What is Low Level Laser Therapy?

Posted by Lori Algar OTD, OTR/L, CHT on Wed, Feb 22,2017 @ 03:46 PM

What is low level laser therapy?

Low level laser therapy is a form of alternative medicine that uses laser light at low levels or near-infrared light. The light is applied to the surface skin of the body with the intentions of decreasing pain or inflammation, promoting healing of wounds, tissues, and nerves, or for preventing tissue damage. This is much different than the high level lasers that we know for surgical procedures to cut and destroy unhealthy tissue.

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Adjusting Oval-8 Splints: A Video Guide for Health Care Providers

Posted by Nick Koscielniak on Thu, Feb 09,2017 @ 07:40 AM


With a total of 28 sizes, it's rare not to find the perfect fit for your patient's Oval-8 finger splints.While each of the 14 Oval-8 splints fits two sizes with a simple turn of the splint, occasionally they may need to be adjusted to fine tune the size or alter the angle or length. For those times when the length may not be just right or you want to hold the joint at a slight angle, custom fitting an Oval-8 takes only seconds.
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Tags: Oval-8 finger splint, Videos

Ulnar Collateral Ligament Injury of the Thumb

Posted by Lori Algar OTD, OTR/L, CHT on Fri, Jan 27,2017 @ 07:06 AM

Treatment for Gamekeeper's and Skier's Thumb

The thumb metacarpal phalangeal (MP) joint has a collateral ligament at the radial and ulnar aspect of the joint which provides stability for static lateral pinch. The ulnar collateral ligament (UCL) is susceptible to injury when radial deviation and hyperextension force is applied to the MP joint. The “classic” acute Skier’s thumb occurs when the thumb is forcefully abducted and hyperextended by the pole during a fall. Gamekeeper's thumb is differentiated from Skier’s Thumb as a chronic, repetitive stress condition caused by resistive grasping and twisting activities that stretch or tear the UCL over time.  
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Tags: Gamekeepers thumb, Skiers thumb

Wrist Pain after a Fall on an Outstretched Hand (FOOSH)

Posted by Lori Algar OTD, OTR/L, CHT on Mon, Jan 09,2017 @ 02:09 PM

 There are a variety of wrist injuries that can occur from a traumatic fall on an outstretched hand. These injuries are termed FOOSH (fall on an outstretched hand) injuries. Probably the most well-known FOOSH is a distal radius fracture, which is identified and treated first by a physician. As you may be seeing an increase in referrals for wrist pain from falls this time of year, now may be a good time to review the clinical signs used to find other FOOSH injuries.

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Tags: Wrist Injuries, FOOSH

Using Thumb Splints to Treat De Quervain’s Tenosynovitis

Posted by Jennifer Curtis on Tue, Dec 20,2016 @ 04:51 PM

Patients with de Quervain’s Tenosynovitis may complain of a swollen thumb and radial-sided wrist pain. The pain may become worse, and may radiate up the thumb or forearm, during activities that require abduction or flexion of the thumb, including playing tennis or golf, knitting, gardening, painting, and picking up a baby.

In most cases, de Quervain’s is caused by overuse or repetitive stress, although the condition may develop for unknown reasons.

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Tags: de quervains tenosynovitis

Using a Splint for Treatment of Trigger Finger

Posted by Lori Algar OTD, OTR/L, CHT on Thu, Dec 08,2016 @ 11:20 AM

As we know, trigger finger is a common hand issue that occurs with the locking or triggering of a finger, pain in the middle joint, and tenderness with palpation at the base of the finger. Trigger Finger commonly occurs between the ages of 55 and 60 years old and is said to occur 2-6 times more frequently in women than in men.

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Tags: Trigger finger

How To Diagnose and Treat Limited Range of Motion in Fingers

Posted by Lori Algar OTD, OTR/L, CHT on Wed, Nov 30,2016 @ 02:31 PM

The ability to use the hand effectively for functional tasks is related to the available range of motion in the fingers. There is scarce literature on the specific motion needed for functional use of the digits, however one study suggests that at least 61 degrees is needed at the metacarpophalangeal (MCP) joint, at least 60 degrees at the proximal interphalangeal (PIP) joint, and at least 39 degrees at the distal interphalangeal (DIP) joint.

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Tags: Limited Range of Motion in Fingers

Conservative Treatment of Scapholunate Ligament Injury

Posted by Lori Algar OTD, OTR/L, CHT on Fri, Nov 18,2016 @ 07:00 AM

The scapholunate (SL) ligament runs between the scaphoid and the lunate and provides crucial support to allow appropriate carpal mechanics at the wrist during motion and use of the hand. Injury and tearing of this ligament can occur with trauma or as a progressive degenerative weakening of the ligament. The extent of the injury ranges from a partial tear or attenuation to a full rupture of the ligament and from dynamic instability

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Tags: scapholunate ligament injury

Comfort Cool or Design Line- A Comparison of Thumb Arthritis Splints

Posted by Lori Algar OTD, OTR/L, CHT on Wed, Oct 26,2016 @ 11:26 AM

Osteoarthritis (OA) at the base of the thumb is a common diagnosis among older individuals.  Research suggests that 26.2% of women and 13.4 % of men age 71-100 years old have symptoms of this diagnosis and that approximately 70% of community dwelling individuals with hand pain have OA at the base of the thumb as well.

An orthosis is a common intervention used in hand therapy to treat symptoms of this diagnosis. Studies have consistently found that using an orthosis helps to decrease pain and improve function for individuals with arthritis at the base of the thumb.
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Tags: Thumb Arthritis Splints

What I Gained From This Year’s ASHT Annual Meeting

Posted by Lori Algar OTD, OTR/L, CHT on Thu, Oct 13,2016 @ 09:43 AM

A Therapist's Insight to the ASHT Annual Meeting

This year the American Society of Hand Therapists’ Annual Meeting was held in Washington, DC and I was fortunate to be able to attend. As always, the meeting was excellent and packed with valuable information, good people, and individuals who care about the profession of hand therapy. These details alone are very motivating to a hand therapist, but in reflection, there are a few more things that are priceless about this live conference.

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Tags: ASHT

Our blogs are presented for informational purposes only and are not to be considered medical advice.  We will gladly answer questions or comments pertaining to any products mentioned in our blogs, however, we cannot provide a diagnosis or medical advice.