Thursday, 17 of January of 2019

Tag » Mayo Clinic

What Is That Bump On The Back Of My Wrist?




Photo Credit: Mayo Clinic

Have you ever had a small, round, fluid-filled lump develop on top of the wrist or at the base of your palm? These non-cancerous lumps are called ganglion cysts and they are very common. They can be a little as a pea or as large as a small tangerine. In addition to the hand and wrist, they can develop at the ankle and foot and at a finger joint.

Quite often ganglion cysts “appear and disappear” without concern and don’t require treatment. But sometimes they can become large enough to put pressure on the nerves, which can create pain, tingling and muscle weakness. They can also interfere with moving your wrist or simply be unsightly in appearance.

What can you do? The American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons suggests that the first step might be to take over-the-counter pain relievers and wear a wrist brace or splint to relieve discomfort. But if that option proves ineffective, there are two minimally invasive choices.

Needle aspiration involves inserting a small needle into the cyst to drain the fluid and reduce the pressure on the nerves.  The cyst and part of the joint capsule or tendon sheath can also be surgically removed. Both of these choices are good ones, but it’s important to know that even if the procedure is successful, unfortunately, ganglion cysts have a high rate of recurrence.

Who’s at risk for developing a ganglion cyst? The Mayo Clinic reports that although anyone can bet them, the cysts are more common in young women between the ages of 20 and 30, as well as in people who have osteoarthritis of the finger or wrist or who have had a joint or tendon injury.

For more information about hand conditions or other orthopedic-related concerns, call Dr. John Kagan at 239-936-6778 or go to

Could Bursitis Be The Cause of Your Hip, Knee or Elbow Pain?



shutterstock_111719057Just like cartilage acts as a cushion between two bones, small jelly-like sacs called bursa act as a cushion between bones and muscles. Irritation and inflammation of the bursa in the shoulder, elbow, hip, knee and heel is fairly common, but that doesn’t make bursitis any easier to tolerate.  

What causes bursitis? Typically, it result from repetitive movements that stress the joint. Think of carpenters sawing lumber, painters kneeling for a long time to pain a baseboard, gardeners weeding or trimming bushes, musicians strumming a guitar and athletes pitching or throwing a ball. All of these activities increase the risk for bursitis.

How do you know if you have bursitis? The American Academy of Orthopedic Surgery repots that for hip bursitis, the pain usually begins at the point of the hip and spreads to the outside of the thigh area. It may be worse at night if you sleep on the affected hip and can also be painful after long periods of walking, squatting or climbing stairs. 

Medications to control inflammation and discomfort can be helpful, as can cortisone injections. Although it’s not a commonly performed procedure, some doctors remove a chronically inflamed bursa through arthroscopic surgery.

The Mayo Clinic offers the following prevention tips:

  • When possible, avoid repetitive activities that worsen the discomfort.
  • Take frequent breaks when performing repetitive tasks.
  • Use a cushion to protect joints, such as knee pads and elbow pads.
  • Increase the gripping surface on tools by using gloves, grip tape, or other padding.
  • Use an oversized grip on golf clubs and a two-handed backhand in tennis.
  • Use two hands to hold heavy tools.
  • Don’t sit still for long periods.

To schedule a consultation with Dr. Kagan,  call 239-936-6778 or go to for more information on orthopedic-related concerns.

Don’t Let Your Golf Swing Limit Your Game: Tips For Avoiding Common Golf-Related Injuries



shutterstock_3009221It’s not a surprise that golfing is one of the most popular sports in Southwest Florida. Top quality courses designed by all the pros, ranging from Arnold Palmer to Tom Fazio, are easy to find and enjoyable to play.

Most people think of golf as a relatively low-impact sport. But a variety of factors can contribute to shoulder and rotator cuff pain, low back pain, and injuries to the hand, wrist and elbow.

According to the American Orthopaedic Society of Sports Medicine, one of the best steps you can take to reduce your risk of injury is to warm up slowly before stepping up to the tee. It’s also critical to follow proper body mechanics and learn good technique.  In addition, participating in regular exercise off the course can help you build core strength and keep muscles and joints more flexible.

The most injury prone aspect of golf is related to the swing and how you grip the club.  Avoid swing-related injuries with these suggestions from the Mayo Clinic.

Stand with feet shoulder-width apart, don’t strain your neck or back by hunching over the ball and distribute your weight equally on both feet.

Make sure your swing is smooth, easy and relaxed; don’t over-swing by trying to hit the ball too hard or too fast. Duffs, or hitting the ground during the swing, along with over-swinging and twisting the spine during the swing are very common – and a major reason for muscle and joint pain in the shoulders and back.

