Pain and loss of function in your hands, wrists, arms, elbows and shoulders can deprive you of the most basic conveniences. From logging into the computer at work and sending a quick email, to playing with your kids and completing your favorite workout, those pains and injuries can put a stop to your day before it even begins.
Who do you turn to when it’s time to tackle upper extremity pain?
Philadelphia Hand to Shoulder Center has made it a priority to serve the entire Delaware Valley, offering care for all injuries and conditions impacting the upper extremity, from arthritis and trigger finger to traumatic injuries and nerve reconstruction. With three offices in South Jersey, the group’s renowned team of physicians, clinical staff and therapists keep the focus on the individual needs of each patient, offering a range of cutting-edge treatments.
That team includes three of South Jersey Magazine’s Top Doctors for 2021: Dr. Mark S. Rekant, Dr. Patrick M. Kane and Dr. Andrew J. Miller.
“There are few practices in the area like PHSC, that care for shoulder through to the fingertips,” explains Dr. Mark Rekant. “Our practice is uniquely comprehensive, providing non-surgical treatment, cutting-edge surgical procedures and rehabilitative care, including personalized therapy and custom splits in our 16 offices in New Jersey and Pennsylvania.”
Philadelphia Hand to Shoulder Center’s evolution includes advancements in technology and comprehensive care offered in-office, so patients can lessen travel times and reduce the number of referrals needed to complete their care. “We offer in-house radiography and therapy so that patients can get everything they need in one setting and consultation,” says Dr. Andrew Miller. “This saves time on making the right diagnosis and getting the appropriate care for patients.
With a foundation in research, innovations are a cornerstone of the practice, whether it be treating common conditions like carpal tunnel syndrome or more complex procedures like nerve and tendon transfers. Many of these innovations provide clinical and lifestyle benefits such as smaller incisions and quicker recovery times. “Carpal tunnel syndrome is a common condition that is associated with repetitive work activities, and we continue to see a high prevalence of this among patients,” Dr. Kane says. “The Philadelphia Hand to Shoulder Center has instituted advanced minimally invasive surgical techniques for the treatment of this condition. We always try therapy and non-operative care first, but if that fails, there is a cutting-edge technology allowing surgeries to be done on an outpatient basis, under local anesthesia only and with non-narcotic postoperative pain control protocols involving Tylenol and Ibuprofren,” he adds.
Nerve-related issues can lead to an assortment of symptoms such as numbness and tingling. But other symptoms such as pain, burning and even stiffness can be attributed to nerve injury. “When it comes to nerve related compression and injury, keep an eye out for night-time symptoms where numbness and tingling wakes you up at night or activity-related positional changes of the wrist, such as driving a car, cause the hand to go numb,” says Dr. Miller.
Philadelphia Hand to Shoulder Center’s innovative approach to nerve reconstruction has provided new opportunities to patients who once lived with permanent nerve damage. “Similar to open heart surgery, we are reconstructing nerve injuries with procedures like nerve autografts that were thought to be irreparable even just 20 years ago,” says Dr. Rekant.
Tips for Back to Sports and Back to School Safety
As school is back in session and children are gearing up for fall sports, remember to stretch and avoid overuse. “We treat a lot of young athletes with overuse injuries,” says Dr. Kane. “The stress sports puts on the body is different from what we saw five to 10 years ago. We see more children with overuse injuries. It’s our general recommendation that people play multiple sports and are mindful of over training, but this is especially important in the pediatric population,” Dr. Kane adds.
Dr. Rekant offers several helpful tips to avoid back-to-school or back-to-office stress on your hands, wrists, arms, elbows and shoulders. “A great thing to check out is wider grip pens that lessen the stress on the thumb and on the fingers,” says Dr. Rekant. “I also advise that people think about sitting positions and take breaks every 15 minutes to stretch your hands and fingers. If you have the ability, it is worth getting a standing desk, or even just move your laptop to a counter for some time every day. It helps keep your elbow and shoulder from being stuck in the same position for two to three hours, which leads to tinnitus and tennis elbow.”
For nearly 50 years, Philadelphia Hand to Shoulder Center has put the focus on providing exceptional care for injuries and conditions of the hands, wrists, arms, elbows and shoulders and getting their patients back to enjoying life.
Philadelphia Hand to Shoulder Center
Providing exceptional, comprehensive care with 16 offices in New Jersey and Pennsylvania including Cherry Hill, Mays Landing and Cape May Court House.