We offer rapid assessment and management of all types of sports injuries. Our team of sports medicine experts are adept in effectively treating injuries resulting from sports, physical activity or trauma. Whether your activities are recreational or professional, we offer triage based critical care in our state-of-the-art facilities. Our orthopaedists, physiotherapists, radiologists and podiatrists work in close collaboration to offer comprehensive care aimed at improving your performance and minimising any comorbidity associated with any injury. Our care team is supported by advanced ICU facilities, modular operating theatres, on-site radiology labs and an in-house rehabilitation centre.
Learn about the basics of sports injuries, their causes, treatment and prevention.
Sports injuries are the injuries that one suffers while participating in a sport, exercise or related physical activity. Sports injuries are highly common among children, athletes or gym-goers. However, adults can also be affected by these problems. The branch of orthopaedics that deal with these injuries is known as sports medicine.
Sports injuries can impact any body part including tendons, ligaments, muscles and bones. Your knees and ankles are more prone to being impacted by an injury than other body parts.
Sports injuries are often characterised by pain, swelling, muscle ache, soreness, decreased strength or speed.
Sports injuries can be caused by the following factors:
- Not warming up before doing extraneous exercise
- Usage of improper tools or equipment
- Applying incorrect techniques
- Overuse or pushing yourself too hard than your capacity
- Training errors such as doing an activity too quickly
- Irregular physical activity
- Being involved in contact sports such as football
There are several different types of sports injuries depending upon the area it affects and its symptoms. Common types include:
Sprains – Sprain is a soft tissue injury resulting from overstretching or tearing of the ligaments.
Strains – Strain is also a soft tissue injury, however, it is caused by a tear in the tendons.
Knee injuries – The knee is a complex joint made up of cartilage, bones, meniscus, ligaments and tendons. Injuries impacting any part of the knee joint are identified as knee injuries. Common knee injuries include fractures, ACL injury, PCL injury and meniscus tear.
Swollen muscles – Swollen muscles or muscle strains are injuries that cause inflammation or swelling in a muscle. It is also sometimes called a pulled muscle.
Achilles tendon rupture – The Achilles tendon is a fibrous cord connecting the muscles in the back of your calf to your heel. A tear or rupture in this cord is known as Achilles tendon rupture. This injury can cause a disability in the movement of your feet and severe pain.
Stress fractures – Stress fractures (broken bones) are cracks or tear in the bones resulting from overuse or repetitive stress. Repeated jumping or running for long distances can cause these fractures.
Rotator cuff injury – Rotator cuff is a group of muscles and tendons in your shoulder joint. The rotator cuff is responsible for keeping your upper arm bone intact in the shallow socket of the shoulder. Strains or tears in this group of muscles that cause severe pain and decreased mobility in your shoulder is known as rotator cuff injury.
Shoulder dislocation – A dislocated shoulder is one when the upper arm bone in your shoulder pops out of the shoulder blade socket.
Shin splints – The shin bone is the large bone in front of the leg below your knee. Any injury that causes pain in the shinbone is called shin splints. It is a common injury among runners and dancers.
Recurrent athletic injuries – Recurrent injuries are the ones that occur in the same body part that has previously sustained an injury.
If you experience an injury while working out, the first step is to stop exercising. Sometimes, the symptoms of an injury are felt several hours after the injury is imposed. In any case, you should immediately without further overuse and rest. It is because continuing to exercise can drastically increase your chances of sustaining long-term damage.
In case of a minor or complex sports injury, you should instantly seek medical intervention. Your healthcare provider will offer a quick response and examine your condition before offering corrective treatments.
Based on the inputs of your healthcare provider, you may also use the traditional P.R.I.C.E. method to alleviate the symptoms of sports injuries.
The treatment of each injury varies as it depends upon the type of injury, affected area, severity of symptoms and the patient’s overall health. Listed below are some common procedures and interventions used as sports injury treatment:
Clinical history and physical examination – Your sports medicine specialist will take your medical history and order a few diagnostic and screening tests such as X-ray and musculoskeletal ultrasound to visualise and examine your injury. The type of tests ordered vary depending on the type of injury.
Medicinal treatment – In cases of minor injuries such as strains and sprains, your healthcare provider may administer anti-inflammatory medications to relieve symptoms and treat the condition.
P.R.I.C.E. method – P.R.I.C.E. stands for Protect, Rest, Ice, Compression and Elevation. This method is useful for treating mild sports injury and reduces swelling and pain.
Immbolisation – In case of stress fractures, your broken bone will be treated by fixing and immobilising it with the use of a ceramic cast or splint.
Surgery – For complex sports injuries such as knee injuries, orthopaedic surgeons may recommend surgical interventions. There are several different types of surgeries done to treat sports injuries. For instance, ACL injury treatment is offered through knee arthroscopy.
Physiotherapy – Physiotherapy, rehabilitation and occupational therapy exercises are often recommended for most sports injuries to restore strength and avoid long-term impacts.
Sometimes, a combination of different lines of treatments is used for effective recovery. Please note that your treatment journey will completely depend upon your injury, extremity of symptoms and other factors.
Sports injuries can be avoided most of the times. Here are some preventive measures you should apply to avoid injuries while engaging in sports, exercise or related physical activity.
Use the proper technique
Learn the right way to do different postures, stances and movements to avoid sports injuries.
Use proper equipment
There are several equipment and tools involved in various activities. Ensure to use them the right way and avoid exertion.
Warming up and stretching before playing sports helps in preventing sports injuries.
Similar to warming up, cooling down or stretching exercises post-workout are equally important for your body.
Resume activity slowly
If you have suffered from a sports injury, you should be slow to resume your physical activity.
Understand your fitness level
You should keep your fitness capacity in check and try not to exceed beyond it quickly to avoid sports injuries.
Watch Mr Maharshi’s treatment experience at the CK Birla Hospital after he suffered from a fractured patella
Watch the ACL repair surgery experience shared by our patient
The treatment of sports injuries depends upon the type of injury, the severity of symptoms and the patient’s overall health. Common lines of treatment include medicinal approach, immobilisation, PRICE method, surgery and other procedures.
PCL (Posterior cruciate ligament) injury is usually treated with a knee arthroscopy procedure. In this procedure, your orthopaedic surgeon makes small incisions on your knee joint to access and reconstruct the affected ligament. It is a minimally invasive procedure that makes use of a medical device called an arthroscope.
An MCL (Medial collateral ligament) injury or tear can be treated with both medical and non-medical interventions. It is mostly treated with anti-inflammatory medications.
The five most common sports injuries are sprains, strains, ACL tear, shin splints and tennis elbow.