Suffering With A Sports Injury?: The Most Common Sports Injuries
Whether it’s a throwing injury or a the result of a hard tackle many individuals suffer from serious sports injuries and conditions and don’t even know it. Are you experiencing joint instability or concussion symptoms? Is this a simple muscle strain or something more involved? Let’s take a look at some of the most common sports injuries.
Concussions are traumatic brain injuries (TBI) caused by a direct or indirect blow to the head or neck. Millions of athletes suffer concussions annually making it one of the most prevalent athletic injuries.
Bone Fractures and Stress Fractures
Bone fractures and stress fractures occur as a result of a direct trauma or continuous stress over time. Today, nearly half of all stress fractures affect the lower leg.
Sudden rotations or direct impact to a joint may result in a dislocation. This injury is often painful and will require immediate medical attention. Dislocated shoulders and dislocated fingers occur frequently during athletic competition.
Knee and Ankle Sports Injuries
Collisions, quick pivots, or squatting motions during activity can lead to cartilage damage, ligament tears, and tendon ruptures. We specialize in a range of options to treat ACL injuries , runner’s knee, meniscus tears, and other common sports injuries.
Elbow and Shoulder Sports Injuries
Whether it’s baseball, volleyball, or tennis, throwing injuries and elbow overuse injuries are prevalent. We have many surgical and nonsurgical treatment options for many common shoulder and elbow injuries ranging from golfer’s elbow to rotator cuff tears.
A Full Range of Orthopedic and Sports Medicine Care for Your Sports Injury
At Sports Medicine Oregon, we understand that every sports injury is unique. With this in mind, we take a personalized and methodical approach to your sports injury and then design a plan of action. After all we are here to treat our patients not just their symptoms.
The Sports Medicine Oregon orthopedic care capabilities include everything from cutting edge regenerative injections and arthroscopic surgery to individually tailored strength training and physical therapy regimens. A treatment program focused on pain alone won’t remedy the underlying problem.
So what are your treatment options? It all starts with a detailed history of your problem and an exam by a board certified orthopedic or sports medicine physician and ends with a personalized plan of action specific to your sports injury.
At Sports Medicine Oregon, we’ve treated thousands of athletic injuries and it all starts with a thorough history of your problem and examination at our state of the art facility. We will diagnose the root cause of your pain and then design a strategy to help you restore your active lifestyle.
Simply put: Different types of pain indicate different types of sports injuries. What is your body trying to tell you? Your specific symptoms and your activity level will give us a better idea of the treatment options to discuss with you.
Once we’ve established your diagnosis, one of our board certified orthopedic and sports medicine physicians will assess and diagnose the cause of your symptoms. An accurate diagnosis is paramount to the shortest possible road to recovery.
Return to Play Guidelines
Understanding how often and how aggressively you can go about your normal activity regimen will depend on your injury, your lifestyle, and your pain. Typically, many common aches and pains can be adequately managed with strengthening and activity adjustments. At Sports Medicine Oregon, we call these personally tailored instructions your “Return to Play” guidelines.
Integrated Physical Therapy
Have you adjusted your lifestyle but your pain or injury is still holding you back? Physical therapy can strengthen the surrounding muscles and increase flexibility. It is often a necessary step to take when your underlying injury is capable of healing without surgical intervention. Our on staff physical therapists will work directly with your physician to assure that your time is well spent.
Today, we are witnessing a true renaissance in sports medicine treatment and the latest biotech solutions can regrow healthy tissue and set you free from chronic pain and joint instability. Is platelet rich plasma (PRP), prolotherapy, or stem cell (bone marrow aspirate concentrate) therapy right for you?
Imaging and Interpretation
If the previous treatment options haven’t adequately managed your symptoms it may be time to pinpoint the structural cause of your pain. Fortunately, we can image and diagnose many injuries on-site at our cutting edge medical complex.
Minimally Invasive Corrective Surgery
Unlike more invasive “open” surgery, arthroscopic surgery involves less pain, less swelling and shorter recovery times. After outpatient arthroscopy, patients return home the same day and can be back to their active lifestyle in a minimal amount of time.
