If you’re an athlete who loves to play your sport, you don’t want an injury to set you back and make you sit out a season. Finding the right medical professional is part of the equation of staying injury-free.
Our board-certified orthopedic surgeons at Coastal Empire Orthopedics have advanced training in sports medicine that makes them ideal to be your partner in your musculoskeletal health. They’re trained in treating sports injuries and in helping to prevent future injuries. Following are four key issues that sports medicine addresses that are critical to you as an athlete.
New approaches to healing from sports injuries
Our board-certified physicians use the most advanced treatments available in sports medicine orthopedics today. New regenerative medicine approaches are diminishing the need for surgery in some soft tissue injuries.
Researchers have found that platelet-rich plasma (PRP) treatment can help athletes heal more quickly from some soft tissue injuries (muscle, tendon, or ligament injury) than with traditional treatment alone. Depending on your health and the specific injury, many tennis elbow cases, other tendonitis cases, sprains of soft tissue, or muscle strain can be treated with PRP.
PRP rushes a mixture of your blood with a large concentration of platelets rich in nutrients and growth factors that help speed healing. The treatment can alleviate inflammation at the site of the injury, help reduce pain, and jump-start the healing process.
Once you’ve sustained an injury, you don’t want a repeat occurrence. How can you help prevent that? Forming a relationship with a sports medicine physician can help you prevent future injuries. Your Coastal Empire Orthopedics physician provides counseling on warm-ups, conditioning, and training regimens.
Overuse injuries are common in athletes. Your doctor understands the mechanics of how you’re using your body when you play your sport. He provides stretches and exercises for you to continue strengthening the muscles surrounding the injured area and provides instructions on how to keep the injured area safe in the future.
It’s no secret that proper nutrition is a key to athletic performance. You have anecdotal evidence from playing when you didn’t have enough protein or carbohydrates to sustain you through a long tennis match or basketball game.
Sports medicine physicians understand how food selection, timing eating, amount of food consumed, and supplements affect your performance. Your physician can review your nutritional habits and advise you on nutrition for optimal athletic performance.
Return to play decisions
For athletes on teams, the pressure to return to play after being injured can be intense. Our board-certified orthopedic surgeons trained in sports medicine can provide an impartial and objective assessment of whether you’re ready to return to play. He can confirm whether you’ve recovered enough for sport-specific function; for example, can your knee sustain you on the basketball court without further injury? He can tell you whether it’s safe to play with a modification like a brace.
Your Coastal Empire Orthopedics physician understands the risks you face in playing too soon after being injured. He can evaluate the degree of risk, which depends on the sport, your position if you’re on a team, and your level of play. Your physician explains when it’s safe to return to the field or court and why rest is necessary. He also explains the consequences if you return to the field before you’re ready and have been approved to play.
Call Coastal Empire Orthopedics today for an appointment to help ensure your musculoskeletal health as an athlete.