Shoulder and back injuries can also be related to lifting clubs out of the car, or carrying your bag improperly. Remember to use good body mechanics when lifting and carrying anything, including golf clubs.

Prevent grip injuries to the hand, wrist and elbow by selecting the correct club length and using a neutral rather than tight grip. Elbow pain is often related to overuse – don’t overdo it and strain the ligaments and joints. Like any sport, don’t play through pain or play too many days in a row without rest.

Minor aches and pains can be treated with cold or heat and topical creams, as well as over-the-counter anti-inflammatory medications.  If you have ongoing problems, consider taking lessons from a golf pro. But if you have serious muscle or joint pain, get an evaluation by an orthopedic specialist. For more information, go to or call 239-936-6778.

NBA Players At Risk For Torn Meniscus & Other Sports Injuries


Photograph: Bob Pearson/EPA

Photograph: Bob Pearson/EPA

Hardly a month goes by without news about a sports-related injury sidelining a professional athlete. In April, Russell Westbrook, a star point guard with the Oklahoma Thunder collided with a player from the Houston Rockets during the NBA playoffs, resulting in a torn meniscus that required surgery.

The same month, Danilo Gallinari of the Denver Nuggets tore his ACL when he landed awkwardly after going for a layup shot in a game against the Dallas Mavericks. And Danny Granger of the Indiana Pacers has had ongoing problems with patellar tendinitis that finally resulted surgery on his left knee in April.

Knee injuries plague athletes in all sports, not just basketball. But the demands of basketball, including high and long jumps, as well as the need to accelerate, stop and turn abruptly – and the risk of collisions put players at high risk. The American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons reports that the knee joint, which is the largest joint in the body, is one of the most easily damaged. Injuries typically fall into three categories – the ligaments that connect the knee joint to the bones of the legs are torn; the meniscus, the tough, rubbery cartilage that cushions the knee joint is ripped; or the kneecap is damaged.

For the average person who sustains a knee injury, a period of rest from the activity, medication and an injection may be all that is needed to alleviate the pain and mend the damage. But for professional athletes, who often repeatedly injury the same party of the body and may not give themselves adequate time for rehabilitation, a more aggressive course of treatment and surgery may required.

While the knee’s design can make it vulnerable to injury, so can muscle weakness and lack of flexibility, reports the Mayo Clinic. A fitness regimen that strengths the leg and pelvic muscles around the kneecap, hips and pelvis can help keep the knee joint more stable and balanced.

For more information about knee pain and treatment options, visit

Orthopedic Conditions Specific to Women




shutterstock_107013878 copyIn honor of Mother’s Day this Sunday, May 12, Dr. John Kagan and his staff join families everywhere in recognizing and appreciating the vital role mothers play in our lives. It’s also the perfect time to discuss the type of orthopedic injuries that women are more at risk for than men, primarily due to biomechanical and structural differences.

According to the American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons, studies show women have a greater tendency to develop ACL injuries, patellofemoral pain syndrome,  also called runner’s knee, as well as stress fractures. In addition, women are at higher risk for hip fractures with advancing age. Here’s an overview of each of these conditions.

The ACL is a rubber-band like connecting tissue that attaches the bone in the upper leg (the femur) with the bone in the lower leg (the tibia). The ACL stabilizes the knee. Women athletes tend to have more ACL injuries primarily because they put greater stress on their knee due to several factors – their knees more frequently  “turn in” toward the body than men; women tend to jump and run with the feet in a more rigid position; and they bend their knees less when jumping and landing.

Patellofemoral pain in the knee usually occurs at the front of the knee, with women complaining of burning or aching especially when bending, squatting, running or climbing stairs. Like ACL pain, this condition is also related to structural differences in women’s bodies, such as greater pelvis width and muscle imbalances or misalignment.

Stress fractures are usually related to overuse but may also be a consequence of poor bone density. The AAOS reports that a stress fracture occurs when the muscles become over-fatigued and transfer the stress to the bone, which can cause tiny cracks in the bone. Most stress fractures occur in the lower leg or foot. Athletic activities in which the foot continually strikes the ground, such as running, tennis, basketball and gymnastics place women at higher risk for stress fractures.

Hip fractures are a serious concern for the elderly, in particular women age 80 and over. According to the Mayo Clinic, menopause can accelerate bone loss, increasing the risk of weak, brittle bones. Muscle mass also decreases with.

The best prevention for sports injuries is to avoid overdoing it. If pain develops, take a break from the activity and ice the injury.  If pain persists, call the doctor for an evaluation to prevent chronic, long-term problems. Proper training and strengthening exercises can be beneficial in correcting imbalances.

To keep bones healthy no matter what your age, the best prevention is to stay active, eat a healthy diet and continue to exercise appropriately.

For more information about orthopedic-related injuries and the treatment options, go to 

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