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November is Lung Cancer Awareness Month! During this month, it is important to educate yourself about the different types of lung cancer.

What is Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer?

Non-small cell lung cancer affects the cells lining the surface of the lung’s airways. Non-small cell lung cancers are usually slower growing than small cell lung cancers. The cells of a NSCLC tumor are typically larger in size.

Non-Small Cell Lung Cancers make up about 80% of all lung cancer cases.

Types of Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer

Adenocarcinoma– often start in the outer region of the lung, in glands that would normally secrete mucus to help you breathe. 

Squamous Cell Carcinoma– starts in the squamous cells, which are thin, flat cells that line the inside of the airways.

Large Cell Carcinoma– this type of lung cancer can occur anywhere in the lung and is usually aggressive.

Adenocarcinoma is the most common type of lung cancer. 

What is Small Cell Lung Cancer?

Like its name suggests, small cell lung cancer contains cells that are smaller in size. SCLC tends to grow and spread in the body quickly, but usually responds well to chemotherapy and radiation. Most people are diagnosed with SCLC when the disease has already spread.

Small Cell Lung Cancers are less common and only make up about 20% of all lung cancer cases.

Types of Small Cell Lung Cancer

Small Cell Carcinoma– The cells of a small cell carcinoma tumor look flat under a microscope. 

Combined Small Cell Carcinoma– is a tumor that’s made up of some small cell carcinoma cells and some non-small cell lung cancer cells.

Small Cell Carcinoma is the most common type of small cell lung cancer

Garden State Radiation Oncology offers treatment for lung cancer.

To contact Garden State Radiation Oncology, use the information below:

Phone: 732.240.0053

Website: gsradiationoncology.org


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In recent years, there has been a large rise of seniors enrolling in Medicare Advantage plans. These plans are private plans that are advertised as an alternative to “traditional” Medicare plans, but in reality, they are a get rich quick scheme for insurance companies. Medicare Advantage plan providers get more funding for “sicker patients” and this has led to a large number of doctors over diagnosing their patients.
 
Every year, the government loses around 12-25 billion dollars to these plans and doctors over diagnosing their patients. There have been reports that doctors were incentivized to over diagnose their patients with presents and champagne.
Unfortunately, over half of all Medicare enrollments are in these Medicare Advantage plans that thrive on trapping people and denying treatment. 80% of Medicare Advantage plans are for-profit and therefore benefit greatly from “sick” patients. These Medicare Advantage firms use deceptive advertising to make these plans seem favorable to seniors when in reality, seniors are denied many options when seeking help. A lot of doctors are considered “out of network” for patients with Medicare Advantage plans, which leaves them with insurmountable fees to pay and denied coverage.
These Medicare Advantage plans will often target younger seniors and promise them low rates while they are healthier. This leads to people believing that this plan will also be beneficial to them. In reality, as seniors become “sicker” they will have very few options with this healthcare plan. Medicare Open Enrollment began on October 15, and this is a great time to reevaluate your healthcare plan.

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Rock The Boat

‘Rock the Boat’ is a simple exercise. You can use a chair for support if needed. Begin the exercise by standing with your feet shoulder-width apart, with even weight on each side.

Make sure to stand up straight with your shoulders back and head looking forward.

Raise one foot off the ground, bring your leg up and hold for about 30 seconds. Repeat this exercise with the other leg. You can choose the amount of reps that feels comfortable for you.

Tightrope Walks

Tightrope walks can also help with your balance. Hold your arms out straight from your sides and walk in a straight line, pausing each time you lift a foot off the ground. Keep your eyes focused on a spot straight ahead of you. You can take around 15-20 steps along the “tightrope.”

Flamingo Stand

Flamingo stands are another good exercise. All that you have to do is stand on one leg. When you are standing on one leg, make sure to keep your eyes looking forward. Extend your leg behind you and hold the position for 10 to 15 seconds, and then repeat with your opposite leg. If you feel unsteady, stand next to a sturdy chair. You are going to want to be able to do this for 30-60 seconds.

Back Leg Raises

Back leg raises are similar to flamingo raises, but you do not bring your leg up as far. You should use a chair for balance. When doing this exercise, do not bend your knee or point your toes. The goal is to get your leg back as far as you can until you feel a stretch.

Marching

FInally, marching or walking in place can be a great balancer exercise. You can utilize a chair to stay balanced during this exercise. You are going to want to walk in place and bring your knee up to your chest. You want to hold your knee up at your chest for a couple of seconds and then put it back down. You are going to want to alternate this at least 20 times on each side.

To schedule an appointment with one of our pain management physicians, call us today at 732.202.3000!


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What is failed back surgery syndrome?

