Plantar fasciitis is a common condition that causes pain in the heel and bottom of the foot, often due to inflammation of the plantar fascia, a thick band of tissue that connects the heel bone to the toes. Usually, the pain is worse in the morning and when weight-bearing.
Flat feet (pes planus) refer to a change in foot shape in which the foot does not have a ‘normal’ arch in standing. Arches develop during early childhood. If the arches don’t develop this can cause pain and affect walking.
Metatarsal fractures are among the most common injuries of the foot that may occur due to trauma or repetitive microstress. It is defined as a complete or incomplete break in one of the five metatarsal bones of the foot.
Bunions are associated with Hallux Valgus, a condition where the big toe drifts outwards, toward the smaller toes, causing a bony bump to occur. Pain from bunions develops here due to shoe irritation, and in the other toes due to crowding and layered mechanical forces in the ball of the foot.
As the name suggests, a hammer toe is a deformity of the second, third or fourth toes where the toe is bent at the middle joint, resembling a hammer; normally due to an imbalance in the soft tissue structures that hold the toes straight. The type of shoes you wear, foot structure, trauma and certain disease processes can contribute to the development of this deformity.
This is inflammation in the tendons that connect your lower leg to your foot on the outer edge of your ankle. They help stabilise and balance your foot and ankle, protecting them from injuries. It’s usually due to overuse of the tendons but it can also be the result of a sudden injury, such as an ankle sprain.
A heel spur is a bony growth that protrudes out below your heel inside your foot, causing pain or discomfort when pressure is applied. Heel spurs happen when there is stress on the foot ligaments. Most people don’t realise they have a heel spur until they seek help from a healthcare provider.
Pain on the outside aspect of the wrist due to injury of the triangular fibrocartilage complex which gives the wrist stability.
A fracture of one of the carpal bones of the wrist near the thumb which has a slow rate of healing.
Carpal tunnel syndrome is a common condition that causes numbness, tingling, and weakness in the hand and wrist. It occurs when the median nerve, which runs through a narrow passageway in the wrist called the carpal tunnel, becomes compressed or pinched.
80% of people will experience an episode of low back pain in their lifetime. There are usually multiple causes for pain which can resolve with physio and exercise without the need for scans and X-rays.
Mid back pain can radiate into the chest and is usually due to stiffness and tightness through the muscles and joints in your back.
Upper back and neck pain is very common especially with sitting at a computer. It’s important to move regularly and change position throughout the day.
Many people are very concerned about their discs in their spine. We used to think herniated discs were the cause of back pain however we now know that many people who have no back pain have herniated discs seen on scans. They are wrinkles on the inside.
Sciatica is when you have low back pain with radiating pain down the back of your leg which is usually worse at night. This is caused by irritation of the nerve. Physiotherapy can help to resolve this pain.
This is when the space for the spinal cord becomes narrow. Some people may have no symptoms as the body adapts while others may experience back pain and numbness into the legs.
Degeneration is a normal part of ageing, many people with no history of back pain have degenerative discs when they have scans. They are wrinkles on the inside and no need for concern. It is important for all of us to move regularly and remain strong and in shape.
PGP also known as symphysis pubis dysfunction (SPD). PGP is a collection of uncomfortable symptoms generally caused by a stiffness of your pelvic joints, or the joints moving unevenly at either the back or front of your pelvis. It can present itself as pain/discomfort in the lower back, pelvic area or pubic bone.
Urinary incontinence is the unintentional passing of urine. It’s a common problem thought to affect millions of people but often is not discussed.
There are several types of urinary incontinence, including:
Total Incontinence – when your bladder cannot store any urine at all, which causes you to pass urine constantly or have frequent leaking.
This includes pain during sexual intercourse, involuntary painful contraction (spasm) of the muscles around the vagina, and lack of interest or desire for sex and problems with arousal or orgasm; this often then causes distress for the woman.
This is the separation of the muscles along the middle of the abdomen, typically seen in women during and after pregnancy. It sometimes is presented as a ‘doming’ of the abdominal muscles when they are under stress.
