeons may allow or discontinue certain medications.
- Main Symptoms – Patients should make a list of main symptoms that they have experienced.
- Accident or Injury – Patients should openly tell surgeons about any previous accident or injury.
Patients should not hesitate to answer any questions asked by surgeons in order to get the best outcomes following CMP treatment.
Patients may have several doubts & queries regarding CMP treatment. It is the right of every patient to understand the procedure before undergoing treatment. Following list of questions may help patients seeking high-quality CMP treatment.
- What is chronic myofascial pain (CMP)?
- Is CMP a serious health condition?
- What treatment options are available for CMP?
- How many years of experience do you hold in treating CMP?
- What are the effective nonsurgical treatment options?
- Can I benefit from medications?
- Which medications do you suggest for my condition?
- Are there any side-effects of these medications?
- How long will I need to take the suggested medications?
- Will physical therapy help me?
- If yes, how long will I need to perform physical therapy?
- Will my muscle pain be completely cured following recommended treatment?
- Will I be able to sleep properly at night?
- What measures should I take to live a healthy life afterwards?
Orthopedic surgeons may suggest one of the following treatment options for curing chronic myofascial pain. Surgeons will decide the most appropriate treatment plan reckoning the condition of patients.
- Medications – Primary approach for treating CMP is pain relieving medications. Orthopedists may recommend the following medicines & drugs.
- Pain Killers – Surgeons may prescribe naproxen sodium (Aleve) & ibuprofen (Motrin IB, Advil, others).
- Amitriptyline – In some cases, antidepressants may prove to be helpful. Surgeons may suggest amitriptyline for minimizing pain & improving patient’s quality of sleep.
- Sedatives – Sedatives such as Clonazepam may be recommended as they relax painful muscles.
- Therapy – Physical therapy usually gives satisfactory pain relief. In most cases, surgeons recommend physical therapy.
- Stretching Exercises – Light stretching exercises provide pain relief to a great extent. Physical therapists can train patients to safely perform certain important set of exercises.
- Improving Posture – This can help relieve harsh pain especially around the neck region.
- Massage – Massaging the affected area can soothe & decrease tension. It provides pain relief to a great extent.
- Hot Pack – Hot packs can also provide relief from CMP. Patients should take hot showers after exercising.
- Injections – Injecting a steroid or numbing agent into the affected area (trigger point) can help alleviate harsh chronic myofascial pain. Orthopedists may also suggest acupuncture therapy for better outcomes.
Coping with the condition of chronic myofascial pain can be distressing. Patients should follow guidelines provided by orthopedic surgeons. Exercising & maintaining proper diet can help alleviate pain. Physical therapy plays an important part in recovery. Patients are advised to continue physical therapy under guidance of an experienced physical therapist. Taking proper rest will also help diminish CMP. Chronic myofascial pain can be frustrating sometimes, so patients should also try meditation techniques in order to stay calm & composed. Keeping an optimistic attitude & strong will power is essential for fighting CMP.
Following complications may occur during or after treatment of chronic myofascial pain.
- Sleeping Issues – Patients may find it hard to comfortably sleep at night due to muscle pain. Pain may aggravate due to improper sleeping position or due to pressure on trigger points. Patients must discuss this with orthopedists. Surgeons may help patients with essential medications & may give tips for sound sleep.
- Tensed Muscles – Chronic myofascial pain may spread to additional muscles resulting in intense painful condition. Patients must follow instructions given by surgeons in order to avoid further complications.
- Fibromyalgia – Some doctors believe that CMP may lead to another condition known as fibromyalgia. Best way to avoid complications is to properly follow directions of orthopedic surgeons.
Outcomes of CMP treatment are generally good. Proper diagnosis & treatment can help control & minimize related muscle pain. Constant pain can be depressing & discouraging. Strong mental state is, therefore, essential for coping up with this condition. Patients who pursue a healthy lifestyle are seen to be happier. With proper guidance & family support, patients can beat CMP disorder & stay active throughout their lives.
Benefits of Medical Tourism for Treatment of Chronic Myofascial Pain
Medical tourism nowadays is gaining popularity world-wide. Basically, medical tourism refers to the practice of visiting different countries for obtaining medical facilities at economical prices without compromising on the quality of treatments. This has emerged as a boon for patients who cannot afford expensive healthcare provisions within their homeland. Countries like United Arab Emirates, India, South Korea, Turkey & Germany are some of the top-most global medical tourism destinations offering a wide spectrum of cost-effective medical procedures including orthopedic treatments to international patients. Orthopedic surgeons practicing in these countries follow international standards & they are listed among the finest surgeons across the globe. International patients seeking excellent treatments for their medical problems can avail best outcomes by undergoing healthcare procedures in these countries.
Affordable Treatment for Chronic Myofascial Pain with Travcure Medical Tourism
Travcure Medical Tourism is a globally reputed healthcare provider serving a large range of treatments & services to international patients. Condition of chronic myofascial pain can be quite depressing at times. It is, therefore, essential for patients to wisely choose the best surgeon for undergoing treatment in order to obtain desirable outcomes. Travcure is associated with a wide network of medical professionals & hospitals offering excellent quality treatments for chronic myofascial pain. Healthcare experts at Travcure can provide the most reasonable yet high-quality CMP treatments in countries like India, South Korea, Germany, United Arab Emirates & Turkey. International patients can avail trustworthy & reliable services provided by Travcure. Travcure offers 24*7 free online medical consultations to global patients by linking them to best available surgeons at destinations of their choice. In addition to this, they also offer recuperation packages to overseas patients for ensuring speedy recovery following CMP treatments.
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