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fascial adhesions:  the perfect storm of chronic pain


FASCIA is the tough, mucousy, cellophane-like membrane that adheres tightly to nerves, blood vessels, and yes, muscles.  One of the things I’ve learned from 25 years of treating patients is that if a person has FASCIAL ADHESIONS — Fascia whose fibers are not lined up in a neat orderly manner, but are instead clumped into a tangled, matted, wad (like THIS or THIS) — they will never hold adjustments (HERE). 

This means they are coming in over and over and over again, for the same old problems.  While some chiros might look at this as their bread and butter (HERE), my goal is always to do whatever I can to get your problem solved ASAP.  Remember; I’m the guy that wants to see less of you instead of more (HERE).

Not only will the folks described in the previous paragraph likely end up with some sort of Chronic Pain issue; when they go to the doctor for EXAMINATIONS and TESTS, their pain will probably be blamed on the most common scapegoats — ARTHRITIS and FIBROMYALGIA.  While people with these problems certainly exist in significant numbers, “Arthur and Fibro” usually get way more credit than they deserve.  Problems in the Fascia (fascial adhesions being chief among them) often lead to Chronic Pain’s “Perfect Storm” because…….

  • Fascia is arguably the single most pain-sensitive tissue in the body (see link at beginning of the post).  When you couple this with the fact that it is also the most abundant Connective Tissue in the body, you can begin to see the potential for disaster looming on the horizon.
  • Fascial Adhesions will not show up on MRI (HERE) even though most of you believe that your pain is so bad it should make your MRI glow red (HERE).  Unfortunately, Fascia is so thin that it will not show up excepting in certain places like possibly the PLANTAR FASCIA (no, it does not do a good job with the THORACOLUMBAR FASCIA, although there is some newer technology out there that is helping — HERE).  What happens when your MRI comes back negative?  You are likely to be labeled a hypochondriac, DEPRESSED, a DRUG SEEKER, or trying to get on Disability (unfortunately, there are lots of people in each of these categories).  Once your insurance company says it will not pay for any more tests or treatments, you will be discarded by the medical community like a piece of trash, or forwarded on to “Pain Management” where standard fare is THE BIG FIVE along with any number of invasive procedures.
  • If you have areas of Fascial Adhesions (the SCAR TISSUE that the medical community usually refers to as “FIBROSIS“), they can cause problems like ALLODYNIA OR HYPERALGIA.  In other words, Scar Tissue has the potential to be ridiculously pain-sensitive when compared to normal tissue — up to 1,000 times more pain-sensitive (HERE).  Few doctors are aware of this, nor do they seem to be aware of the intimate relationship between inflammation, fibrosis, and degeneration (HERE) — of if they are, they’re doing a great job of keeping it a secret.
  • It’s increasingly likely that your doctor will likely not touch you or examine you (they usually rely on imaging and other diagnostic testing), which is really the only way of determining whether or not Fascial Adhesions might be present (HERE or HERE). Yesterday I treated a young physician who has been dealing with progressively worsening CHRONIC NECK PAIN.  One of his big complaints about his care (one that I hear regularly), is that when he went to pain specialists, neurologists, orthopedists, etc, they did not touch him, watch him move, check RANGES OF MOTION, or look at anything else that might actually provide some valuable clues as to what the problem is.  Instead, tests were ordered, pictures were taken, blood was drawn, and he was charged incredible amounts of money for injections of BOTOX, CORTICOSTEROIDS, or LIDOCAINE, and then prescribed the STANDARD MEDICATIONS when nothing was found.


Fascial Adhesions: The Shipwreck of Chronic Pain

Take the four bullet points above, put them in a witch’s cauldron, stir them all together, throw in the COPIOUS AMOUNTS OF DRUGS that your doctors continue to prescribe, bring it all to a boil, and you have a recipe for disaster — the “Perfect Storm” for perpetuating your Chronic Pain (drugs cause INTESTINAL PERMEABILITY, which leads to increased inflammation and SYMPATHETIC DOMINANCE). 

Maybe it’s time to step outside the box and actually address the underlying cause(s) of your pain.  I do not want to insinuate for even a moment that I help each and every person I treat —- BUT I HELP A HECK OF LOT OF YOU. The nice thing is; you’ll know in just one treatment if what I do is going to help (HERE). There are parallel approaches to the Inflammation / Fibrosis problem that are likewise invaluable for maintaining the good results over the long haul (HERE).


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