Living with Osteoporosis?

Posted on : 06-30-2014 | By : tsimons | In : Bone Health, Events, Health Tips, screening

According to the National Osteoporosis Foundation (NOF), about 54 million Americans have osteoporosis and low bone mass, placing them at increased risk for osteoporosis. Studies suggest that approximately one in two women and up to one in four men age 50 and older will break a bone due to osteoporosis.  To help understand the causes and treatments of osteoporosis, Silver Cross Hospital is offering a free program in July.

Girl Talk: Stop Osteoporosis

Find out if you maybe at risk for osteoporosis. Join Dr. Latha Arla, internal medicine physician, on Wednesday, July 16 for a discussion on the risks, signs, testing and treatments for this crippling disease. Complimentary osteoporosis heel screenings will be offered to participants beginning at 5:30 p.m. This free program will be held from 6:30 to 7:30 p.m. in the Silver Cross Hospital Conference Center, Pavilion A, 1890 Silver Cross Blvd., New Lenox.  Call 1-888-660-HEAL (4325) or visit www.silvercross.org to register.

“Even though there is no cure for osteoporosis, there are steps you can take to prevent or slow the progression of the disease,” said Dr. Latha Arla, internal medicine physician who is on-staff at Silver Cross Hospital. “In fact, you may even be able to improve bone density. During this program, all of these treatment options will be discussed.”

What causes Osteoporosis?

According to the NOF, osteoporosis is a disease of the bones. It happens when you lose too much bone, make too little bone or both. As a result, your bones become weak and may crack from a minor fall or, in serious cases, even from simple actions, like bumping into furniture.

Osteoporosis means “porous bone.” If you look at healthy bone under a microscope, you will see that parts of it look like a honeycomb. If you have osteoporosis, the holes and spaces in the honeycomb are much bigger than they are in healthy bone. This means your bones have lost density or mass and that the structure of your bone tissue has become abnormal. As your bones become less dense, they also become weaker and more likely to break. If you’re age 50 or older and have broken a bone, talk to your doctor and ask if you should have a bone density test.

Texting & Tweeting Giving you Thumb Pain?

Posted on : 05-15-2014 | By : tsimons | In : Bone Health, Events, Health Tips, News, Rehabilitation

RIC at Silver Cross offers free treatment strategies for sore thumbs on May 19

Is all of that texting and tweeting causing pain in your thumb?  The health of your thumb is important as it is the only digit we can oppose with when grasping items. Rarely do we handle items with the four fingers alone. Whether it is DeQuervain’s Tenosynovitis, Basal Joint Arthritis, or Trigger Thumb, it deserves special attention.

“Generally the first joint in the hand to become arthritic is a joint at the base of the thumb,” reports Barbara Shoemaker, occupational therapist and certified hand Therapist with The Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago (RIC) at Silver Cross Hospital. “In a normal thumb joint, cartilage covers the ends of the bones and acts as a shock absorber to allow smooth, pain free movements. When this cartilage wears out, the bones rub against one another and may result in pain.”

Join Barbara Shoemaker and Ashlie Broadhurst, occupational therapists with RIC at Silver Cross,  on Monday, May 19 at 6:30 in the Silver Cross Hospital Conference Center, 1890 Silver Cross Blvd., Pavilion A, New Lenox, to learn about the common causes of thumb pain and strategies to enhance function.

To register to attend, click here or call 1-888-660-HEAL (4325)

Causes and Treatments of Thumb Pain

The overuse, arthritic conditions and joint instability can cause soreness in your thumb.  Previous injury and disease can also be a part of this painful problem. Thumb pain can be aggravated by activities that require pinching such as turning a key, opening jars and writing. Treating a sore thumb initially starts with rest. Wearing a splint to rest the thumb is ideal because it keeps the thumb from constantly being used and potentially worsening it. For the swelling that may accompany your thumb, cooling packs and anti-inflammatory medications can reduce swelling. Remember, cooling packs should be used for 10 to 15 minutes at a time and if reapplication is needed, you should wait until the affected area reaches room temperature again before reapplying. If treated early, very specific, gentle exercises supervised by an occupational therapist can help reduce the pain. Cortisone shots applied directly to the joint can also relieve pain for a short while.