Total Joint Replacement
Are you experiencing bone grinding in your joints or bone on bone pain? If joint preservation techniques haven’t alleviated your pain, joints damaged by severe arthritis are often treated with total joint replacement surgery as a last resort. If it turns out that this is the best option for you, our board certified orthopedic surgeons are leaders in the field.
Concussion Symptoms, Muscle Pain, Or Reduced Range Of Motion: Time To See An Orthopedist
There are many common sports injuries, each with a range of symptoms and degrees of severity. Whether it’s a meniscus tear, throwing injury, or a stress fracture, it’s important to understand exactly what these symptoms signify. What is your body trying to tell you?
Pain associated with less severe injuries (namely bumps and bruises) can often be managed with rest, ice, compression, and elevation. However, structural injuries and more severe conditions will require professional sports medicine treatment. Is your pain the result of a mild sprain or a potentially more serious injury?
How to Tell If You Have a Concussion?
Concussions are by and large one of the most common sports injuries. Concussion symptoms include headache, nausea, mental “fogginess” (even amnesia of the event), ringing in the ears, slurred speech, and fatigue. It’s important to note that some concussion symptoms may not begin until days or even weeks after the initial concussion.
Joint Pain and Swelling?
Inflammation and localized pain are both typical sports injury symptoms, especially with sprains and contusions. Those suffering from tendonitis may experience general pain during athletic activity but not while the tendons are relaxed. In more severe cases -- such as with tennis elbow and golfer’s elbow for example -- the pain will also occur while the arm is at rest.
Weakness? Joint Instability?
Tingling in the fingers and wrists as well as sharp joint pain are associated with an array of bone, connective, tissue, and nerve injuries and conditions. Hand weakness, weak grip, and numbness in hands are also common nerve compression symptoms. Similarly, fractures and tendon injuries may make finger flexing difficult leading to reduced joint mobility.
Limited Range of Motion? Is This a Throwing Injury?
Sprains can cause the joint to feel unstable and with more severe sprains and ligament damage it may be difficult to bear weight on the injured joint or limb. Repeated ligament and tendon injuries can lead to chronic joint instability. Jumper’s Knee (also known as runner’s knee) is caused by inflammation of the patellar tendon and over time patellar tendinitis may weaken the tendon and result in a patellar tendon rupture or partial patellar tendon tear. If you are experiencing pain while pitching and diminished velocity you may have be suffering from shoulder or elbow ligament damage.
Popping Joints? Felt or Heard a Pop During Your Injury?
Bones popping and clicking joints (known medically as crepitus) is a common and often harmless occurrence, however, at times these sounds could signify a sports injury. For example, during a tendon tear, cartilage tear, or bone fracture many patients report hearing or feeling a popping sensation. In fact, this audible “pop” is exceedingly common with meniscus tears, ACL injuries, and Achilles tendon ruptures. If your joints are locking up and popping, this may be the result of loose bodies in the elbow or a cartilage tear. That said, locked knee is common following a severe meniscus tear.
Best Sports Medicine Treatment Options
Depending on your age and activity you may not need to undergo surgery. Fortunately, at Sports Medicine Oregon, we offer many non surgical treatment procedures for your sports injury including personalized rehabilitation at our state-of-the-art outpatient physical therapy center and the latest regenerative treatments, such as PRP injections.
Your specific symptoms as well as your lifestyle activity level will give us a clearer idea of the sports medicine treatment options to consider moving forward.
Accurate Diagnosis and Return to Play Guidelines
Once your athletic injury has been assessed and diagnosed by our board certified orthopedic and sports medicine surgeons, we can determine your Return to Play guidelines. These treatments will establish specific rules regarding your expectations and limitations until you return to your active lifestyle.
While competitive athletes and active individuals may need surgery, less active individuals often benefit from the same techniques used to treat high-level athletes, such as physical therapy, strength training, and assistive braces alongside general lifestyle adjustments. In fact, connective tissue sports injuries often respond well to nonsurgical treatment.
From physical therapy exercises and flexibility training to a basic knee immobilizer, your nonsurgical options will be determined by the severity of your injury or joint inflammation. With this in mind, those in the preliminary stages of osteoarthritis can greatly benefit from the full spectrum of nonsurgical sports medicine treatments.
