solution to tendon problems ?
David Chapman-Jones, a specialist in sport and exercise medicine,
writes this important article about tendons. In association
with the Queens Medical Centre, Nottingham, City University,
London and a number of European Medical Centres he has focused
his research and clinical activities on soft-tissue disorders,
particularly those seen in tendons. Dr Chapman-Jones has studied
the way they work, heal and why they cause so many problems
to both humans and horses.
solution to tendon problems ?
both a functional and biological perspective tendons
in humans are so similar to those found in animals what applies
to one species could, and often does,
equally apply to another.
This is an important factor to bear in mind when designing, researching
and evaluating new treatment regimes
like a lot of things in life, are not given a moments thought until
they go wrong - and when they do go wrong, as many athletes and
horse owners will testify, oh dear, do they go wrong! Imagine the
gripe of pain, like tooth ache, every time you move your arm or
leg then imagine this becoming progressively worse and lasting,
in some cases, for years.
paints a depressingly dark picture but what makes it blacker is
the apparent lack of coherent treatment regimes available to sufferers.
This appears to be equally as true in the equine world as the human
one. So is there an answer as how to reliable and reproducibly treat
tendon problems in humans or horses? I believe there is - micro-current,
clinically and scientifically proven to be the most effective method
to date to treat both chronic and acute disorders in tendons and
ligaments. Firstly, a little more about the problem.
It is a fact that tendons cause problems in humans and tendons cause
problems in horses! These conditions can often be career ending
in both cases.
was treating a patient with a problematical Achilles tendon and
being a horse owner she asked me if the treatment she was receiving
would work on her horse that had tendon problems for several months.
In view of the fact that the causes of pathology occurring in tendons
in horses is almost certainly the same as in humans - multi-factorial,
a combination of biomechanical, pathological and structural changes
all contributing towards painful, swollen and dysfunctional tendons
- the answer had to be yes. However, in order to explain how the
treatment may cross-over species, it is necessary to understand
why tendons cause so many problems.
key question to ask before arriving at a suitable treatment for
any condition is,
is, or are, the cause(s) of the condition in the organ presenting
with the problem? And what has gone wrong in the normal repair processes
to cause such a long-term problem. - A little bit of biology to
cells that are specialised to produce the tissue (collagen) required
to make the structure of the tendon are often the reason why a tendon
problem fails to get better. In the tendon these cells are located
within the tendon sheath and are called tenocytes. The tenocytes
appear to become 'lazy' and as a result are less in number and the
ones that are present produce less collagen. This is particularly
evident as we age or if the tendon is overstressed. This cellular
'go-slow' results in a lack of the protein called collagen, the
biological scaffolding that gives the tendon or ligament its structure
and strength. This slows down healing in acute (immediate) and chronic
(long-term) conditions giving us the problem of how to deal with
this problem and treat these conditions successfully.
How good are current treatment methods?
It seems to me that the current treatment of this type of injury
is dependent upon several factors:
¢ the severity of the injury
¢ its site of occurrence
and possibly the most pertinent,
¢ the practitioners preference for a particular treatment modality.
Laser, ultrasound, electrotherapy, magnetic therapy and others have
all been tried and tested - although never very scientifically;
their virtues extolled by the promoters the therapies.
humans are still suffering and horses are making premature visits
to their maker.
what does work?
We have been experimenting with micro-current treatments. Micro-currents
occur naturally in the body providing cells with one method of communicating
with one another. During injury and illness these currents are disrupted.
Research has shown that using externally applied currents of the
same intensity, that mimic the body's own bio-electrical system,
will promote the healing process. Studies have shown that micro-current
electrical stimulation has the effect of promoting and enhancing
tenocyte activity that has the effect of accelerating the regeneration
healing processes of the tendon tissue repair. Therefore the healing
process is hastened. Studies conducted by my research team have
what for Horses?
The knowledge and understanding achieved with respect to treating
tendon and ligament problems in people has proved to be helpful
to the equine world.
have now treated several horses with quite bad tendon problems and
have had encouraging results with each horse. Healing time is significantly
reduced and as a result the return to normal activities is considerable
In 1986 an eminent Canadian Sports Physician, Dr W Stanish, researching
the effects of micro-current on damaged ligaments, wrote that micro-current
therapy was set to revolutionise the treatment of sports injuries.
However, studies frequently employed protocols that required daily
or twice daily applications resulting in regular trips to the physician
for the patient. In addition, the micro-current equipment was specialised
and therefore expensive. These factors made micro-current an impractical
treatment for more than the fortunate few or subjects participating
in an experimental study.
Following extensive clinical research and electronic development
with doctors, scientists and engineers MicroMed Technology Systems
Ltd have developed with what is currently believed to be the optimum
treatment parameters, an inexpensive, computer controlled, home
use micro-current unit. It is called MicroDoctor®
non-athletes and equine owners now can now treat themselves or their
horses with a safe, effective and proven therapy without the inconvenience
of repeated trips to the physician, therapist or vet.
me more about MicroDoctor®
MicroDoctor is a small, hand-held, battery operated micro-current
unit designed for home and professional/clinic use. It has four,
easy to use, pre-set automatic programmes which are based strictly
upon data from the clinical and scientific studies that have shown
that micro-current treatments may significantly accelerate the healing
processes in tendons, ligaments and other soft-tissue structures.
MicroDoctor is now giving real hope of a successful and reliable
treatment for such disabling conditions enabling you to get back
to the sport or life you love quicker.
further information or to place your order contact:
Gordon House Healthcare Products Limited, 51 Cardiff Road, Luton,
Beds LU11PP. UK. Tel: +44 (0) 1582 616703 Fax: +44 (0) 1582 616704