Stop Limping and Start Living!

Posted on : 05-14-2014 | By : tsimons | In : Bone Health, Events, Health Tips, News, Rehabilitation, screening

Silver Cross Hospital Hosts free program on relief from knee pain on June 4

Are you tired of walking with a limp due to severe knee pain? If so, you are not alone because more than one-third of Americans report being affected by knee pain. Sometimes knee pain may be the result of an injury, too much weight on the knee joint, or arthritis.

If you are experiencing severe knee pain, join Dr. Paul Trksak, orthopedic surgeon, to learn how to put your knees back in commission by reducing pain and restoring function! Learn about the latest options for the treatment of knee pain and partial knee replacement. This free Knee Pain lecture will be held on Wednesday, June 4 in the Silver Cross Hospital Conference Center, 1890 Silver Cross Blvd., Pavilion A, New Lenox at 6:30 p.m.  All participants will receive a GIFT BAG which includes a complimentary joint and back screening performed by a physical medicine and rehabilitation physician from The Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago at Silver Cross, and other items to help you stay active ($125 Value).

Register to attend online or call 1-888-660-HEAL (4325).

“Arthritis is one of the most common causes of knee pain. And, many patients only have severe arthritis on one side of their knee,” said Dr. Paul Trksak, orthopedic surgeon on staff at Silver Cross Hospital. “One treatment for the relief of this pain is a partial knee replacement, which addresses the problem by removing only the bad tissue on one side, and saving the healthy joint tissue on the other side.”

What is Partial Knee Replacement?

Unlike a total knee replacement, partial knee replacement surgery only replaces one side of the joint, and not the entire joint.  This method is less invasive and allows the physician to make a smaller incision.  There is less bone loss, and the procedure preserves all of the ligaments and the cartilage on the opposite side of the knee.

Dr. Paul Trksak, orthopedic surgeon

There are many benefits to partial knee replacement surgery.  “This procedure allows for a more normal feeling knee and a higher level of function, and most patients can quickly resume regular activities,” said Dr. Trksak.  “Most importantly, after partial knee replacement surgery, patients experience significant pain relief.”

Trksak suggests various treatment options to his patients based on their lifestyle and needs, however he doesn’t push them because he wants them to be comfortable with their choice.

To be successful, patients need to incorporate exercise to improve their range of motion and strength.  With this surgery, patients can generally achieve greater range of motion, and their recovery is often half the time compared to total knee replacement.

Find relief for Back and Leg Pain

Posted on : 04-30-2014 | By : tsimons | In : Bone Health, Events, Health Tips, News, Rehabilitation

According to the National Institute of Health Statistics, Americans most commonly suffer from chronic back pain. Unfortunately chronic back pain not only is felt in the lower back, but can also extend into the legs. A number of injuries or spinal conditions like, lumbar spinal stenosis, can trigger chronic back and leg pain. To help understand the causes and treatments of this type of pain, Silver Cross Hospital is offering a free program in May.

Join Dr. Thomas Hurley, neurosurgeon, to learn about new non-surgical and minimally invasive treatments available to relieve back and leg pain and treat lumbar spinal stenosis. This free lecture – Leg & Back Pain - will be held on Tuesday, May 13 in the Silver Cross Hospital Conference Center, 1890 Silver Cross Blvd., Pavilion A, New Lenox at 6:30 p.m.  All participants will receive a GIFT BAG which includes a complimentary joint and back screening performed by a physical medicine and rehabilitation physician from the Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago at Silver Cross, and other items to help you stay active ($125 Value). Register to attend here or call 1-888-660-HEAL (4325).

Symptoms of Back and Leg Pain

Symptoms of chronic back and leg pain can range from mildly uncomfortable to totally disabling.  You may have chronic pain if your pain has lasted more than 6 months. When you suffer from back and leg pain, you may feel a sharp pain, or a dull ache; and affected areas may feel tender and the pain may increase with movement.

“A common cause of back and leg pain is a condition known as spinal stenosis,” said Dr. Thomas Hurley, neurosurgeon, who is on staff at Silver Cross Hospital. “Spinal stenosis is a narrowing of the spinal canal causing pressure on the spinal cord and/or nerves. These changes might create minor aches in some patients, although in more severe cases, the pain can significantly impact a person’s quality of life. So to avoid the pain from getting worse, patients need to seek medical attention.”

