Sports Medicine

Get back in the game.

An injury at the gym, on the court or even during a game of touch football in the backyard, could land you in the office of one of our sports medicine physicians or orthopedic surgeons.

What Is Sports Medicine

Sports medicine is a subspecialty of emergency medicine, family practice, internal medicine, physical medicine, rehabilitation and pediatrics. It deals with continuous care not just in sports but also in the injuries caused by exercise-related injuries. Sports medicine can be for the ongoing care for enhanced health and fitness and prevention and management of injury and illnesses.

At Palm Beach Gardens Medical Center, the main goal of sports medicine is to promote safe and effective exercise for people to achieve their personal fitness goals. Orthopedic sports medicine covers a wide range of conditions and is a combination of different specific principles, such as the following:

  • Sports science
  • Exercise physiology
  • Orthopedics
  • Biomechanics
  • Sports nutrition
  • Sports psychology

What Is a Sports Medicine Physician?

A sports medicine physician has knowledge and experience in exercise physiology, biomechanics, nutrition, psychology, physical rehabilitation and epidemiology. Our sports medicine physician in Palm Beach Gardens provides comprehensive medical care for athletes and sports teams and active individuals who aim to maintain a healthy lifestyle.

Difference Between a Sports Medicine Physician and an Orthopedic Surgeon

While both work with the musculoskeletal system, bones, muscles, joints, tendons and ligaments, sports medicine focuses on the nonsurgical sports injury treatments of injuries and illnesses, and orthopedic surgeons cover the surgical treatments. Most sports- and exercise-related injuries are nonsurgical, so the sports medicine doctor can usually cover that. When the injury calls for surgery, the sports injury doctor will recommend visiting a sports medicine orthopedic surgeon or any other professional who can help. Our team of professionals in sports medicine at Palm Beach Gardens consists of physical therapists, nutritionists, sports medicine specialists and orthopedists.

Common Athletic Injuries

Athletic injuries occur when not warming up properly before exercising, using inappropriate equipment or using the wrong technique in exercising, pushing yourself too hard or may be caused by an accident such as a fall or heavy blow. Children are more at risk for athletic injuries, but adults can get them too, especially when they are not regularly active, didn’t warm up properly before exercise or play contact sports.

Common athletic injuries include:

  • Sprains and strains
  • Back pain
  • Bone injuries
    • Fracture
    • Dislocation
  • Hamstring injuries
  • Head injuries
  • Heel pain
  • Swollen joints
    • Bursitis
    • Tendonitis, Achilles tendonitis
    • Tennis elbow
  • Knee pain
    • Runner’s knee
    • Cartilage damage
    • Knee ligament damage, such as torn anterior cruciate ligament
  • Shoulder pain
  • Skin injuries

Common Sports Injury Treatments

The PRICE method can treat mild sports injuries like sprains and strains. PRICE stands for protection, rest, ice, compression and elevation.

  • Protection – protect the affected area by providing support.
  • Rest – avoid strenuous activities until your injury is resolved.
  • Ice – apply an ice pack to the affected region for 15-20 minutes every two to three hours.
  • Compression – use elastic compression bandages to limit swelling.
  • Elevation – keep your injury raised level to your heart or higher. This can help with the swelling of the injured body part.

    Sports injury treatment options for other injuries include:

  • Medications – include pain relievers such as paracetamol, ibuprofen and other nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs).
  • Immobilization – use slings, splints and casts to reduce movement of the affected area.
  • Physiotherapy – to improve the range of motion, strengthen the surrounding muscles and return to normal function using massage, manipulation and exercises.
  • Corticosteroid injection – to relieve severe or persistent inflammation.
  • Surgery and procedures – for severe injuries such as badly broken bones using wires, plates, screws or rods.

    When to go to the ER and when to see a sports injury doctor

    If you have a significant injury, with severe pain, swelling, numbness or an inability to put any weight on the injured area, it’s usually best to go to the emergency room.

    If the injury doesn’t seem severe, rest at home and call your sports injury doctor for guidance and a possible referral to a sports medicine specialist. You can even use our online Find a Physician tool to find a sports medicine specialist who can work with your specific needs.

    If your sports injury looks or feels severe, make an appointment to see your sports injury doctor. Seek emergency care if the injured joint shows the following signs:

  • Severe swelling and pain
  • Visible lumps, bumps or other deformities
  • Popping or crunching sounds when you use the joint
  • Weakness or inability to put weight on the joint
  • Instability

    Also, seek emergency attention if you experience any of the following after an injury:

  • Difficulty breathing
  • Dizziness
  • Fever

  • Serious sports injuries can require surgery and physical therapy. If the injury doesn’t heal within two weeks, contact your sports medicine doctor for an appointment.

    Sports Injury Prevention

    Cold muscles are prone to overstretching and tears, so correctly stretch and warm up before exercising to avoid injuries. You can also do the following to avoid exercise- and sports-related injuries:

  • Have the proper equipment
  • Have the proper technique
  • Know when to stop
  • Cool down after exercising
  • Ease into exercise

    Sports Medicine at Palm Beach Gardens

    The orthopedic program at Palm Beach Gardens is founded on experience. Our focused, multidisciplinary team includes internists, anesthesiologists, sports medicine specialists, sports orthopedic surgeons, nurses and occupational and physical therapists. Working together with you, we’ll develop a personalized treatment plan to deliver comprehensive care, from diagnosis through recovery.

    Speak with an Orthopedic Service Line Director

    Fill out a contact form and we’ll connect you to our Orthopedic Navigator.

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