Dennis C. Stephens, RMT, NMT, CST, LDT, VMT
Advanced Therapy Center

800 Bering, Ste 227
Houston TX 77057

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Shoulder, Arm and Hand Therapy 

Shoulder, Arm and Hand Therapy 

To better understand shoulder problems and injuries, you may want to review the anatomy and function of the shoulder. The shoulder is a ball-and-socket joint with three main bones: the upper arm bone (humerus), collarbone (clavicle
), and shoulder blade (scapula). These bones are held together by muscles, tendons, and ligaments. The shoulder joint has the greatest range of motion of any joint in the body. Because of this mobility, the shoulder is at risk for injury and problems. Theacromioclavicular (AC) joint, which lays over the top of the shoulder, is also at risk for injury.

Obivously shoulder tightness and pain will relate to arm problems and usually hand and finger problems as listed below:

Finger, Hand & Wrist Pain

Everyone has had a minor finger, hand or wrist injury that causes pain or swelling at one time or another.  Most of the time our body movements do not cause problems but it is not surprising symptoms devleop from everyday wear and tear overuse or an injury.
Finger, Hand or wrist injuries and pain most commonly occur during:
*Sports or recreational activities.
*Work related tasks.
*Work or projects around the home.
*Accidental fails

The risk of finger, hand or wrist injury and pain is higher in the contact sports such as wrestiling, football, or soccer.  Sprots that require wieght bearing on the hands and arms increase the risk of injury and pain.

The Advanced Massage Therapy approach to the pain and discomfort finger hand & wrist are finding the cause of the problem and associated muscles or legiments that are contributing to the condition.  Usually the reason unless a specific injury, are stress, improper posture, sleeping  or working habits that inflame areas of pain.  After discovery is completed then proper combination of therapy will be applied as needed.  The recommended therapies for finger, hand and wrist are NeuroMuscular, CranioSacral & Lymphatic.

Carpal Tunnel Syndrome

Some people might think hat corpal tunnel syndrome is a conditon of the information technologh age, born from long hours of computer keyboarding.  But carpal tunnel syndrome is nothing new.  Evidence of people experiencing symtoms of carpal tunnel syndrome ocurs in medical records datingback to the beginning of the 20th century.

Bounded by bones and ligaments, the carpal tunnel is a narrow passgeway, about as big as you tunb, on the palm side of the wrist.  This tunnel protects a main nerve ( Median nerve) to you and and nime tendons that bend you fingers.  Prssure placd ont ehnerve roduces the numbness, ain and evetually hand weakness that characterize carpal tunnel syndrome.

Fortunately, for most people who develop carpal tunnel syndrome, proper treatment usually can relivev the pain and numbness and restor normal use of the wrists and hands.

Carpal Tunnel Syndrome -  Symptoms

Carpal tunnel syndrome typically statts gradually, with a vague aching in you wrist that can extend to your hand or forearm.  Other common sighns and symptoms include:

*Tingling or numbness in your fingers or hand, especially your thumb, index, middle or ring finger, but not your little finger.  This sensation often occurs while driving a vehicle or holding a phone or a newspaper, or upon awakening.

*Pain radiating or extending from your wrist up your arm to your shoulder or down into your palm or fingers, especially after forceful or repetitive use.  This usually occurs on the front (palm) side of your forearm.

*A sense of weakness in your hands and a tendency to drop objects.

*A constaant loss of feelings in some fingers.  This can occur in the conditon is advanced.

Carpal Tunnel - Causes

the casue of carpal tunnel syndrome is  pressure put on the median nerve.  The medain nerve is  mixed nerve, meaning it has a senory function and also provides nerve signals to move your muscles. (motor function).  The median nerve provides  sensatin to your thumb, index finger middle finger and the middle side of the ring finger.  Pressure on the nerve can stem from anything that reduces the space for it in the carpal tunnel.  Causes might include anything from bone spurs to the most common cause, which is swelling or thickening of the lining and lubrication layer (synovium) of the tendons in you carpal tunnel.

The exact cause of the swelling usually is not known, but a variety of conditions and factors can paly a role.  Some examples include rheumatoid arthritis, certain hormaonal disorders, such as diabetis thyroid disorders and menopause, fluid retension dut to pregnancy, or deopsitis of amyloid, and admormal protein produced by cells in you bone  marrow. 

Repetitive flexing and extending of the tendons in the hands and wrists, particular hen done forcefully and for prolonged periods with rest, also can increase prssure within the carpal tunnel. Injury to you wrist can cause swelling that exerts pressure on the median nerve.

Physical characteristics also may play a role. It may be that your carpal tunnel is more narrow than average.  Carpal tunnel syndrome my be associated with people who have square wristis, where the width and thickness are about the same, versus the more common rectangular wirist, other less common causes include generalized nerve problem or pressure on the median nuerve at more than one location. 