How Spinal Stenosis is Treated

Spinal stenosis can be treated several ways. Treatment options include:

  • Changes in posture. People with spinal stenosis may find that flexing the spine by leaning forward while walking relieves their symptoms.
  • Medications. Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory medications such as aspirin or ibuprofen may help relieve symptoms.
  • Rest. Rest, followed by a gradual resumption of activity, can help. Aerobic activity such as bicycling is often recommended.
  • Surgery. If other treatments do not ease the pain, surgery may be recommended to relieve the pressure on affected nerves.

“The best way to develop a treatment plan is to diagnose the severity of Spinal Stenosis. With so many innovative treatments available today, patients can learn the best options with a physician visit,” says Dr. Hurley.

Solutions for Non-Arthritic Hip Pain

Posted on : 04-29-2014 | By : tsimons | In : Bone Health, Events, News, Rehabilitation, screening

Has your active lifestyle of hiking and biking ceased to exist due to hip pain, but you think I’m too young to have arthritis? If you are like millions of Americans, arthritis may not be the cause of your aches. Whether you’re a weekend warrior or professional athlete, non-arthritic hip pain is a common problem, which can at times be disabling. To help understand the causes and treatments of non-arthritic hip pain, Silver Cross Hospital is offering a free program in May.

 Join Dr. Bradley Dworsky, orthopedic surgeon, to learn about causes of non-arthritic hip pain and less invasive treatment options including arthroscopy and joint preservation. This free Hip Pain lectire will be held on Tuesday, May 6 in the Silver Cross Hospital Conference Center at 6:30 p.m.  All participants will receive a GIFT BAG which includes a complimentary joint and back screening performed by a physician with the Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago at Silver Cross and other items to help you stay active ($125 Value). Register to attend online or call 1-888-660-HEAL (4325).

How the hip joint functions

The hip joint is designed to withstand repetitive motion and a reasonable amount of wear and tear. This ball-and-socket joint fits together in a way that allows for seamless movement. Whenever you use the hip (for example, by walking), a cushion of cartilage prevents friction as the hip bone moves in its socket.

“Even though the hip joint is sturdy, it isn’t unbreakable,” said Bradley Dworsky, M.D., orthopedic surgeon. “Over time and with age, the cartilage can wear down. Muscles and tendons in the hip can get injured, or the hip bone itself can be fractured during a fall. Any of these conditions can lead to hip pain.”

Some other non-arthritic conditions that are most likely to cause hip pain include:

Femoral-Acetabular Impingement (FAI) is a deformity of the hip joint that limits the joints normal range of motion. Though it can be caused by trauma to the hip or by the repetitive movements of certain athletic activities, FAI is typically caused by improper bone growth in either the femoral head or the socket in the hip joint. Since not all bodies are alike, slight variations in anatomy can leave some people predisposed to the condition. There are two types of FAI, Cam Impingement and Pincer Impingement. In many cases FAI is caused by a combination of both types. Treatment options to correct FAI include: Physical Therapy, Anti-Inflammatory Medicines, Injections Corticosteroid, Steroid and Analgesic Surgery.

In addition, a labral tear is another non-arthritic condition that can cause hip pain. A labral tear is a tearing of the labrum (a thick cuff of fibrous tissue that surrounds the hip socket). The labrum cushions the hip joint and provides a smooth surface for the head of the femur to glide within the socket. Minor labral tears may cause no symptoms while some tears can cause a locking or catching sensation in the joint during certain movements. A torn labrum can interfere with the normal range of motion in the hip joint.  Labral tears are typically caused by physical activity, especially activities with repetitive motion. They can also be caused by trauma to the hip or diseases that injure the bone or cartilate in the hip joint. Labral Tear treatment options include physical therapy, corticosteroid injections, anti-inflammatory medications and Arthroscopic surgery.

“The correct diagnosis is very important in determining appropriate treatment for non-arthritic hip pain. For this reason, it is vital to see an orthopedic specialist who is specially trained to evaluate such conditions,” said Dr. Dworsky.

