King Chiropractic

Using Laser Therapy to Treat Neuropathy

We recently upgraded to a Summus Horizon Laser, which has about twice the power of our previous laser. Because it is so powerful, we are now able to efficiently treat neuropathy (nerve damage to the peripheral nerves of the hands/feet, usually due to diabetes or chemotherapy). Now that we have treated a few patients with it, I am completely blown away! Not only are we seeing less pain and tingling and increased sensation in the feet, we are also seeing some “happy side-effects”. One of our more severe diabetic neuropathy patients had ulcers on the bottom of her big toes that had developed about 6 months ago and were not healing despite her best efforts. She had to clean and dress the wounds daily and could not get them wet. After about 8 treatments, one of the toes was completely healed. Today she came in for for 15th treatment and was ecstatic that both wounds are completely healed now and she no longer has to wear bandages! She also notices that her feet are no longer feel freezing cold anymore. They are nice and warm and pink. Even her leg hair is starting to grow back due to the increased circulation! It is amazing what can happen when you improve blood circulation, which is exactly what the laser does.

Next weekend my laser technician and I are traveling to Nashville to attend a Summus Laser seminar to learn even more about how to treat neuropathy. We are very excited and looking forward to helping a lot more people who are suffering from this debilitating condition!

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Coronavirus: What Makes This One Different

Like many people, I was initially skeptical of the severity of the COVID-19 outbreak. It seems like every year the media finds another disease to scare us with- SARS, swine flu, bird flu, Ebola, Zika- and I figured this was just another attempt to get ratings. However, after reviewing the data, I can see why this virus is a cause for concern. Two things you need to consider when dealing with viruses is 1) how contagious they are and 2) how deadly they are. Fortunately, the COVID-19 virus appears to have a relatively low mortality rate (current average is 3.4%, as low as 0.2% in young people and up to 20% in the elderly). Compare this to SARS, which killed about 1 out of 10 people who were infected (10%). However, COVID-19 is much more contagious. There were only about 8000 confirmed cases of SARS over the course of 8 months. COVID-19 has already infected over 100,000, and it is just getting started. To see a graph comparing the two, check out this link.

What does this mean for us? If you are under 60 and otherwise healthy, COVID-19 will likely just give you cold symptoms and you will recover without medical help. This may make it seem like COVID-19 is no big deal. However, not all of us are young and healthy. Between 10-20% of people infected will require hospitalization. Because the virus is spreading so quickly, this could quickly overwhelm the healthcare system and we could literally run out of hospital beds, masks, medications, etc.

So while COVID-19 may not ending up affecting you much personally, we all have a responsibility as a community to try to slow down the spread of this virus so it can be dealt with more effectively. We don’t need to panic and start hoarding toilet paper and canned goods, but we should be taking the precautions set forth by the CDC: washing hands frequently for 20 seconds, not touching your face, covering your sneezes/coughs, avoiding crowds if possible, and staying home if you are sick.

At King Chiropractic, we are continuing to do what we always do: disinfecting tables and tools between use and using hand sanitizer or washing hands between patients. We have also been doing extra cleaning with Clorox wipes to “high-touch” items such as doorknobs, toys, phones, etc. My staff has been advised to stay home if they are showing any signs of illness.

We ask that you please do you part as well to prevent the spread of COVID-19. If you have a fever or feel unwell, please reschedule your appointment. If in the last 3 weeks, you have traveled or been in close contact from someone who has just returned from China, Hong Kong, Iran, Italy, Japan, South Korea, or Washington State please refrain from public contact as much as possible for 2 – 3 weeks to ensure you are not infected. We will also have a large bottle of hand sanitizer on the front desk for you to use when you come in.

Finally, I would be remiss if I failed to mention one thing that everyone seems to be forgetting. In order for an illness to occur, you need two things- a virus and a host. We have been focusing solely on the virus but ignoring the host (your body). Now is the time to be boosting your immune system as much as possible. Eat healthy, avoid sugar and alcohol, take your vitamins (especially C and D), stay hydrated, reduce/quit smoking, get lots of sleep, and try to minimize stress.

We will get through this!

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The Problem With Pain

Most people visit a chiropractor because they are in pain. It is the chiropractor’s job to determine what is causing the pain and then take steps to fix the problem. In some cases, this can be quite tricky because of something called referred pain, meaning that the pain is felt in a different area than the actual problem. There are a few different types of referred pain:
Radicular: This type of pain is caused by a nerve that is being irritated or compressed. One example is shooting pain down the leg (aka sciatica) caused by a disc herniation in the lumbar spine. This type of pain is typically described as sharp and shooting like an electric shock, and it is often accompanied by numbness or tingling. True radicular pain is not very common; most people who come to see me complaining of sciatica actually have deep referred pain.
Deep referred pain: This type of pain is caused by inflammation and in the joints or ligaments or trigger points (“knots”) in the muscles or tendons. It occurs because of the way the body is wired. For example, nerves coming from your buttock and thigh connect to the spinal cord in the same area as nerves coming from the sacroiliac (pelvic) joint.  Sometimes the brain has difficulty telling where the signal is coming from, and you will perceive pain in both areas.  Therefore, if you have a sprain or misalignment of the sacroiliac joint, you might feel pain in the buttock and thigh even though there is nothing wrong in that area. Many people who think they have sciatica are actually suffering from deep referred pain from the lumbar spine, pelvis, and gluteal muscles.
Deep referred pain is by far the most common type of musculoskeletal pain; I can pretty much guarantee you have experienced it in some form before. It can be quite a good mimic; people will often come to my office with what they think is sciatica, plantar fasciitis, carpal tunnel syndrome, or a “pinched nerve”, only to find out the cause of their pain is being referred from adjacent joints or muscles.
Somatovisceral pain: Signals from the internal organs and musculoskeletal system can also be confused by the brain, causing organic diseases to refer to the musculoskeletal system and vice versa.  One example that you are probably familiar with is the pain that sometimes radiates into the neck, jaw, and down the arm during a heart attack. Fortunately I rarely see this type of pain in my office!
Whatever type of pain you have, don’t ignore it. Pain is your body’s way of telling you something is wrong. Come in and get checked out. If caught early, most problems are fairly simple and can be taken care of easily.
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