Pelvic organ prolapse is when one or more of the organs in the pelvis protrude down from their ‘normal’ position and bulge into the vagina. It can be the uterus, bowel, bladder or top of the vagina.
Carpal tunnel syndrome is a condition that occurs when swelling in your wrist presses on a nerve (median) and causes pain in your hand. Unfortunately it is common in pregnancy, usually due to the global swelling throughout the body, and goes away when the baby is born. It can cause pain, weakness, numbness and/or tingling in your thumb, fingers and hand.
Ankle instability is caused by weakened ligaments surrounding the ankle bones. This is most often a direct result of one or more ankle injuries that do not heal properly. With each sprain the ligaments are further stretched and weakened resulting in greater instability.
An ankle sprain occurs when the strong ligaments that support the ankle stretch beyond their limits and tear (to differing degrees). The severity of a sprain can vary greatly depending on the number of ligaments involved and to the extent to which the ligaments are torn.
Achilles tendinitis is a common condition that occurs when the large tendon that runs down the back of the lower leg and connects it to the heel bone, becomes irritated and inflamed. It often presents as worse pain in the morning, that gets better with time and use throughout the day.
Shin splints, or medial tibial stress syndrome, refers to pain and tenderness along or just behind the shin bone (tibia). They most commonly happen after hard exercises or repetitive activity. This repetitive action can lead to inflammation of the muscles, tendons and thin layer of tissue covering the shin bones, causing pain.
Posterior tibial dysfunction (PTTD) is a painful condition that affects the foot and ankle. The posterior tibial tendon connects your calf muscle to bones on the inside of your foot. The main purpose of the tendon is to support the arch on the inside of your foot, therefore when injured it can affect your ability to walk or perform certain lower body movements. PTTD can be treated through nonsurgical or surgical methods.
Also known as femoroacetabular impingement (FAI); this occurs when the ball of the hip joint pinches against the socket of the hip (acetabulum). There are two main types of FAI. The first is a deformity of the femoral head (ball). It has a more oval appearance, which creates friction when the ball hits the acetabulum. The second type occurs when the acetabulum is abnormally shaped. The cup may cover the head of the femur too much, creating friction on the head/neck of the femur.
A labral tear is an injury to the tissue that holds the ball (femoral head) and socket (acetabulum) parts of the hip together. A torn hip labrum may cause pain, reduced range of motion in the hip and a sensation of the hip locking up. Labral tears are typically caused by overuse, traumatic injuries or abnormalities in the shape or alignment of the hip bones. They can generally be treated with or without surgery.
Iliotibial band syndrome is a common knee injury that usually presents with pain and/or tenderness on palpation of the lateral aspect of the knee, above the joint line and below the lateral femoral epicondyle. It is considered a non-traumatic overuse injury, often seen in runners and cyclists. It is often concomitant with underlying weakness of hip abductor muscles.
Involves irritation of the sacroiliac joint; the joint that connects the sacrum (base of the spine) to the ilium (top of the pelvis). It can often cause pain and stiffness in the lower back/buttocks and down the legs. Prolonged sitting, standing and stair climbing may exacerbate the pain. It can also commonly be felt during pregnancy.
This is the pain or discomfort felt in the inner thigh muscles (adductors). It is most often a result of a muscle, tendon, or ligament strain following an injury due to physical activity. It is common in contact sports such as rugby or hockey, or when twisting and/or kicking is involved, like tennis and football.
This involves inflammation of the small fluid filled sacs (bursae) that provide cushioning between the soft tissues and the bones of the hip. Most commonly, bursitis causes pain on the outside of the upper thigh, at the hip joint, but can extend down the outside of the thigh.The most common causes are repetitive motions and overuse.
There are several causes for pelvic pain including infection, or a problem with one of the organs in the pelvic area such as the bowel or bladder. However it may also be caused by muscle, ligament or bone damage in the area.