This is when patients fail to improve or worsen after spine surgery. Patients will continue to take large amounts of pain medication and are unable to return to normal activities. It is not one specific problem, but rather a term for people who back surgery didn’t help.

What causes failed back surgery syndrome?

There are many causes for failed back syndrome including unrealistic expectations (they wanted to feel like they were twenty), incorrect diagnosis and treatment, correct diagnosis but wrong surgery or the problem was not properly fixed.

What are symptoms of failed back surgery syndrome?

A new problem may form after surgery such as disk herniation, blood clot, infection or scar tissue. Muscle damage or bone removal may lead to spinal weakness, instability and new severe pain.

How do we treat failed back surgery syndrome?

Depending on the symptoms, there are a couple of routes our doctors can take. We could treat the symptoms with medication, injections, or a minimally invasive procedure. These procedures include spinal cord stimulators and radiofrequency ablations.

To schedule an appointment with one of our pain management specialists, call us today!

732.202.3000


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October 13, 2022 Health and Wellness0

Thomas Lembo was a Vietnam veteran and a retired police officer who served 30 years on the force in Elizabeth, NJ. Thomas described the horrors he dealt with during his career. “I have seen and been through things in my life that people only see in war movies. I have had several violent and disturbing encounters including a chemical explosion, being shot at, stabbed, and run over. I have been through things that no one should ever have to go through or see in their lifetime.”

These life events led Thomas to suffer from PTSD. He explained, “Up until 3 years ago I became more aware of my mortality. I felt like my armor fell off that I had on all these years. Everything started going bad in my life. I had nightmares daily. I couldn’t sleep. I was depressed and always on edge. All the years of trauma caught up with me and I was suffering.” Thomas knew he had to figure out something to help him deal with his PTSD. He and his wife found out about stellate ganglion injections, and he quickly asked his primary doctor about them. His doctor recommended Dr. Mann and after a thorough description of the procedure, Thomas decided to proceed. After a quick recovery, Thomas had this to say about the stellate ganglion injections.

“Within 3 days I felt instant relief. I was much more relaxed. I don’t have nightmares anymore. I feel like there is a weight lifted off of me that had been pulling me down.” “This has changed my life. I was at a loss, and because of receiving the injection I have my life back. It has been a revelation.”

TALK TO OUR PAIN MANAGEMENT SPECIALISTS ABOUT STELLATE GANGLION INJECTIONS TODAY!


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Worrying about bladder mishaps in your daily life can certainly keep you from doing the things you love most. Luckily, a bladder stimulator is a great option for those suffering from a number of different bladder conditions. Continue reading to learn more about bladder stimulators which may be right for you.

Symptoms of Bladder Control Problems

Common symptoms of bladder control problems may include:

  • Frequent urge to urinate
  • Inability to hold urine/leaking 
  • Inability to urinate 
  • Incomplete bladder emptying

Bladder Conditions 

While symptoms may vary there are four common types of bladder conditions:

Overactive Bladder (OAB): OAB is an umbrella term that includes the frequent and urgent need to empty your bladder. 

Urinary Incontinence: The inability to control when the bladder releases urine.

Urinary Retention: The inability to empty the bladder. People with this condition are unable to urinate or they feel frequent urges but only urinate small amounts.

Fecal Incontinence: Also known as accidental bowel leakage, is a condition where people get sudden urges to pass stool and experience leakage of stool before they make it to the restroom.

The Solution: A Bladder Stimulator

A bladder stimulator is a small device implanted in your back at the base of your spine and above the buttocks during a procedure known as sacral nerve stimulation (SNS). The sacral nerves carry the signals between your bladder, spinal cord, and brain that tell you when you need to urinate. This is done after exhausting conventional treatment options such as pelvic floor physical therapy and medications. 

At GSMC, we use a long-term relief technology called Axonics Therapy. Before committing to long-term therapy, our team first does a trial with the patient to see if the treatment works for each and every patient. A thin thin wire is carefully placed close to the third sacral nerve through a needle. The wire connects to a battery-powered device (similar to a pacemaker) called a pulse generator that you wear outside your body during a three day trial period. If the symptoms get significantly better the device is put in permanently and can last up to 15 years. 

The actual electrical stimulation that is used to treat urinary incontinence sends a mild electric current to nerves in the lower back/pelvic muscles which are involved in urination. The patient does not feel this electrical stimulation but the nerves do leading to symptoms improvement. 

Think you may be a candidate for a bladder stimulator? Call to set up your consultation and begin the recovery process today: 732-202-3000


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January 19, 2019 Health and Wellness0

 

Anywhere from 11% to 40% of American adults suffer from chronic pain.

 

The most common type of pain is back pain. In the US, 80% of adults will experience back pain at some point in their life. But is there anything you can do to get relief?

