Sports injuries are most commonly sustained during sports activities but can also occur due to trauma in other forms. A sports man is more susceptible to sports injury in case of contact sports or due to lack of
Regular exercise or practice
Proper stretching & warm up
Sports injuries are seen mainly in young active adults. With age the flexibility of the musculoskeletal system decreases and hence becomes more susceptible for injury to muscles, tendons and ligaments.
Sports injury can be acute after a high impact injury leading to dislocation of the joint, tear of a ligament or rupture of a tendon. Chronic injuries happen due to regular low impact injury to a particular tissue leading to inflammation of the area and constant nagging pain. Most common type of chronic sports injuries are tennis elbow and golfer’s elbow.
Most common type of sports injuries are sprain of the ligaments and strain of the muscles and tendons. These types of sports injuries cause acute pain and swelling. Rest along with common painkillers are sufficient for treatment.
More severe type of sports injuries are ligament tear, joint dislocation and tendon rupture.
Sports injuries are most commonly diagnosed clinically and confirmed after a MRI.
Sports injuries are commonly treated with arthroscopic surgery. Arthroscopy is the surgical technique of looking into a joint with the use of a scope. This is also referred to as key-hole surgery. An arthroscope consists of a lens system connected to a monitor where whole joint is visualised.
This has the advantage of going into the joint without disturbing and cutting the tissues around the joint. Recovery is faster, stiches are fewer, minimal blood loss and almost negligible chance of infection.
Anterior Cruciate Ligament
Anterior Cruciate Ligament (ACL) tear is the most common type of sports injury needing surgical management. Anterior Cruciate Ligament injuries are common in sports which need fast running with quick change in directions such as footballers, rugby players and tennis & badminton players.
ACL along with other ligaments of the knee joint such as Posterior Cruciate Ligament (PCL) and Medial & Lateral Collateral Ligament (MCL&LCL) functions to stabilise the otherwise inherently unstable knee joint. ACL injury of the knee joint may be associated with injury of the other ligaments. Injury to the Meniscus, the cushioning pad between bones of the knee joint is more commonly injured along with the Anterior Cruciate Ligament.
Pain along with instability and apprehension of buckling of knee joint especially while using stairs is the main symptom of ACL tear.
Injury to the ACL is treated with arthroscopic reconstruction of the ligament with a tendon graft. There are few tendons in the human body which can be harvested and used as graft to replace the torn ligament. Tendon taken from the patient’s same or other leg is prepared and passed through tunnel made in the bones forming the knee joint and fixed.
After a precise and rigorous rehabilitation programme, the athlete becomes fit to resume his/her sports activities.