We’ve been brainwashed into working through pain. It’s noble. Remember the coaching adage, “No pain, no gain?” I’m the first to say there are some instances when you have to work through pain, like when you need to run from the saber-toothed tiger even though you sprained your ankle. Run or be dinner.
But we don’t live in that world. We live in a world of self-inflicted activities which sometime result in pain and injury.
Boot Camp and other similar exercise programs are keeping my lights on. Of course there are things which are totally out of our control, like tornados and earthquakes. Natural disasters wreak havoc on delicate humans. And sadly, there are those of us who suffer from diseases and genetic disorders like arthritis. Continue Reading
My parents helped me so much with my kids when they were little. Loving, experienced… and free caregivers. It don’t get much better than that. Fortunately my folks lived close, so often my kids went to their place.
But many grandparents live far away, or take care of grandkids at their children’s home. Even when coming for a social visit, they often end up babysitting, and trust me. They love it. Continue Reading
And you thought I just do surgery on knees and shoulders!
But I’m not here to advise you on color, wall paper or tile. I am here to suggest a house in which you can stay come hell or high water… or when you get old.
"Dr. No," the first James Bond film.
Many of you will come to know me as Dr. No. Often I find myself making recommendations NOT to do certain activities over doing them. It’s safer and less complicated. For example, “Don’t ride a motorcycle.” Pretty much everyone knows it’s unsafe to ride a motorcycle, even if you enjoy riding one.
But wouldn’t it be equally easy for me to say, “It’s okay to ride a motorcycle… on a flat, dry, straight road with a helmet on?” Of course not, because you can still get maimed doing just what the doctor recommended.
That’s right! It’s pretty much what I tell most of my patients. “What makes your orthopedic surgeon money, is probably something you shouldn’t be doing.” Go ahead. Try to name an orthopedic condition–other than inheritable diseases or bad luck–that isn’t related to something we do to ourselves. Something preventable.
Sports medicine injuries… Completely preventable. Don’t participate in sports, and you probably won’t tear your ACL. I know there are a few exceptions. Bear with me here… Continue Reading
As a result of backyard football games, this week I saw four “jammed fingers” in my office. Note: It’s been two weeks since Thanksgiving… since these happened. Now I’m not saying to make an appointment every time you jam your finger. But honestly, consider it, especially if there’s a lot of pain or swelling, and absolutely if your finger looks funny. I’m here to tell you, it won’t straighten out on its own. Two of my patients will have permanent deformity and stiffness, simply because they waited too long. Continue Reading
Some of you may have already noticed I often refer to our ancient ancestors when analyzing reasons for, and the treatment of, our aches and pains. Although there is fossilized evidence that early homo sapiens cared for the old and infirm, it’s well-known the average length of a prehistoric human’s life was only 20-30 years.
When asked by my patients why they’re physically suffering at the age of 50 or 60, I often remind them to give thanks to the many factors which have allowed them to live this long life, including their body’s ability to heal itself. Continue Reading
Scarlett and Mammy in "Gone With the Wind"
How did we ever reach bras with fasteners in the back? We didn’t reach blouses with buttons in the back. Were the hooks and eyes in the back of the brassiere some kind of sadistic, puritanical design, the purpose of which was to make it harder for men to undo them? Was it to exercise and stretch out the muscles of our chests, or was it just a simple holdover from the days of corsets which laced in the back? Continue Reading
There’s an organized group of walkers where my folks live that requires all participants use walking sticks or hiking poles, simply because they lessen the likelihood of falling. They’re lightweight aluminum, collapsible and sporty looking, so it doesn’t look like you’re using canes. In general, older folks are reluctant to use canes because it makes them look… old. I decided to try them out, and here are my findings and opinions, regarding walking sticks. Continue Reading