The rotator cuff comprises four muscles and tendons that support your shoulder girdle, providing stability to the joint. Repetitive movements that strain the rotator cuff can cause damage. Another common cause of rupture is injury. Rotator cuff injuries cause pain and stiffness with raising and moving your arm.
Also known as Adhesive Capsulitis. It involves the insidious onset of stiffness and pain in the shoulder joint. Scar tissue forms within the joint capsule and the soft tissues become inflamed. It can be a long rehabilitation process, even sometimes years.
This is when hard calcium deposits form on soft tissue, in this case on tendons of the rotator cuff. The tendons then come inflamed and cause pain.
This is a group of disorders that occur when the blood vessels or nerves in the space between your clavicle (collar bone) and your first rib are compressed. This can cause shoulder and neck pain and numbness in your fingers.
Involves damage to the cartilage inside the shoulder joint, where the cartilage either on the ball and/or socket sides start wearing down. Inflammation then occurs and can cause pain, stiffness and reduced range of motion.
This is inflammation of the bursa (fluid filled sac) which can cause pain and sometimes redness in the shoulder. It can also affect mobility of the arm. It is often due to overload, trauma, older age or an inflamed joint.
Also called shoulder impingement; it is a condition where swimmers often aggravate their shoulders while they swim due to the constant joint rotation. This results from inflammation of the tendons of the shoulder. Repeated strain irritates the tendon causing micro-tears. It is common with repeated lifting and other overhead sports like tennis or basketball.
This occurs when the shoulder tendons, more specifically rotator cuff tendons, are irritated and inflamed. As a result, the top outer edge of the shoulder blade (acromion) pinches against the rotator cuff tendons beneath it, usually with overhead arm movements. This can result in pain, weakness and reduced range of motion.
The anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) is a key structure in the knee joint. It resists forward movement of the tibia (shin bone) on the femur (thigh bone), as well as rotational loads in the knee joint. Injuries can range from small sprains to complete tears. Most commonly they occur as a non-contact injury in sports involving pivoting, or with sudden twisting movements of the knee. Common symptoms include a popping sound at the time of injury, pain, swelling and a feeling of instability.
The medial collateral ligament (MCL) is situated on the inside of the knee joint and is important for maintaining mechanical stability of the knee. MCL injuries are common and mostly occur after an impact to the outside of the knee area, whilst the foot is in a fixed position. Injuries can range from small tears to complete ruptures and are graded from 1 to 3 depending on the severity.
The meniscus is a type of cartilage in the knee joint and has two parts – medial (inner) and lateral (outer). It plays an important role in congruency and absorbing forces within the knee joint. Injuries can either be traumatic (e.g. sporting injury) or degenerative (e.g. osteoarthritis) in nature, and the most common mechanism of injury is a twisting injury on a semi-flexed limb through a weight bearing knee.
This is a broad term used for pain arising from the knee cap (patella) or from the adjacent soft tissues. It is more common in people that participate in running, jumping and squatting sports. It is mostly multifactorial and is often due to overuse/overload, biomechanical imbalances and dysfunction around the knee and other joints of the lower limb and pelvis.
Osteoarthritis (OA) of the knee is a degenerative joint disease that is mostly as a result of wear and tear and progressive loss of joint cartilage. In some cases there is no apparent underlying cause, and in others it may be due to excessive loads and forces placed on the knee. Common symptoms include gradual onset of pain that worsens with activity; knee stiffness and swelling; pain after a long period of rest or sitting; and joint crepitus (cracking and grinding noises).
This is pain in the front of the knee, and is characterised by the pain being at the bottom part of the knee cap (patella). Pain is worsened with loading activities that increase the demand of the quadriceps muscles (e.g. basketball, volleyball, tennis, football) and is primarily a condition of relatively young athletes (15 – 30 years old).
The hamstring muscles are a group of large muscles located at the back of the thigh. Hamstring strains are caused by a rapid excessive contraction or an extremely forceful stretch to the muscles. This results in varying degrees of rupture within the fibres of the muscle and tendon unit. Injuries are common in dynamic sports that involve sprinting, jumping and contact, such as rugby and football, and in recreational sports such as waterskiing.
