Thank you for visiting the Horrigan Sports Chiropractic and Soft Tissue Center web site. This facility is a chiropractic sports medicine and rehabilitation facility. Dr. Joseph Horrigan joined a new group known as Diagnostic and Interventional Spinal/Sports Care (D.I.S.C.). D.I.S.C. is a 65,000 square foot facility in Marina del Rey, CA, and has 22 physicians in the group. A 10,000 square foot D.I.S.C satellite facility in Beverly Hills opened in October 2009. The Soft Tissue Center at D.I.S.C. provides the conservative care for this group. This care includes soft tissue mobilization, joint mobilization and manipulation, rehabilitation, acupuncture and oriental medicine, and nutritional consultation.
The Soft Tissue Center has often been referred to as "the best kept secret in sports" due to our reputation for deriving accurate diagnoses and obtaining results in difficult cases, as well as returning athletes to play quickly.
WHAT IS SOFT TISSUE MOBILIZATION?
The primary focus at this facility is the soft tissue component of the injury. Simply noted, soft tissue is everything other than bone. Soft tissue does include the organs, but our interest is: muscles, tendons, ligaments, bursae, fascia and nerves. The treatment of these structures is known as soft tissue mobilization. The basis for this method of treatment is several fold. When trauma occurs, whether it be major trauma, or repeated microtrauma, inflammation occurs. The inflammation leads to fibrous tissue formation (scar tissue) in the muscle, between the muscles and between the layers of connective tissue. This fibrous tissue formation causes a decreased ability of the muscle to lengthen and contract as it normally does which in turn leads to a decreased range of motion. This effect can be very local within a muscle or can affect the muscle groups very broadly. The fibrous tissue can also cause pain and a predisposition to re-injury in the same injury. Additionally, pain can lead to muscle guarding, or splinting. the guarding protects the injured area. If the contraction of the muscle guarding is prolonged, the muscle can lose its normal length by the process of adaptive shortening.
There are other factors that have not been researched. These factors include a chemical effect such as histamines and endorphins to name a few. Also, the proprioceptive mechanism is not understood. This is often seen when injuries receive proper taping treatment and significant improvement occurs. The body's feedback loops are not understood enough to know why we can provide light manual pressure treatment in some cases and produce significant results.
Soft tissue mobilization addresses the previously described complication of soft tissue injuries. There are really two components to soft tissue mobilization. By definition, manipulation implies high velocity, high amplitude thrust or motion. Mobilization implies low velocity, low amplitude thrust or motion. The soft tissue is mobilized by the doctor's hands as his/her hands/fingers move through the muscle. The patient has the involved joint moving as well. This motion is joint mobilization which occurs simultaneously during the soft tissue mobilization. This motion may occur with the patient performing all the motion (active), or with help from the doctor (active-assisted), or entirely by the doctor (passive). All of the muscles surrounding the injured joint/region are treated (mobilized) and the joint is moved (mobilized) in all planes of motion and this makes the treatment time consuming. The treatment can be modified to be sport specific or task specific if needed or required. Joint manipulation is used as indicated.
EARLY HISTORY OF THE SOFT TISSUE CENTER
The high degree of successful outcomes with athletes drew the attention of the weight training and bodybuilding media. IRONMAN magazine had a feature article on Horrigan in the May 1986 issue and this was followed by another feature article in MUSCLE AND FITNESS in the June 1986 issue. Articles followed in SPORTS FITNESS (1986), POWERLIFTING USA (1988), IRONSPORT (1988) and another feature in IRONMAN in 1990. Dr. Horrigan wrote the IRONMAN Magazine Sports Medicine Column beginning in May 1989 and continued for ten years and wrote over 100 installments. [LINK Ironman Columns]. The Column resumed in the March 2004 issue. The Sports Medicine Column for INSIDE KUNG-FU was also provided in the late 1990's and will resume as well. Reprints of the IRONMAN Sports Medicine Column have appeared in MS. FITNESS Magazine. An article featuring the Soft Tissue Center appeared in INSIDE VOLLEYBALL in 1999. There were numerous articles in various newspapers around the USA and Canada including the Vancouver Sun, Winnipeg local paper, Los Angeles Times, The Hockey News, Philadelphia Inquirer during this time for the work with many professional hockey players.
PROCESS OF HISTORY AND DIAGNOSIS
Treatment is of course, based on a diagnosis. The first step of a diagnosis is the history. It is often stated in health care that the history is eighty percent of the diagnosis. One hour, or more if needed, is allocated for the history and physical examination at the Soft Tissue Center. After the examination is completed, a diagnosis is derived, treatment begins unless advanced testing is indicated prior to initiating treatment. Referrals for advanced testing may be indicated and if so may include:
Appropriate referrals to other health care professionals are based upon the data gathered in the history, physical exams and tests. The referral may be to an orthopedic surgeon, neurosurgeon, neurologist, physiatrist (physical medicine), internist, rheumatologist, pain management specialist, vascular radiologist, dentist, psychologist, or physical therapist.
Exercises to strengthen an area of the body, improve it's range of motion, or improve balance and function may be prescribed, instructed and implemented. The staff at the Soft Tissue Center is strongly suited for this. All of the doctors are Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialists (CSCS) staff. Several of the doctors are USA Weightlifting Level 1 certified coaches (Club Coach). Dr. Horrigan also serves on the USA Weightlifting Sports Medicine Committee and served as the Head Speed-Strength and Conditioning Coach for the Los Angeles Kings (NHL) and Long Beach Ice Doand conditioning services can be found in the strength and conditioning section on tgs (IHL and WCHL) teams. More information about our strength his website.
- electrodiagnostic tests(electromyography or EMG, nerve conduction velocity or
- NCV, F-wave, etc.).
- diagnostic imaging (x-rays of the injured region, MRI, CT scan, bone scan, spect
- bone scan, MR neurography, MR angiography, bone density, etc.).
- lab tests as indicated.
Strength and Conditioning
The sports medicine background for the Soft Tissue Center staff is significant. Drs. Horrigan, Tunnell and Fox have achieved the highest level of chiropractic sports medicine.