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From the Townsend Letter
November 2018

The Truth About Pain – A Different Paradigm
by Hal S. Blatman, MD
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With only myofascial release, use of rubber ball massage techniques as described in Winners' Guide to Pain Relief, and nutritional changes her condition improved and she presented on July 2 with the pain pattern illustrated in Figure 2. This is representative of improvement in most all chronic pain patients 4 weeks after myofascial work with rubber ball, and a gluten free non-inflammatory diet. Even before injection or needling therapies, simple food changes and self massage techniques have already made a significant difference.

Figure 2

Figure 2. XX showing less pain and x’s represent the most significant tenderness and also the locations of trigger point injections.

Working with the 5 rules of the Blatman Method of Pain CSI, trigger point injections resulted in significant and rapid improvement demonstrated by the pain diagram colored on July 12, see figure 3.

Figure 3

Figure 3. Shows continued dramatic improvement with each treatment.

And then after more of the same treatment figure 4 is from August 16.

Figure 4

Figure 4. She is mostly pain free and has returned to her most important physical activities.

This patient presented with disabling pain involving the right side of her body from neck to thigh. She had seen another physician, experienced some acupuncture, and had an MRI scan of her lower back. The MRI scan illustrated scoliosis and arthritic changes that included facet arthropathy L2-S1, disc space narrowing at multiple levels in conjunction with mild osteophytic spurring, disc space narrowing at L5-S1, and mild degenerative endplate changes.

This patient's diagnosis of myofascial injury was made by careful and very specific physical examination of muscle and fascia. Treatment was directed toward helping her body recover from the injuries this examination detected, and also by reducing the fascial inflammation in her body resultant from food and perhaps environmental toxic exposures.

Patient XX was an ideal person for healing from this pain. She took all suggestions seriously, and followed all directions completely. Gluten and dairy free choices were absolute. Without inflammation from food and environmental toxicity, treatment acording to this paradigm of discovering and helping to heal the fascia injuries of a life time, pain can be relieved as quickly as the body can heal.

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SUPPORTThe Townsend Letter is dedicated to examining and reporting on functional and integrative medicine. Our editorial content depends on support from readers like you, and we would appreciate your help to keep this content forthcoming. Please take this opportunity to contribute $50, or choose one of the other amounts listed on the next page, and ensure that our independent voices keep up the good fight against the skeptics, who would like to silence us and eliminate your medical freedoms.

1. Simons D, Travell J. Myofascial Pain and Dysfunction: The Trigger Point Manual, vol 1. 2nd ed, Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, 1999.
2. van der Wal J. The architecture of the connective tissue in the musculoskeletal system – an often overlooked functional parameter as to proprioception in the locomotor apparatus.  Int J Ther Massage Bodywork. Dec 2009; 2(4) -23.
3. Langevin et al. Fibroblasts form a body-wide cellular network. Histochem Cell Biol. July 2004; 122(1)7-15.
4. Schleip et al. Fascia is able to contact in a smooth muscle-like manner and thereby influence musculoskeletal mechanics. J Biomech. 2006;39 (Supplement 1):S488.
5.  Mitchell & Schmitt. Cardiovascular reflex control by afferent fibers from skeletal muscle receptors, In: Shepherd JT et al. (eds), Handbook of Physiology, Sect. 2, Vol III, 1977.
6.  Berlucci G, Aglioti S. The body in the brain revisited, Exp Brain Res. January 2010;200(1);25-25.
7.  Standley, Meltzer, J Body Mov Ther. July 2008; 12(3):201-3.
8.  Pillon N et al., Muscle cells challenged with saturated fatty acids out an autonomous inflammatory response that activates macrophages. Cell Communication and Signaling. 2012;10:30.
9.  Perlmutter D. Grain Brain. Little Brown and Company, 2013.

Hal S. Blatman, MD, is the founder and medical director of the Blatman Health and Wellness Center in Cincinnati, Ohio, a nationally recognized specialist in myofascial pain, and co-author of The Art of Body Maintenance: Winners' Guide to Pain Relief, a reference for treating myofascial pain, from migraine headaches to plantar fascitis. He is credentialed in pain management, occupational and environmental medicine, and integrative holistic medicine, and also trained in craniosacral therapy and Healing Touch.  After receiving his medical degree from the Medical College of Pennsylvania in 1980, Dr. Blatman completed two years of training in orthopedic surgery.  He later studied ergonomics and toxicology during his residency in occupational and environmental medicine at the University of Cincinnati Hospital. In the early 1990s, he studied with the late Dr. Janet Travell, a pain physician to President Kennedy. Dr. Blatman currently leads a team that specializes in the holistic and comprehensive rehabilitation and treatment of pain, ligament and tendon injury, fibromyalgia, and chronic fatigue syndrome. He is a past president of the American Holistic Medical Association, with offices also in Manhattan and Seattle.

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