Muscle Pain, Trigger Points and Chiropractic
A report on the scientific literature
Mark Studin DC, FASBE (C), DAAPM, DAAMLP
"Myofascial pain syndrome is a chronic form of muscle pain. The pain of myofascial pain syndrome centers around sensitive points in your muscles called trigger points. The trigger points can be painful when touched and the pain can spread throughout the affected muscle" (Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research, 2009, http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/myofascial-pain-syndrome/ds01042)
Nearly everyone experiences muscle pain from time to time that generally resolves in a few days. But people with myofascial pain syndrome have muscle pain that persists or worsens. Myofascial pain caused by trigger points has been linked to many types of pain, including headaches, jaw pain, neck pain, low back pain, pelvic pain, and arm and leg pain" (Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research, 2009, http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/myofascial-pain-syndrome/ds01042).
"MPS may be related to a closer-studied complex condition known as fibromyalgia. By accepted definition, the pain of fibromyalgia is generalized, occurring above and below the waist and on both sides of the body. On the other hand, myofascial pain is more often described as occurring in a more limited area of the body, for example, only around the shoulder and neck, and on only one side of the body.
Neither MPS nor fibromyalgia is thought to be an inflammatory or degenerative condition, and the best evidence suggests that the problem is one of an altered pain threshold, with more pain reported for a given amount of painful stimuli. This altered pain threshold can be manifest as increased muscle tenderness, especially in the certain areas, e.g., the trapezius muscle. These syndromes tend to occur more often in women than in men, and the pain may be associated with fatigue and sleep disturbances" (Wikipedia, 2010, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Myofascial_pain_syndrome).
In 2009, a comprehensive study by Vernon & Schneider reported that manual-type therapies (chiropractic care) have acceptable evidentiary support in the treatment of myofascial pain syndrome and myofascial trigger points. This study along with many others concludes that a drug-free approach of chiropractic care is one of the best solutions for myofacial pain syndrome. To find a qualified doctor of chiropractic near you go to the US Chiropractic Directory at www.uschirodirectory.comand search your state.
1. Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research. (2009, December). Mayofacial pain syndrome. Retrieved from http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/myofascial-pain-syndrome/ds01042