Performing Arts Medicine, 3rd ed.Medical Problems of Performing Artists

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Musculoskeletal Problems of Instrumental Musicians

Richard A. Hoppmann
From: Performing Arts Medicine, 3rd ed.: Chapter 11 © 2010; page: 1207

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Abstract: To reach the high skill level required of instrumental musicians demands many hours of practice over many years. Unfortunately, the demands these musicians place on their bodies can lead to playing-related injuries. Reports on treatment outcomes have demonstrated that many of the problems of performers, especially when addressed early, stand an excellent chance of resolution with minimal intervention and disruption of performance. This chapter discusses the common musculoskeletal problems affecting instrumentalists. Of these, musculotendinous overuse is the most frequently reported and is discussed in terms of both nonspecific overuse or regional pain syndromes and as specific entities of tendinitis and bursitis. Regional pain syndromes include those affecting the shoulder (impingement syndrome, subacromial/subdeltoid bursitis, bicipital tenderness), elbow (lateral epicondylitis, de Quervain¿s tenosynovitis), and hand (trigger finger). Ganglion, osteoarthritis of the hand, neck and back, hypermobility, and other musculoskeletal problems are also discussed, as are their treatment options. Anatomy of the joints and muscles is explained, and the physical examination and elements of the practice/performance history are explored, including factors known to be associated with the development of musculotendinous problems.

Last Updated: 5 / 2010

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