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by David Merson, DPT, ATC

I recently attended a local sports medicine symposium and would like to share some information that will bring you, as a patient, client, and consumer of sports medicine services up to date on important topics.
At this symposium, health care professionals who specialize in the treatment of sport related injuries spoke about topics ranging from children in sports, recent trends in biological injections, and dance injuries.  With the wide range of topics, I have come up with a few  that you may find interesting and informative.
Post-Surgical Treatment:  Keep in mind that surgical precautions and post-operative protocols are designed considering the physiology of tissue healing.   The body is great at repairing itself, but that requires a defined period of time and a graded increase in activity.   Sometimes getting back to activity too quickly may cause unnecessary delay, pain, and dysfunction.  Please consult with your physician, physical therapist, and/or athletic trainer for guidance in the rehabilitation schedule.
Concussions:  This is one of the hottest topics and studied areas in sports medicine these days.  Recent events and research have made the long-term and potential debilitating effects more apparent.  I would encourage all of the parents and student athletes reading this blog to become aware of the signs and symptoms of a concussion and seek the appropriate medical care following such an injury.  These include: headache, dizziness, vertigo, nausea, numbness/tingling sensations, blurred vision/trouble seeing, sensitivity to light, ringing in the ears, trouble thinking/deceased mental capacity, fatigue, and irritability/saddness.
Injections that Heal?  Have you heard of PRP yet?  If not, you will. PRP is a new buzz term in the world of sports medicine.  PRP stands for platelet rich plasma.  PRP essentially jump starts the healing process by injecting a patient’s own modified blood sample.  The blood sample contains a large percentage of platelets.  This large percentage of platelets when injected helps to activate the healing process.  This treatment is primarily used as an adjunct therapy when pain, tenderness, and loss of function are present even after typical conservative treatment has failed.
Keep this treatment in mind and be on the look out for other treatment options similar to this in the future.  I will publish a more detailed blog on PRP shortly.
Dr. Merson is a physical therapist at Boston Sports Medicine