When you work in Sports Medicine, you see many recurring injuries in athletes, regardless of the season. Risk factors for Injury include family history, medical history, age, gender, and activity level.
The term “Sports Injury” really is not limited to athletes, it is the type of injury to the musculoskeletal system commonly seen in athletes and people who are physically active. The musculoskeletal system is the network of muscles, tendons, ligaments, bones, and other tissues that provide the body with stability and enables movement.
Sports injuries can be acute or chronic. Injuries, which can later develop into chronic injuries are often related to overuse and develop gradually over time.
Sprains are caused by overstretched or damaged ligaments that connect bones at the joints.
Muscle Strain involves a torn or damaged muscle.
Dislocation happens when the two bones that come together to form a joint become separated,
Tendinitis is inflammation of a tendon, a flexible band of fibrous tissue that connects muscles to bones.
Bone fracture is a break in a bone that occurs from either a quick, one-time injury, known as an acute fracture, or from repeated stress, known as a stress fracture, or a growth plate fracture in children.
Bursitis is inflammation of the bursae (plural of “bursa”), small, fluid-filled sacs that act as cushions between a bone and other moving parts, such as muscles, tendons, or skin.
Tennis Elbow is when the tendons in the elbow develop small tears and become inflamed, causing pain on the outside of the elbow that extend the wrist.
Golfer’s Elbow Is like tennis elbow except it is an injury to the tendons on the inside part of the elbow that flex the wrist.
Ulnar collateral ligament injury can result from repeated throwing, causing tears to the ligament on the inner part of the elbow, resulting in pain and difficulty throwing effectively.
Lower Back Injury from sports that use repetitive impact, can happen when making twisting motions, or lifting using poor body mechanics.
Neck Injury often happens in contact sports, like football or wrestling, when the cervical spine (neck) is at higher risk of injury.
Sciatica feels like pain radiating from the lower spine down the back of your leg. Sciatica occurs when the sciatic nerve is compressed by a bone spur, herniated disc or spinal stenosis. Pregnant women are also at increased risk for developing sciatic pain.
Always see a doctor if you develop:
- Sudden, severe pain in the low back or a leg and numbness or muscle weakness in a leg.
- Pain after a sudden injury, such as a traffic accident.
- Trouble controlling bowels or bladder.
Upper Back Injury can involve rib fracture and intercostal neuralgia as well as intercostal muscle strains in sports that involve rotation of the torso.
Rotator cuff injury is damage to the muscles and tendons that stabilize the shoulder joint. These injuries happen when the tendons or bursae near the joint become inflamed from overuse or a sudden injury.
Impingement happens when the top of the shoulder blade puts pressure on the soft tissues beneath it when the arm is lifted.
Shoulder instability happens when the round end of the upper arm bone is forced out of its shallow socket, either partially or completely, causing the tendons, ligaments, and muscles of the shoulder to become stretched or torn.
Groin pull involves the adductor muscles of the thigh, which allow you to close your legs.
Hamstring strain happens when one or more of these muscles that run down the back of your leg, from your thigh to your knee gets stretched too far and starts to tear.
Shin splints Is a stress reaction to the tibia which is the large bone in the lower leg. This can progress to a stress fracture if it is not treated properly. Runners and dancers are at higher risk for developing shin splints.
Runner’s knee also called patellofemoral pain syndrome, is a condition which causes pain or tenderness close to, or under the kneecap (patella) at the front of the knee.
Jumper’s knee also known as patellar tendinitis, is a condition where the tendon that attaches the patella to the leg is inflamed.
Torn ligaments can be a complete or partial tear. A ligament tear can happen after a sudden movement, fall, or blow to the body.
Meniscal tear can occur with any activity that causes you to forcefully twist or rotate your knee. The Meniscal cartilage is a shock absorber in the knee. Even kneeling, deep squatting or lifting something heavy can sometimes lead to a torn meniscus.
In older adults, degenerative changes of the knee can contribute to a torn meniscus with little or no trauma.
Tendon tears tend to be more common in middle-aged people who play sports that involve running and jumping. They often happen because of a forceful landing and sometimes from an awkward jump.