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Sports Medicine in New Orleans

What is sports medicine?

Sports medicine is an area of medical practice focused on helping active individuals recover from injury, improve their athletic performance, and avoid future injuries.

You don’t have to be on ESPN to require sports medicine treatment; doctors who specialize in sports medicine treat children injured on the soccer field, women training for a 5K, and men recovering from muscle tears sustained on the golf course.

Sports medicine specialists are trained in musculoskeletal medicine. Those who are also orthopaedic specialists often provide operative treatment as well as less invasive options.

What conditions fall under sports medicine?

Sports medicine addresses both acute and overuse injuries.

Acute injuries occur during physical activity and are often the result of trauma to the affected joint. These types of injuries include:

  • Muscle strains
  • Fractures
  • Torn ACL
  • Ankle sprains
  • Shin splints

Overuse injuries occur when a joint receives significant wear over time, or when there is a degenerative joint condition. These types of injuries include:

  • Rotator cuff tears
  • Tendonitis
  • Stress fractures
  • Hip bursitis

What are some sports medicine treatments?

Treatment depends on your specific set of needs. Because there are so many types of injuries that fall under the umbrella of sports medicine, there is no one-size-fits-all treatment path.

The least invasive treatment option is always the preferred course of action. You might pursue physical therapy, a period of rest and self-care, or certain injected medications. Prescription medication can help address pain, while some men and women respond well to spinal decompression, TENS therapy, or other available options.

If you and your doctor determine that a more involved treatment approach is required, you will explore the available possibilities.

Arthroscopic surgery is one option that uses tiny incisions and surgical tools to repair joint damage without the need for open surgery. Recovery time is short, and the risk of infection is far lower than previous surgical options.

How can I prevent sports medicine injuries?

One of the best reasons to work with a sports medicine specialist is the opportunity for a customized and thorough review of your current health, athletic performance, and your future goals. That information allows your doctor to structure a personalized plan to get you in the best shape possible.

By strengthening specific areas and changing your workouts, you can help prevent future injuries or improve your body’s ability to bounce back. If you’d like to learn more, reach out to the team at Orthopaedic Associates of New Orleans by calling (504) 899-6391 today.