 

There are a number of conventional methods for treating back pain – but none are guaranteed and some are incredibly invasive. But stem cell therapy is a relatively new back pain treatment that offers promising results.

 

If you’re suffering from back pain, read on to learn more about the benefits of stem cell therapy for your condition.

 

7 Benefits of Stem Cell Therapy for Back Pain

 

Stem cell therapy is also known as regenerative medicine. It uses stem cells to repair diseased, dysfunctional, and/or injured tissue.

 

When it comes to back pain, anything that brings relief is welcome. But below we’ve listed the top 8 benefits of stem cell therapy specifically for back pain.

 

1. Stem Cell Therapy Is a Holistic Approach

 

Stem cell therapy repairs damaged discs and facet joints to restore mobility and function. Stem cells rehydrate the tissue and have the potential to significantly reduce chronic pain. And they do all this using the cells produced by your own body.

 

The therapy harvests bone marrow aspirate cellular concentrate (BMAC) from your own body. The BMAC concentrate is then re-injected into the area treatment area.

 

The injections involved in stem cell therapy don’t involve any chemicals or anything synthesized. In fact, there’s no risk of allergic reaction or rejection because your own stem cells are being used.

 

2. Stem Cell Treatment Carries Little Risk

 

In a stem cell therapy procedure, a long needle extracts bone marrow from the hip or fat cells of the patient. In order to identify and remove the primitive cells used in the therapy, the bone marrow is then spun in a centrifuge.

 

Those specific primitive stem cells are then re-injected into the area being treated. The stem cells help stimulate collagen production and healing in the disc or joint.

 

It’s important that a highly trained physician administers the therapy. The placement of the needle into the vertebral disc or facet joint is a precise procedure that requires professional expertise and experience.

 

As long as the therapy is performed by a qualified physician, there is very little risk. However, it’s possible that the injection can cause infection, bleeding, or nerve damage. 

 

3. Treat Disc Degeneration

 

The most common cause of back pain is disc degeneration and herniation. Disc degeneration and herniation are commonly caused by aging. But they can also be caused or exacerbated by Degenerative Disc Disorder, arthritis, and injury.

 

Disc degeneration is when the cells that make up the disc’s structure are continually being lost. As healthy cells are damaged and hydration is lost, tears can also occur in the disc. The result of disc degeneration is decreased mobility and function, stiffness, weakness, and pain. 

 

Stem cell therapy reinjects your adult stem cells into the damaged disc. The stem cells restore the height of the disc as well as hydration. The result is less pain and restored mobility.

 

4. Treat Facet Joint Dysfunction

 

The spinal facets joints are found on the back of either side of each spinal segment. Facet joint dysfunction can cause pain anywhere along the spine but it’s most commonly associated with neck and back pain. It’s usually caused by traumatic injuries such as whiplash as well as sport-related injuries.

 

Facet joint dysfunction can affect mobility and function. It can lead to stiffness, weakness, as well as pain.

 

Like treating disc degeneration, stem cell therapy treats facet joint dysfunction with your own adult stem cells. These are injected into damaged joints in order to restore their structure and alleviate symptoms.

 

5. Recover from Acute and Sub-Acute Injuries Faster

 

While stem cell therapy is mostly associated with treating chronic pain from degenerative discs, dysfunctional facet joints, and sciatica, it also shows promise for acute and sub-acute injuries. By using stem cells in the acute stages of an injury, recovery times can be significantly improved. 

 

6. Stem Cell Therapy Is Minimally Invasive

 

The first line of treatment for back pain and herniated discs is exercise and weight loss and physical therapy. Doctors may prescribe anti-inflammatories and pain medications.

 

When these treatments don’t work and the pain becomes too much, the last option is invasive spinal surgery. These involve general anesthesia and physical rehabilitation.

 

Spinal surgeries aren’t guaranteed to fully relieve symptoms. It’s not uncommon for patients to continue to experience pain and reduced mobility after spinal surgery. But stem cell therapy offers an alternative treatment that’s minimally invasive.

 

7. Stem Cell Treatment Offers Quick Relief

 

Some individuals experience relief from back pain after 1 stem cell therapy treatment of 2 to 3 injections. While most people see results within 3 months of receiving the therapy, others will feel the benefits sooner.

 

Are You Looking for Pain Relief?

 

The majority of American adults will experience some form of back pain in their life. Whether caused by degeneration, herniation, injury, or arthritis, the benefits of stem cell therapy are many.

 

Stem cell therapy has the potential to relieve pain and restore mobility. This holistic approach to treating chronic pain uses your own cell’s to restore damaged tissue and activate the healing process.

 

If you’re suffering from pain, read more about your treatment options on our blog.

 

 

 

 

 

 


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December 26, 2018 Health and Wellness0

Are you one of the 50 million American adults who struggles with chronic pain?

