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Texas Orthopedics, Sports & Rehabilitation Associates

Thursday, March 14, 2013

Minimally Invasive FAST Technique Offers Patients a New Treatment Option for Tendon-Related Injuries

Dr. Michael Loeb announces the offering of a new advanced treatment that quickly and safely removes the source of tendon pain. Based on technology developed in collaboration with the Mayo Clinic, the FAST Technique—Fasciotomy and Surgical Tenotomy—is a minimally invasive treatment option for tendon and soft tissue injuries, such as tennis elbow and golfer’s elbow.

“I am extremely pleased with the results I am seeing in my patients who have been treated with the FAST Technique,” says Dr. Loeb. “They have reported experiencing a nearly painless treatment, a quick recovery, and lasting pain relief. I believe this new option will become a definitive treatment that removes the source of tendon pain.”

FAST is performed using a local anesthetic to numb the area, patients are awake and alert the entire time. During the treatment, conventional ultrasound imaging is used to identify the location of the scar tissue. Once located, a small instrument—the size of a toothpick—is inserted into the damaged tendon. The instrument delivers ultrasonic energy specifically designed to cut, break up, and remove damaged tissue safely and quickly, without disturbing the surrounding healthy tendon tissue.

“Before tendon-related injuries were a common problem that did not have a good solution,” says Dr. Loeb. “With the FAST Technique, I am able to intervene earlier in my patients’ care, change the nature of the disease, and get them back to their daily activities.”

Currently, over 10 million people in this country suffer from severe pain due to tendon scar tissue, which limits their range of motion and keeps them from living an active life. Common treatment options such as rest, pain medication, cortisone injections, or physical therapy address the pain but not the damaged tissue, the source of tendon pain. An open surgical procedure removes the damaged tissue but carries the risk of invasive procedures, including damage to the surrounding healthy tissue and a lengthy recovery time with restricted activity.

Unlike conventional treatment methods, the FAST Technique replicates the goal of an open surgical procedure by removing the damaged tissue, but in a minimally invasive manner. The FAST Technique usually takes 15 minutes or less, requires only an adhesive bandage to close the microincision, and offers quick recovery time for patients.

“I am excited about being able to provide the most technologically advanced treatment option for tendon injuries here in Austin that truly benefits my patients,” says Dr. Loeb.

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