The who the what now?  Grasta what?  Isn’t that the Jamaican guys who wear the dreadlocks? Okay, anyone who reads my post on a regular basis, all 3 of you thanks Mom (man, I am not even sure my Mom reads these).  Anyway… I am going to do a series of much smaller posts to discuss the extra tools that Chiropractors have in their tool belt, so to speak.

 

Believe it or not, I am actually talking about an actual tool today.  Well… we were told not to call it a tool because that sounds so barbaric, so let’s use the term that they told us to use when I was trained in using said tool… opps I mean highly specialized medical instrument.  Believe it or not some people come into my office NOT for back pain, neck pain and headaches (though they are the majority BY FAR). Some people come in with ankle issues, or elbow issues (like my last post) or even the occasional finger, wrist and hand issues.   Why the heck would they do something so odd, don’t they know that a Chiropractor can only make stuff crack? (its called an adjustment, just ask Batman…).

Graston can help diagnose and treat mechanical injury
(IE when it hurts to move it)

Say you have an issue with your wrist and it hurts to bend it or flex it. Now imagine you have a job where you have to do something repetitive with small movements… say maybe something like, I don’t know maybe using, a keyboard and a mouse. Do you know anyone who does something so archaic as that?  Repetitive strain is one of the most common reasons I see patients with wrist problems. Wait a second- this isn’t a post on wrist problems this is a post on Graston!

Okay, ADD get a grip on yourself!  Anyway where was I? Right, Graston tools, er instruments.   First I will describe what these instruments are, what they look like etc… wait we have ability to post pictures to this interweb thing right?  I will do that… here is what the instruments look like, they almost look like set of knives that a Chef carries around no?  They even have a fancy bag that they all fit in just so.  If you look closely at the instruments you will notice that they are all different shapes and sizes the biggest reason for these differences is where we are able to use each instrument, they fit into difference places better than others.  The one that I seem to use the most is called GT2 (I know real original names) and I use it for places like forearms and hands and ankles.  The other instrument I have is called GT 5 and it is very good for treatment in the neck.

The thing that these instruments allow me to do that is unique is they are helpful for finding something called scar tissue.  Something everyone knows about but not something most people would be able to describe.  Scar tissue is what happens when the body is trying to heal a trauma.  Trauma is an event that leaves damaged tissue in its wake. What happens is that when tissues are broken, it usually results in a hole or a tear in the tissue.  When we have damage in tissue it leaves us vulnerable for things like infection, so the body has become very adept at filling the hole with collagen. The problem happens because when the body is damaged, it is more concerned about speed and is less concerned about form.  IE Collagen laid down very quickly is a mess; it does a fantastic job of plugging a hole very       quickly but the end result is a rats nest of collagen fibers. IE not normal regular tissue but scar tissue.  What the Graston instruments allow me to do is more specifically pin point scar tissues (diagnose) and then the instruments also help me to break that scar tissue down.  Treatment with Graston looks more barbaric than it feels but there is no doubt that scar tissue is changed with treatment.

I really appreciate having such a precise instrument to not only help me pin point scar tissue but help to eliminate it as well.  Graston is always followed up with homework. When we break down scar tissue we have to replace it with something, and if we give the body forces to respond to when it is laying down the collagen again we end up with much  more regular tissue, which functions much better than a rats nest.