Sports medicine, also known as sports and exercise medicine (SEM), is a medical specialty that deals with physical activity. The professions’ primary focus is on the treatment and prevention of injuries related to sports and exercise.
After completing medical school, specialty physicians trained in sports medicine are ready to treat any sort of sports related injury. These doctors are able to bridge the gap between science and practice as they promote exercise and a healthy lifestyle.
A specialization in sports medicine may be the doctor’s only specialty, or it may be coupled with a specialization in orthopaedic surgery. Those who also specialize in orthopaedic surgery often see many patients that have sports or activity related injuries. However, they are not limited to these types of injuries and can treat all kinds of patients.
The orthopaedics sector of sports medicine focuses on injuries and diseases in your body’s musculoskeletal system. The musculoskeletal system is made up of your bones, joints, ligaments, tendons, muscles, and nerves, all of which allow you to move, work, and live an active lifestyle.
Some common orthopaedic injuries treated using sports medicine include: rotator cuff injuries, ACL injuries, MCL injuries, tennis elbow, joint dislocation, sprains, etc. Many of these injuries can be treated without surgery, by using medication, exercise and other rehabilitative therapies. If a patient does not respond to these initial treatments surgery may also be recommended. Common surgical procedures include: arthroscopy, fusion, internal fixation, joint replacement, osteotomy, and soft tissue repair.
No matter what type of sports related injury you may have, you will always require the expert care of a sports medicine professional. They have the knowledge to get you back on your feet as soon as possible.