Take a look at your hand and straighten your fingers out. If they look crooked, there can be a few different possibilities of what may be taking place. A specific pattern that will be discussed in this article is called Swan Neck deformity. In a swan neck finger, the tip of the finger is bent […]
Right Side Dominant?
At least eighty-five percent of us are naturally “wired” to use the right side of our body more efficiently than the left side of our body. Right hand dominance is the norm, and this is reflected in many of the objects that we deal with on a daily basis. Here is a list of things […]
Physical Therapist Reviews YouTube HITT Routines
Once the pandemic hit in 2020 I could no longer use my favorite gym due to restricted hours and Covid safety protocols. This was frustrating to say the least. What did I do? I pulled myself up by my bootstraps and purchased a yoga mat along with several sets of dumbbells. It was time to […]
Drawing: A Tool For Learning Anatomy
As any first-time student struggling with learning anatomy will tell you, the body is as complex as it is interesting. Organs, joints, muscles, tendons, fascial structures, bones, and ligaments all have specific three-dimensional relationships to one another that serve to optimize function. The learning and retention of this complex anatomy requires something that students who […]
Post-Traumatic Elbow Contractures: Etiology & Therapeutic Interventions
An elbow that will not entirely straighten can be quite frustrating when it comes to performing closed kinetic chain exercises such as push-ups and yoga poses (such as the “downward dog”). This loss of full range of motion can make the lengths of the arms functionally uneven, making closed kinetic chain activities awkward and in […]
Allowing Tendonitis To Heal
I hate tendonitis and the misery that it brings. The loss of function, the psychological frustration that comes with having pain with motion, and visits to health professionals are annoyances that many of us who have tendonitis must endure. Tendonitis is inflammation of a tendon that usually stems from repetitive stress or overuse. We commonly […]
Why Are My Ring Finger & Pinky Finger Numb?
Have you ever awoken to a numb hand? This is the result of one or more of the nerves in the arm being either clamped or stretched due to sleeping position. One of the most common nerves involved in this type of numbness is the ulnar nerve, as it passes around the elbow joint in […]
I Can’t Open My Hand All the Way: A Look at Dupuytren’s Disease
Why can’t I open my hand? There is an interesting phenomenon in the world of hand illness called Dupuytren’s disease. It is a progressive illness that causes a contracture on the palm of the hand, making it difficult to fully open. This causes many problems including the following: difficulty being able to grasp difficulty with […]
Why Won’t My Elbow Straighten?
On one occasion while playing basketball, I was knocked off of my feet, and I landed onto my left elbow. Thankfully, my elbow was not fractured, although it did bruise up substantially. In addition to some swelling, I soon noticed an inability to straighten out my elbow. For many months my elbow remained unable to […]
Suffering from Trigger Finger?
The common definition of “trigger finger” involves a person who enjoys or is perhaps likely to discharge a firearm. The medical definition of a “trigger finger” is quite different. Trigger fingers (sometimes referred to as stenosing tenosynovitis, ugh) are quite painful. Typical symptoms include a painful range of motion of the finger(s) with bending and […]
Why Is My Index Finger Numb?
As a follow up to our previous article entitled “Why Are My Ring Finger and Pinky Finger Numb?” we thought that it would be worth addressing one of the other major nerves that innervates the hand, namely the median nerve. The median nerve has sensory innervation to the tips of the thumb, index finger, and […]
Experiencing Stiff Hands?
Muscles all over the body have the potential to become stiff and restricted from daily activities. When I evaluate a patient for the first time, I often ask them which of their muscles feel chronically tight. The most common replies are the hamstrings and the muscles of the neck. Even though we use our hands […]
The “Safe” Position of the Hand
Have you ever wondered why a hand is casted in the following position when it is healing from a fracture? (See photo above) This certainly is not the typical resting position of the hand, but there is indeed a rationale as to why the “safe position” works better than other positions for prolonged periods of […]
How to Properly Deal with Finger Fractures & Sprains
We have been seeing a lot of finger fractures and sprains as of late. Here is my list of finger facts that you may find useful if you ever have to deal with a finger trauma and subsequent rehabilitation. 1. Don’t panic If your finger is crushed, jammed, sliced, slammed, or otherwise traumatized, in all […]
Right Side Dominant: Do We Have A Problem?
Yes, you actually might have a problem if you are “too right-sided.” Let me start by saying that our brains are naturally wired to be right side dominant. If everything goes well in utero, during childbirth, and during our early developmental stages, one can expect to be right-handed. It so happens that this is the […]
Musicians & Complex Motor Programming of The Hands
I have always marveled at the complexity of the sensorimotor programming of the hands. From an evolutionary standpoint, we developed the ability to oppose, circumduct, flex, extend, and abduct the thumb. This allowed us to effectively grasp objects and tools. Our remaining fingers have a complex network of both intrinsic and extrinsic muscles that provide […]
Information on Stroke Recovery
In a nutshell, strokes are awful. Strokes affect upwards of 800,000 people per year in the U.S. and cost our healthcare system a massive amount of money. There is a huge range of severity involved with strokes. For example, my grandfather had a small stroke that resulted in lost vision in one of his eyes. […]
What Is Normal Range of Motion for The Thumb?
Have you ever noticed that some people can flex and extend their thumb into crazy positions, while others have very limited thumb motion? What in fact is a “normal” amount of thumb motion? This is a tough question to answer given that the metacarpal-phalangeal joint (MCP joint) of the thumb has a somewhat unique property […]