Dr. Jon Gatten Chiropractic Clinic

Specific Conditions Treated

The following is a common list of conditions that have been seen and treated at this clinic as examples of types of care delivered.  A brief description of the symptoms is outlined for each.  

Acute low back pain:  A low back problem often originating from the joints of the back. This condition involves varying degrees of muscle spasm as guarding of the injured spinal joint.  Inflammation is often present, but is not the primary cause of the pain.  Subsequently, little relief is derived from only anti-inflammatory medication.  Joint involvement means that only limited relief comes with muscle relaxant medication.  Cryotherapy (ice pack applications to the low back region limited to 10 minutes exposure, 2-3 applications per day) offers relief without the side effects of NSAIDS/muscle relaxants. 

Chronic Low Back Pain:  Radiographic and clinical evidence of degenerative changes to the joints and soft tissue elements of the lumbar spine and/or pelvis.  Morning stiffness or aggravation of symptoms with sitting/rest and changing position are typically noted.  Increasing difficulty with walking, and aggravation of symptoms on attempts to exercise are also common symptoms. 

Pelvic and hip pain:  Soft tissue irritation such as tendonitis or bursitis with both localized pain and referred pain to back and thigh regions.  Therapy utilizes cryotherapy, ultrasound and electrotherapy for pain management and inflammation reduction.  Appropriate stretches and exercises are recommended as part of recovery.  Back pain and sacroiliac components are addressed with SMT.

Knee pain:  Capsulitis is addressed with specific mobilization techniques, cryotherapy and electrotherapy to reduce muscle irritation/involvement.  Variations include Osgoode-Schlatter's Syndrome, popliteal bursitis (Baker's Cyst), and patello-femoral syndrome.  Stabilization-type knee bracing is prescribed for unstable ligamentous disorders. 

Leg pain:  Compartment syndrome disorders are addressed with electrotherapy and cryotherapy management.  Dorsal night splints are prescribed for plantar fasciitis treatment.  Ankle joint mobilization techniques are used for management of most leg pain disorders.  The use of ankle bracing devices such as Aircast ankle splints are prescribed for unstable ligamentous disorders.  Leg pain as a result of biomechanical disorders of the foot and ankle are addressed with the use of custom-made prescription orthotics.  Our podiatric-style laboratory can make custom sandal footwear as well as custom design sport application orthotics for optimal athletic performance.Moderate to severe Restless Legs Syndrome (RLS) symptoms are addressed with cryotherapy and compression supports.  Severe RLS symptoms can be co-ordinated with a patient's physician for appropriate pharmaceutical management in conjunction with physical therapeutic means.  Portable TENS* (transdermal electrical nerve stimulation) devices can be prescribed for prolonged periods of sitting (ie. Long trips, lecture and class use) with effectiveness, as they can imitate the sensation of movement to reduce RLS symptoms. 

*TENS units are also prescribed for management of sciatica and chronic low back pain as a treatment option.

Shoulder pain:  Rotator cuff injuries are treated with cryotherapy and ultrasound.  Manipulation and mobilization techniques are administered to the shoulder joint when ranges of motion are compromised/limited.  Rib cage involvement (subscapular) is addressed with SMT and electrotherapy, when appropriate.

Wrist pain:  Carpal tunnel disorders are treated with carpal mobilization techniques of the wrist bones, especially where joint movement has become altered or lost.  Wrist splints are prescribed to reduce positional strain, especially at rest.  Stretching and mobilization exercises are prescribed to maintain movement and reduce swelling.  

Neck pain:  Whiplash Associated Disorders are classified in degrees of severity from (WAD) I to IV.  Treatment includes cryotherapy, traction techniques and soft tissue mobilization techniques to improve ranges of motion and reduce soft tissue and joint based pain. SMT is utilized for joint based cervical disorders and strains when appropriate.  The upper neck and temporomandibular joint (TMJ) complex is assessed when appropriate.  Jaw joint pain can be assessed for capsular injury or stiffness affecting movement. 

Tennis elbow:  Lateral epicondylitis is treated with ultrasound therapy and cryotherapy.  Appropriate elbow bracing is prescribed when necessary.  Referred pain to the forearm region is treated with electrotherapy to the involved region. 

Whiplash injuries:  Neck pain and stiffness, usually with some form of muscular headache, occasionally with pain into the shoulder, arm or forearm area (from nerve involvement), and graded as Type I, II, III, or IV, depending on the severity.  Treatment involves SMT, cryotherapy, ultrasound, electrotherapy to muscle of the upper back and shoulder regions, rehabilitative stretches and strength recovery programs. 

Costovertebral strain:  Pain involving the shoulder girdle, arm, and occasionally into the forearm and hand, often with a "numbness" or "tingling" sensation, that often changes or improves with shoulder and arm positioning. Neck pain may be present, but usually there is no neck stiffness present.  Intense pain may be felt between the shoulder blades, often more to one side.  There is difficulty in sleep positioning due to the rib cage pain.  This is a common diagnosis for patients who have just been to the ER for emergency examination for possible cardiac involvement but whose ECG and blood work was found to be normal. 

Note: The ER is the first and best place to be with any presenting symptoms of chest pain.  Never assume chest pain is anything other than heart originating, and should be assessed as soon as possible at your closest hospital ER or call 911.