Free Aches & Pains lecture series

Posted on : 04-15-2014 | By : tsimons | In : Bone Health, Events, News

Millions of Americans suffer from aches and pains daily. But at what level of distress should you seek help to find relief from your pain? Silver Cross Hospital is offering a lecture series titled Aches & Pains on determining when to seek help, and eliminating soreness in various areas of the body.

All participants will receive a GIFT BAG which includes a complimentary joint and back screening performed by a physical medicine and rehabilitation physician from the Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago at Silver Cross, and other items to help you stay active. ($125 Value).

All programs will take place from 6:30 to 7:30 p.m. in the Hospital’s Conference Center, 1890 Silver Cross Blvd., New Lenox.  Register to attend one or more programs online or call 1-888-660-HEAL (4325).

Leg & Back Pain
Tueday, May 13
Lumbar spinal stenosis is a common spinal problem associated with leg and back pain in people over age 50. Dr. Thomas Hurley, neurosurgeon, will discuss new non-surgical and minimally invasive treatments available to treat this condition.
 
Shoulder Pain
Tuesday, June 3
Feel out of joint? If you experience painful arthritis in the shoulder and have damage to the surrounding muscles, join Dr. Venkat Seshadri, orthopedic surgeon, to learn about a new procedure—Reverse Total Shoulder Arthroplasty.
 
Knee Pain
Wednesday, June 4
Stop limping. Join Dr. Paul Trksak, orthopedic surgeon, for a discussion on recent advances in total and partial knee replacement.

Free Osteoporosis, Anxiety and Balance Screenings

Posted on : 10-04-2013 | By : tsimons | In : Bone Health, Events, I Matter Benefits, Rehabilitation

Moans, Groans & Bones: Free Ladies’ Event

Posted on : 09-26-2013 | By : tsimons | In : Bone Health, Business Sponsors, Events, Health Tips, I Matter Benefits, News, Rehabilitation

As women age, they oftentimes encounter bouts of depression as well as an increase risk for osteoporosis. To help women find relief for these conditions, Silver Cross Hospital is offering a free event—Moans & Bones, on Tuesday, Oct. 15.

Join Dr. Priya Shastri, family practice physician on staff at Silver Cross Hospital, at 6:30 p.m. for an overview of depression and osteoporosis symptoms, prevention and treatment.  Beginning at 5:30 p.m., the Silver Cross Center for Women’s Health will offer free osteoporosis heel screenings. Women’s health therapists with The Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago at Silver Cross will provide complimentary fall and balance screenings. Blood pressure screenings and questionnaires assessing risk for mood and anxiety disorders will also be provided.  Each woman attending will receive an I Matter card for valuable discounts at over 50 local businesses and will be entered in a drawing to win a DEXA bone densitometry scan at the Silver Cross Center for Women’s Health.  Delicious vitamin-D rich refreshments will be served. This free event will be held in the Silver Cross Hospital Conference Center, Pavilion A, 1890 Silver Cross Blvd., New Lenox. 

Register to attend online or by calling 1-888-660-HEAL (4325). 

“During this program, women will learn beneficial information and tools that will help them deal with their depression and determine if they are at risk for osteoporosis,” said Dr. Shastri.

Create a Fall-Proof Plan

Posted on : 09-25-2013 | By : tsimons | In : Bone Health, Events, News, Rehabilitation

According to the National Council on Aging, every 15 seconds an older adult is seen in an emergency room for a fall-related injury. To help reduce preventable falls, The Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago at Silver Cross is offering FREE Fall and Balance screenings in October.

Individuals who have been experiencing dizziness or vertigo, have had a history of falls, near falls, or simply a fear of falling are excellent candidates for a balance screening.

 “Since falling is the leading cause of injury deaths among people over the age of 65 and the leading cause of doctor visits, hospital admissions, and emergency room visits, it is important to determine if you are at risk,” says Matthew Boebel, Administrative Director for the Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago at Silver Cross Hospital.

Appointments for FREE Fall and Balance screenings are available on:

The screening includes blood pressure readings, balance assessment, recommendations referrals for treatment if needed.  To schedule an appointment, call (815) 300-7110.