Biceps tendinopathy describes pain and tenderness in the region of the biceps tendon at the front of the shoulder. The area where the biceps muscle and tendon meet is particularly vulnerable to overuse injuries, especially in individuals performing heavy lifting activities. It is rarely seen in isolation and often coexists with other pathologies of the shoulder such as rotator cuff injuries, and shoulder imbalances and instabilities.
Better described as Lateral Epicondylitis or Lateral Elbow Tendinopathy, it is considered the most common overuse injury of the elbow and is only linked to playing tennis in 5% of people that experience it. The primary cause is due to overloading forces that chronically stress the extensor muscles and tendons of the forearm causing tenderness just below the elbow on the outside. It may be caused by repetitive activities such as computer use, screwdriver use, heavy lifting, as well as racquet and throwing sports.
Medial Epicondyle Tendinopathy or “Golfers Elbow” is a tendinous overload injury involving the wrist flexor muscles. Pain is usually felt just below the inside part of the elbow, and can refer down the forearm to the wrist, occasionally into the fingers, sometimes affecting grip strength. The pathology is often seen in overhead throwing sports such as baseball, tennis, weightlifting, and occupations such as carpentry and plumbing.
This condition is characterized by a localised swelling at the back of the elbow, which is due to inflammation of the elbow bursa (a fluid filled sac that reduces friction between the elbow bone and overlying skin). This injury may be caused by direct trauma to the back of the elbow, or due to repetitive microtrauma, like constantly rubbing the elbow against a table during writing.
Pain in your jaw joint area and the muscle that control jaw movements. Symptoms can also include headaches, general jaw pain and teeth grinding.
A herniated disc is a common cause of neck pain. It is often referred to as a “slipped disc”. Pain from a herniated disc can radiate down the shoulder and arm with sensations of numbness and tingling.
Neck pain is common and can exist because of physical strain, poor posture, osteoarthritis, disc degeneration and other spinal conditions. The neck pain generally worsens when moving the neck and normal range of motion is limited.
It is a pain in the head or the face that can be described as a pressure that is throbbing, constant, sharp or dull. Headaches can differ in location and severity and can exist for a variety of reasons.
Also known as cervical spondylosis is a condition that occurs as the bones, discs, and the joints in the neck wear down with aging. It usually occurs in middle- aged to elderly people.
Vertigo on its own is not a disease but rather a symptom of varying conditions. It is the sensation that you, or the environment around you, is moving and spinning. It often feels similar to motion sickness. Peripheral vertigo is caused by a problem with your inner ear. Central vertigo is when there is an issue with the brain caused by an infection, brain tumors, traumatic brain injury or a stroke.
A type of functional brain injury that changes the way the brain works. It is caused by a bump, blow, jolt or whiplash-type injury. The effects are normally temporary but can include headaches and problems with concentration, memory, balance and coordination.
A long-term degenerative disorder of the central nervous system that mainly affects the motor system. It causes uncontrollable shaking, stiffness and difficulty with balance and coordination.
A type of dementia that affects memory, thinking and behaviors. The symptoms develop gradually over many years and eventually become more severe.
Is a developmental disability that affects a persons muscle tone, movement and maintain balance and posture. It is the most common motor disability in childhood.
A stroke occurs when a blood vessel in the brain ruptures or bleeds, or when there is a blockage in the blood supply to the brain. A stroke can be fatal and the recovery and lasting effects of a stroke can differ greatly from one patient to another.
A result of damage to the nerves located outside of the brain and spinal cord (the peripheral nerves), often causes weakness, numbness and pain, usually in the hands and feet and is often common in long-term diabetics.
We are dedicated to your recovery. Our team of experts at Optimal Clinic will help you understand and overcome any discomfort, from ache to injury, allowing you to quickly and safely return to pain-free life. Our multidisciplinary team works together to successfully treat a variety of conditions, from chronic pain to women's health issues. Our patients are the core of our philosophy and our sole mission is to get you back in your game, on your bike or simply just back on track quickly and effectively.
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