Chronic muscle pain can cause significant difficulty in your day-to-day life. Certain motions can become painful, and you may struggle to stand, sit, or bend over due to the pain. Massage and stretching may bring brief relief, but the pain soon returns. Here’s what you should know about trigger points and their role in chronic pain.
What Are Trigger Points?
The cause of trigger points is still unknown, but these nodules of hypersensitive muscle can cause some serious pain. Often, these trigger points are called “knots,” and they can feel like a small knot or hard spot in your muscle.
Key Signs of Trigger Points:
- The pain is related to a specific, marble-sized point in the skeletal muscle or fascia (fibrous connective tissue between the skin and muscles), but is not related to acute localized trauma, inflammation, degeneration, abnormal growths, or infection.
- The painful point is distinct to the touch and feels like a nodule or band in the affected muscle.
- Stimulation of a trigger point may cause a twitch response.
- Manual palpation (pressing or rubbing) of a trigger point can cause pain, which typically radiates in a specific distribution pattern. This can indicate which muscles are affected.
- The pain cannot be explained by orthopedic or neurological causes.
Trigger points may feel like your muscle is tied into knots, which isn’t quite what is happening. A widely held theory of trigger points is that they are caused by a small patch of tightly contracted muscle, like a Charlie horse that only affects a few square inches of muscle. These spasms may be choking off the blood supply to the involved muscle, which can cause greater irritation. Because of the cycle of irritation, trigger points can easily become a chronic issue.
Trigger points are a natural part of muscle tissue and can cause direct pain. At some point, most people will experience a muscle knot. They may eventually resolve themselves, or they may continue to cause pain and irritation for years. They can also complicate other injuries, which can make pain from an injury become chronic. Additionally, trigger points can mimic other pains, making them difficult to diagnose and treat.
Get Help from Our Orlando Pain Management Center – (888) 832-3597
Chronic pain can diminish the quality of your life, but it doesn’t have to. At Pain Medicine Group, we are committed to finding solutions for your pain issues, and our world-class Orlando pain management center uses innovative and unique treatments. Schedule an appointment today to develop your customized treatment plan, and learn how you can live your life without pain.
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