Performing Arts Medicine

Performing Arts Medicine (PAM) is an area of interest to Linda due to her former career as a professional musician and music educator. PAM is an area of health care which addresses the general health and well-being of musicians, dancers, & actors. PAM practitioners are knowledgeable of performing artists’ lifestyles, professional activities, as well as the specific challenges and stress factors affecting the mind, body, and spirit of performing artists. PAM includes the treatment and prevention of  injuries and conditions common to specific populations within those art forms.

Listed below are some health issues encountered by performing artists and which can benefit from Chinese medicine/acupuncture, and massage.

Injuries Common to Musicians:

  • Upper Body
    • Injuries of the back, neck, shoulder, fingers, hands, wrist, jaw
    • Overuse and repetitive strain injuries
    • Shoulder impingement syndrome
    • Temporomandibular joint disorder (TMJ)
    • Spondylolysis
    • Bursitis
    • Tendonitis
    • Carpal tunnel syndrome
    • Cubital tunnel syndrome
    • Thoracic outlet syndrome
    • DeQuervain’s tenosynovitis
    • Lateral epicondylitis (tennis elbow)
    • Medial epicondylitis (golfer’s elbow)
  • Vocalists: Focal dysphonia (changes in the voice), vocal fold lesions
  • String players: Injuries of the neck, shoulder, arm, ear, nose, throat, mouth
  • Wind players: Lip injury, laryngoceles from excess air pressure
  • Percussionists: Injuries of the back, shoulder, neck, arm, wrist, hand; finger tension & pain
  • Pianists: Injuries of the neck, shoulder, arm, wrist, hand; back pain, finger tension

Injuries Common to Dancers:

  • Elbow, wrist, hand: Thoracic outlet syndrome, epicondylitis (tennis elbow, golfers elbow), carpal tunnel syndrome
  • Shoulder: Rotator cuff tear, shoulder impingement syndrome
  • Back: Spine injuries, low back strain, sacroiliac joint sprain, herniated discs
  • Hip: Snapping hip syndrome (tight iliotibial band), arthritis, piriformis syndrome, femoral stress fracture, bursitis
  • Knee: Patellofemoral pain, knee sprains and strains, meniscus & ligament tears, osteoarthritis
  • Lower leg: Shin sprains, stress fractures, stress reactions
  • Ankle and foot: Ankle sprains, achilles tendinitis, bunion, plantar faciitis, i­mpingement syndromes (dancer’s heel),  subtalar subluxation
  • Foot & toes: Stress fractures, more
  • Dancers are prone to injury in every joint in the body

Health Conditions Common to Performing Artists:

  • Stress
  • Performance anxiety
  • Fatigue
  • Insomnia
  • Depression
  • Eating disorders
  • Substance abuse
  • Chemical dependency
  • Menstrual disorders
  • HIV/AIDS
  • Arthritis