Free Fall Prevention Program

To help seniors maintain their independence and avoid future risk of falling, Dr. Thomas Lee, family practice physician, and the RIC therapists will host a free program titled A Delicate Balance on October 8 from 6:30 to 7:30 p.m. in the Silver Cross Hospital Conference Center, New Lenox. Families are invited to learn about what causes a fall or loss of balance, how to identify areas of weakness, how to safeguard the home and other helpful tips to avoid harmful falls. Free Fall & Balance Screenings will be available before and after the program. Register to attend at www.silvercross.org or by calling

1-888-660-HEAL (4325). 

Falls are especially dangerous for the elderly. The Center for Disease Control says more than one-third of adults 65 and older fall each year. And the consequences are great; seniors suffer from 360,000 to 480,000 fall-related fractures each year.

“Researchers say the risks of seniors falling are greater if they have lower body weakness, problems with walking and balance, or are taking four or more medications,” said Dr. Thomas Lee, family practice physician, at Silver Cross Hospital. “To reduce their risk, elderly people should get regular exercise to increase their lower body strength and improve balance.”

According to RIC at Silver Cross, there are numerous safety measures you can take to prevent slips and falls in your home:

  • Stairways should have handrails on both sides.
    • Attach safety treads to steps.
    • Remove tripping hazards such as throw rugs, furniture, and clutter from walkways.
    • Use self-adhesive non-skid mats or safety treads in bathtubs, showers, and pools.
    • Use non-skid rugs on bathroom floors.
    • Use non-skid pads under rugs on bare floors.
    • Install grab bars on both sides of toilets and bathtubs.

Alleviating Ankle Pain and Arthritis

Posted on : 04-30-2013 | By : tsimons | In : Bone Health, Events, Health Tips, News

Ankle arthritis can be caused by a prior injury, wear and tear, deformity or acute inflammatory conditions such as Rheumatoid arthritis or infection.  When an ankle is injured, it is susceptible to many debilitating conditions such as increased inflammation in the joint and arthritis. Infections of the ankle joint can cause damage to the cartilage cells, restricting the ability to regenerate and eventually causing permanent damage to the joint.  Genetic pre-disposition to arthritis is not well understood but affects some individuals uniquely, causing their joints to wear out faster than others.

Pain associated with ankle arthritis is one of the most frequent reasons patients seek medical treatment by an orthopaedic specialist.  “If you are experiencing severe ankle pain or restricted movement from arthritis in your ankle, you may be a candidate for an ankle replacement,” says Dr. Robyn Vargo, board certified orthopaedic surgeon on staff at Silver Cross Hospital. “Ankle joint replacement is one of the most successful treatment options for disabling ankle arthritis, as it helps to relieve pain, restore motion and get you back to enjoying normal, everyday activities.  Since its inception over 30 years ago, there have been tremendous advances made in this procedure.”

Similar to total hip or knee replacement total, Dr. Vargo says ankle replacement surgery removes the damaged cartilage joint and surrounding bone from the ankle joint and then filling the gap with artificial components that restore ankle motion.  After completing ankle replacement surgery and a structured rehabilitation program, patients are able to return to their daily activities pain free.

Learn More at Free Program May 7

If you suffer from debilitating ankle pain caused by arthritis or cartilage injury, join Dr. Robyn Vargo, orthopaedic surgeon with Hinsdale Orthopaedics, to learn about the benefits of total ankle replacement surgery. This free program will be held Tuesday, May 7, from 6:30 to 7:30 p.m. in the Silver Cross Hospital Conference Center, Pavilion A, 1890 Silver Cross Blvd., New Lenox. Click here to register to attend at or call 1-888-660-HEAL (4325).

Dr. Robyn Vargo is one of the only surgeons in the Chicago area to specialize in total ankle replacements. She spent two decades of her life dancing with many well known dance troupes including Joffrey II Ballet in New York City. Accordingly, she brings a wealth of personal knowledge to the treatment of dance injuries.  She received her medical degree from Ohio University College of Osteopathic Medicine in Athens, Ohio followed by an orthopedic surgery residency at Brentwood Hospital in Cleveland, Ohio and a fellowship in adult reconstructive surgery of the foot and ankle at Centennial Medical Center in Nashville, Tennessee.

Dr. Vargo is also a member of several professional societies, including the American Osteopathic Academy of Orthopaedics and the American Orthopaedic Foot and Ankle Society.