Carpal Tunnel Syndrome Treatment

This conditioncan often be treated by avoiding activities that irritate the wrist, applying ice, wearing a night splint and taking antiinflammatory medications.  Avoiding caffeine, alchol and tabacco, strengthening the arms and shoulders and increasing intake of vitamin B6 may also help. Best to have therapy that stretch the muscles and tendons, and which increases the flow of lymphic fluids away from the inflammed area of the carpal tunnel.

The Advanced Massage Therapy will provide therapies and relaxaniques which help with chronic pain that occurs with muscles and joints.  Providing posture and weight distribution techniques designed for strengthening, stretching and balancing the upper body, shoulders, neck, arm and fingers.  AMTC is decicated to enable you body to return to its greatest level of performance.


Tendonitis is inflammation or irritation of a tendon — any one of the thick fibrous cords that attach muscles to bone. The condition, which causes pain and tenderness just outside a joint, is most common around your shoulders, elbows and knees. But it can also occur in your hips and wrists.

Some common names for tendonitis are tennis elbow, golfer's elbow, pitcher's shoulder, swimmer's shoulder and jumper's knee.

If tendonitis is severe and leads to the rupture of a tendon, you may need surgical repair. This is especially true if the rupture is in the Achilles tendon, the tendon just above the heel. But many times, rest and medications to reduce pain and inflammation may be the only treatments you need. You can also take simple preventive measures to reduce your chance of developing tendonitis or to keep it from affecting your normal range of motion in joints such as your shoulder.

Tendonitis – Symptoms

Tendinitis produces the following symptoms near a joint that is aggravated by movement:

  • Pain
  • Tenderness
  • Stiffness
  • Tendonitis in various locations in your body produces these specific types of pain:

    Tennis elbow
    This type causes pain on the outer side of your forearm near your elbow when you rotate your forearm or grip an object.

    Achilles tendonitis
    This form causes pain just above your heel.

    Adductor tendonitis
    This type leads to pain in your groin.

    Patellar tendonitis
    In this type, you experience pain just below your kneecap

    Biceps tendonitis
    This form leads to shoulder pain.

    If the sheath of tissue that surrounds the tendon becomes scarred and narrowed, it may cause the tendon to lock in one position, such as in the condition called trigger finger. The pain of tendonitis is usually worse with activities that use the muscle that is attached to the involved tendon.

    Tendonitis – Prevention
    To reduce your chance of developing tendonitis, follow these suggestions:

    Ease up
    Avoid activities that place excessive stress on your tendons, especially for prolonged periods. For example, long or intense periods of uphill running can contribute to Achilles tendinitis. If you notice pain during a particular exercise, stop and rest.

    Mix it up
    If one exercise or activity causes you a particular, persistent pain, try something else. Cross-training can help you mix up an impact-loading exercise, such as running, with lower-impact exercise, such as biking or swimming.

    Improve your technique
    If your technique in an activity or exercise is flawed, you could be setting yourself up for problems with your tendons. Consider taking lessons or getting professional instructions when starting a new sport or using exercise equipment.

    Stretch first
    Before you exercise, take time to stretch
    Use proper workplace ergonomics. At your workplace, get a proper ergonomic assessment. Fitting your workspace to your body is essential to ensure that no tendons are continually stressed or overloaded.

    To avoid a recurrence of tendonitis, warm up before exercising and cool down afterward. Strengthening exercises also may help prevent further episodes of tendonitis.

    The Advanced Massage Therapy Center is dedicated to enable your body to return to its greatest level of performance. Our massage therapy sessions provide maximum results without the use of medication and or surgery; we strive in our massage therapy sessions to strengthen your body.

    Frozen Shoulder

    What is frozen shoulder?

    Frozen shoulder (adhesive capsulitis) is stiffness, pain, and limited range of movement in your shoulder that may follow an injury. The tissues around the joint stiffen, scar tissue forms, and shoulder movements become difficult and painful.

    What causes frozen shoulder?

    Frozen shoulder can develop when you stop using the joint normally because of pain, injury, or a chronic health condition, such as diabetes or arthritis. Any shoulder problem can lead to frozen shoulder if you do not work to maintain full range of motion. 

    Adanced Massage Therapy Center frozen shoulder is a speciality.  Many reasons can cause frozen shoulder as stated.  The solutions are to have all muscles in the shoulder and back released using Neuromuscluar therapy and gradually restore range of motion stretches.  Stablization  of nerve packages with CranioSacral will expedite the healing process.  The frozen shoulder process of therapies will usually require serveral times weekly depending on the serverity of the problem.  In most case therapy has proven very successful in range of motion restration and pain subsiding