Can I visit a sports medicine clinic?
You certainly don’t have to be an athlete to visit a sports medicine clinic, but “athlete” is a relative term. An athlete could be someone’s eight year old son who seems like they might be the future soccer star but is playing in pee wee soccer. An athlete might be a construction worker who lifts bricks and sheet rock all day long, or, an athlete might be someone who’s retired and just likes to walk a couple miles every day. The idea of orthopedic surgery in sports medicine is that you’re getting people back doing activities that they love to do, so that they can stay active and stay healthy.
What is orthopedic surgery?
Orthopedic surgery is the branch of surgery concerned with conditions involving the musculoskeletal system. Orthopedic surgeons examine, diagnose, and treat diseases and injuries of the musculoskeletal system with surgery and corrective mechanical devices. They take care of bones, joints, ligaments, tendons, muscles and nerves - everything that allows you to move, work and be active. Orthopedic surgeons use both surgical and nonsurgical means to treat any musculoskeletal trauma, spine diseases, sports injuries, degenerative diseases, infections and congenital disorders.
There are more than 28 million Americans who develop some type of musculoskeletal problem each year. These injuries include, but are not limited to, sprains, strains, and overuse injuries, in addition to shoulder and back pain. Orthopedic surgeons play a critical role in the diagnosis, treatment, prevention and rehabilitation of all musculoskeletal conditions. They work in both hospitals and specialized practices to perform treatments and procedures. They handle everything within a wide range, from minor issues such as a sprained ankle to complex procedures such as a hip or knee replacement.
Who should see a sports medicine professional?
Sports medicine is not only for athletes, orthopedic surgeons treat anything affecting the physical movement and quality of life for a patient. Sports related injuries, such as a sprain or broken bone that happen because of physical activity can happen to anyone regardless of age or fitness level. Orthopedic surgeons are skilled in sports medicine and can help prevent and treat injuries that affect the body’s flexibility, mobility and strength. Just as important, these specialists can provide significant information about how to exercise properly and make the most of your body’s physical capabilities and limitations, so you can pursue the activities you enjoy in the safest way possible.
Sports medicine is for everyone. Whether you are a competitive athlete or a just a normal person who is injured, orthopedic surgeons see everyone with a wide range of physical activity levels. While orthopedic surgeons are familiar with all aspects of the musculoskeletal system, many orthopedists specialize in certain areas, such as the foot and ankle, hand, shoulder and elbow, spine, hip, and the knee.
Orthopedic surgeons may also choose to focus in specific fields like pediatrics, trauma, reconstructive surgery, oncology, or sports medicine. Anyone suffering any physical ailment to the musculoskeletal system should consult with an orthopedic surgeon, regardless of whether that individual is an athlete or not.