Pain Management & Rehabilitation:
Myofascial Pain Syndrome and Fibromyalgia
David G. Simons, MD, co-author of the Simons, Travell, and Simons Trigger Point Manual, has stated that “since no medical specialty claims skeletal muscle as their organ, it is often overlooked.” Indeed, several studies have confirmed that myofascial pain is one of the most commonly ignored causes of persistent pain. Many of our patients report that previous physicians and other healthcare providers rarely have included the detailed and specific muscle examination that is common at Pain and Rehabilitation Medicine. The hallmark feature of myofascial pain syndrome is a so-called “trigger point,” which can be responsible for prolonged pain and dysfunction. A common characteristic of trigger points is referred pain, which may confuse those clinicians who are not familiar with common referred pain patterns. Dr. Janet Travell, MD, perhaps best known as President Kennedy’s White House physician, has mapped out the referred pain patterns of most skeletal muscles.
Although trigger points and myofascial pain are poorly recognized worldwide, there is a growing number of scientific studies that confirm that trigger points are indeed a very common source of pain and dysfunction. Clinicians at Pain and Rehabilitation Medicine are very involved with researchers and clinicians worldwide and are among the world’s top-specialists in myofascial pain syndrome. Through our renowned post-graduate continuing education program, the Janet G. Travell, MD Seminar Series, we teach other healthcare providers the unique approach to identifying and treating myofascial trigger points. For more information about myofascial pain and trigger points, please check out the patient and professional resource pages.
Patients diagnosed with fibromyalgia can benefit tremendously from the comprehensive approach at Pain and Rehabilitation Medicine. Where other clinicians may consider a diagnosis of fibromyalgia a final diagnosis, at Pain and Rehabilitation Medicine we consider this diagnosis a starting point. Through detailed questionnaires and medical evaluations, physicians at Pain and Rehabilitation Medicine make every effort to find out why patients have all the symptoms of fibromyalgia. We have been able to help many patients diagnosed with fibromyalgia by identifying and eliminating the cause of their pain and other symptoms. Dr. Robert Gerwin and physical therapist Jan Dommerholt have published their experiences and points of view in many medical journals and text books.
Download and read a related article on Myofascial Pain (pdf file) »