If your pain is brought on by arthritis, a herniated disc, neuropathy, or another chronic health condition, you might be able to benefit from trigger point injections. 

Never heard of this procedure before? Keep reading.

Everything you need to know about the trigger point injection procedure is explained below.

What Are Trigger Point Injections?

First things first, let’s clarify what the trigger point injection procedure is.  

In order to define trigger point injections, we first need to define trigger points. Trigger points are simply small knots that form in the muscles or the connective tissue (also known as the fascia) that surrounds the muscles.

You might not realize you have these knots until someone presses on them – they’re often tender or painful to the touch.

The trigger point injection procedure involves the insertion of a needle through the skin and into these trigger points.

By doing this, physicians are able to deliver an anesthetic solution directly into the trigger point. This, in turn, forces the trigger point to relax.

Conditions Treated by Trigger Point Injections

Trigger point injections can treat the pain associated with a wide range of health conditions.

People who suffer from the following conditions frequently seek this treatment to relieve their pain and discomfort:

  • Chronic pain
  • Osteoarthritis
  • Spinal stenosis
  • Herniated discs
  • Spinal compression fractures
  • Degenerative disc disease

A trigger point injection typically addresses pain in the arms, legs, neck, and lower back. 

Ideal Candidates for Trigger Point Injections

Most people struggling with pain can benefit from trigger point injections. The following individuals are typically considered to be ideal candidates:

  • Those who experience severe muscle spasms
  • Those who have previously experienced trauma to the affected area
  • Those who have a history of tension headaches or chronic muscle tension

Trigger point injections typically work best for people who experience pain and tension in a specific area, rather than those who experience widespread, non-specific pain.

To determine whether or not this treatment is suitable, physicians may perform an examination of the areas in which the patient experiences pain.

If they notice the presence of tender points or a “jump sign,” they may recommend injections. A “jump sign” is any kind of involuntary reaction to pain (flinching, wincing, crying out, etc.)

Are There Any Risks Associated with Trigger Point Injections?

In addition to being highly effective, trigger point injections are also very safe. The risk of complications is quite low.

In fact, the only side effects one typically experiences is some soreness or numbness at the site of the injection. In rare cases, an individual might experience bleeding or infection at the injection site.

The more serious side effects typically affect individuals who suffer from bleeding disorders or take anticoagulants. 

The only people who should not receive these injections are pregnant women and patients at a higher risk of infection.

Those who are allergic to anesthetic agents also should not receive this treatment. These same individuals may be able to benefit from dry needling. This procedure involves inserting a needle without injecting any kind of solution into the trigger point.

Who Can Perform the Procedure?

A trigger point injection must be administered by a trained and qualified medical professional.

Several types of physicians are able to perform these injections, including the following:

  • Family medicine doctors
  • Obstetricians
  • Rheumatologists

All of these doctors can perform this treatment, but it’s typically offered in pain management clinics. Doctors who specialize in treating patients with chronic back, neck, or joint pain may also offer it.

If possible, try to seek out treatment from one of these individuals. They have more experience in caring for those who suffer from chronic pain.

What to Expect during the Procedure

It’s okay if the idea of trigger point injections makes you a bit nervous. Sometimes, knowing what to expect from a treatment can help put your mind at ease and give you the confidence you need going into the procedure.

During a typical session, the physician will insert a small needle into specific trigger points. The injection contains a local anesthetic solution. It may also contain a corticosteroid for additional pain relief and reduced inflammation.

The injection renders the trigger point inactive and forces the muscle to relax, relieving pain and tension. 

Most of the time, the treatment takes just a few minutes. You may receive multiple injections at once. 

After the injections, your physician will likely recommend that you perform stretching exercises. This will further enhance the results of the treatment. 

How Much Downtime Is Required?

There is very little downtime associated with trigger point injections.

On the day of the injections, it’s best to limit your physical activity as much as possible. This is especially true if you experience any soreness at the injection site.

You should be able to get back to your regular activities (including stretching) the following day. 

How Long Do Results Last?

The results of trigger point injections can last for several days or for several months depending on the severity of your pain. On average, the relief lasts for several weeks at a time.

Some patients receive just one round of injections and are totally fine from then on.

If you decide to continue receiving these injections, you’ll work with your physician to create a schedule so that you can get injections as often as you need. 

Are You Interested in Trying This Procedure?

As you can see, there are lots of reasons to consider giving trigger point injections a try. They’re safe, effective, and come with very few risks. 

Do you want to learn more about this procedure?

If so, contact us at Garden State Medical Center and schedule an appointment with one of our pain specialists today.

During your appointment, we’ll go over your symptoms and help you determine whether or not these injections are a good pain management option.


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