Our personal equation
One of the ways I sometimes talk about complicated conditions is that they are like an equation.
We know the answer equals pain.
But the different factors involved that create your personal trigger list, particularly if this problem has been going on a while, can be far more nuanced and complex then simply, “I fell and now my knee hurts”.
Recognising the multiple factors involved can be hard – I often “joke” that if you always get a migraine at your mother in law’s house, perhaps the trigger isn’t just the brand of air freshener she’s using.
In fact headaches and migraines are a really good example of how important it is to address multiple different factors in treatment and not just “pop a pill”. And how personal that trigger equation can be – diet, hormones, stress, previous injuries, brain chemistry, nerve and muscle inflammation, jaw and dental health, eye health – all of these and more can be part of your headache equation.
Personally, in the last 5 years or so that we have had our Headache Clinic, I’ve found that thermal imaging can provide some interesting insights into musculoskeletal triggers and I’m finding Lisa’s input on diet and hormones and Heather’s self management techniques are adding a new dimension to my work. We should have some new ideas to post on Instagram and Facebook soon!
2020 has been a bit of a bust for anything group related unless you can do it on Zoom!
But, we live in hope that 2021 will be an improvement.
To that end we are going to spend the next few months tidying and organising our large upstairs space to create a proper space for groups.
Obviously Ioanna will be leading the way with her Pilates classes! But we hope that we might find some other group instructors looking for a suitable space and also restart some of the popular workshops we’ve hosted in the past like First Aid and other seminars. We’re excited for what this could involve so watch this space for new ideas starting in 2021! (Yup, I too have 2020 fatigue. Is it Christmas and New Year yet?)
Obviously if you’re mad keen to get something organised ahead of time speak to Emmie!
Evidence and medicine
So, as many of you know (some much better than me!) a “double blind study with placebo and control group” is considered the ideal for figuring out if a medication works. Basically you want to know if a medication is better than doing nothing.
But, interestingly, surgery didn’t have to conform to the same standards. In fact, sometimes there was very little investigation into whether a new technique was better than nothing at all.
Now more research is being done into both the efficacy of different techniques (they compare them to “sham” surgery – all the drama and scar, none of the interior work) and their long term effects.
It’s been fascinating to learn which techniques make a real difference to a patient’s pain and which . . . don’t.
Much has been done looking at knee surgery. Arthroscopies have not come out well – they had no improvement over sham surgery. And now meniscutomies are also coming under fire with concerns that they may actually increase the risk of osteoarthritis later on.
An interesting time for the musculoskeletal profession as the treatment plans that have been offered to patients are thoroughly reviewed to see whether they are in the patient’s best interest.
Fairies are real.
At the weekend we took a little wander to El Pinar del Rey national park by San Roque to hunt fairies.
But back here on the Costa del Sol I’ve heard about some real life fairies and the charity work they’ve been doing this year.
Particularly as they are starting to prepare Christmas presents for kids who have been affected by the madness of 2020.
And it got me thinking – perhaps we could band together and create a little Christmas magic ourselves?
Buy presents from local businesses, wrap them in paper from the small gift shops and help make so many people’s Christmas a little bit more magic and sparkly.
We can do all the shopping and delivering if you, our wonderful community, can support us. Are you in?
Well, that’s it from me this week, I’ll see you next week, let me know your adventures! Be sure to send me any interesting things you find on your travels that you think I should include!