Physical therapy exercises for injuries will allow you to strengthen the surrounding muscles and also increase range of motion. Depending on your sports injury we will create a strength training regimen based on you and your activity goals.
For decades, patients were strictly limited to shots designed to treat pain and inflammation (namely cortisone injections and steroid injections). Today, that has all changed and there are many biological regeneration solutions to regrow and build joint tissues. Come in today and let’s talk about your regenerative injection options and PRP injections.
When Surgery Is The Best Option For Your Sports Injury
Let’s say you’ve changed your lifestyle, tried physical therapy, and your sports injury is still holding you back. If your symptoms cannot be managed with nonsurgical treatments or your functional plateau is keeping you from your active lifestyle it may be time to consider surgery.
Bone Fracture Surgery
From Boxer’s fractures to hip fractures, we treat a wide range of common sports injury fractures. The specific surgery will depend on the placement and severity of the fracture. More severe fractures will requires a series of surgical screws, plates, and other stabilizers.
Sports Medicine Knee Surgery
Nonsurgical sports medicine treatment options suffice for many less active or older individuals following ligament injuries, however, competitive athletes will often require surgery to compete at the highest level. We specialize treatment options for many knee sports injuries, including meniscus repairs and ACL reconstruction.
Sports Medicine Shoulder and Elbow Surgery
Diminished velocity is common with many arm sports injuries. To treat the underlying bone or tissue damage we have a range of sports medicine treatments including Tommy John surgery, rotator cuff surgery, UCL surgery, nerve compression surgery, and others.
Sports Medicine Hand and Wrist Surgery
The hands and wrists are routinely damaged during competition and training and many sports injuries will require profession sports medicine treatment. Whether you’re experiencing flexor tendon injuries or a diminished grip strength due to nerve compression we have a host of cutting edge treatment options to consider.
Arthroscopic Surgery: Non-Invasive Surgery For Sports Injury
Today there are many outpatient surgery options and typically patients are free to return home just hours after the procedure. Unlike more invasive procedures, arthroscopic surgery doesn’t involve large open incisions and results in less swelling and faster recoveries. These arthroscopic surgeries are geared toward tendons, ligaments, and joint preservation not joint replacement.
What exactly is arthroscopic surgery? During a typical procedure, the surgeon guides a small camera (arthroscope -- hence the name) through the elbow via a small incision and uses this visual data and surgical instruments to diagnose and treat the underlying cause of your pain.
Less Pain and Swelling
General swelling and pain after arthroscopic surgery should be expected. Unlike traditional arthrotomy surgeries (also known as “open surgeries”) arthroscopic surgery involves small incisions to treat the underlying problem. This means less swelling, less damage to normal tissue, and less pain after your procedure.
Smaller incisions often enable shorter recovery times allowing you to get back to your normal daily activity faster.
Decreased Risk of Infection
These smaller incisions minimize the overall healing time and also reduce patient’s risk of infection.
Almost all arthroscopic surgeries are performed as outpatient procedures and patients are normally free to return home 1-2 hours after the surgery.
What Is the Recovery Time for Arthroscopic Surgery?
Now that the surgery is over, it’s time for the healing process to begin. Knowing what to anticipate during the recovery process can help keep us set realistic expectations beforehand. How long does it take to recover from arthroscopic surgery?
Patients are able to return home an hour or two after surgery. At home, it’s important to keep the surgically treated limb elevated and apply ice packs as needed to minimize any swelling and pain. Your doctor will prescribe medication to help minimize pain after the procedure.
After elbow surgery or shoulder surgery, your arm will be immobilized for the first week to allow the joint to heal properly. Following ankle, knee or hip surgery, you may need crutches to assist with walking. However many individuals are able to walk on the repaired limb within a few days. Those with less strenuous “desk” jobs can go back to work a few days following surgery. Depending on the surgery, a full arthroscopic surgery recovery may take several months although many procedures are fully healed in a matter of weeks.
Physical therapy is crucial to arthroscopic surgery recovery and your doctor will design a regimen for your specific injury. Exercises after arthroscopic surgery are designed to strengthen the muscles surrounding the joint and also increase flexibility to restore your active lifestyle.