An Overview of Myofascial Pain Syndrome

Myofascial pain syndrome is commonly called muscle pain that lingers for a long period of time, otherwise known as chronic muscles pain. Almost all people experience some kind of muscles pain at some point in their lives however, some people are more susceptible to it. Myofascial pain is generated in the soft tissues of the muscles which produces trigger points and is often the cause of referred pain.

Causes of Myofascial Pain Syndrome

The causes for myofascial pain are quite common such as injury to muscle fibers and repetitive use of muscle extensively. Also, the lack of activity in muscles can also cause myofascial pain syndrome. It most commonly occurs in athletes but non-athletic people are just as susceptible to this as well.

Signs and symptoms of myofascial pain

The most obvious symptom of myofascial pain syndrome is intense or sometimes dull kind of ache in the trigger points located in your body. This pain can become a lot worse by stress and tension. Sometimes, depression, anxiety, fatigue and behavioral disturbances are also observed in patients suffering from MPS.

Treatment for MPS

Myofascial pain syndrome is treated similarly to any other muscular pain however myofascial pain treatment has one exception and that is trigger point injections. Following are some common ways Myofascial pain is treated.

  • Medications – myofascial pain syndrome is largely treated with the help of medicines such as non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs abbreviated as NSAIDs or opioids. In addition to this, medications to help in sleep and muscle spasms are also prescribed to the patients. MPS patients are also prone to depression that is why anti-depressants and relaxants are also used for the treatment of myofascial pain treatment.
  • Physical therapy – physical therapy and exercises also make up a huge part for the treatment of MPS or other musculoskeletal disorders. Patients are prescribed to work with their therapist who will properly examine their condition and plan an exercise regimen according to each patient’s specific needs. Physical therapy is greatly beneficial while treating people with muscles pain disorders.
  • Trigger Point Injection – trigger point injections become a necessity when all the other treatments fail to show any results and the patient is in constant pain. Trigger point injections include a general anesthetic or saline and often, it includes corticosteroids. These substances are injected directly into the trigger points which can be felt under the skin. These injections render the trigger points inactive and alleviate the pain.
  • Massage therapy – trigger point injections are however the last resort in the treatment of myofascial pain syndrome. In addition to physical therapy, patients with MPS can greatly benefit from massage therapy as well. Professional chiropractors and masseurs work with these patients to relieve their pain and cure their disorder.
  • Acupuncture and Dry Needling – acupunctures and dry needling are some uncommon treatments for myofascial pain syndrome that people don’t usually engage in but acupuncture treatment has especially risen over the medical field and has proven to be quite effective in some case. A small number of patients with myofascial pain syndrome has benefited from dry needling as well.