Fellowship-trained and specialty-trained sports medicine doctors are medical specialists who care for amateur and professional athletes as well as people who participate in sports just for enjoyment, exercise, and health. These doctors and surgeons have gone beyond medical school, studying the interactions between medicine, sports, and athletes as well as the types of injuries and conditions athletes sustain. Offering this specialized medical care also means sports medicine doctors must have a deep level of understanding of the entire musculoskeletal system.
Sometimes, sports medicine doctors are called on to treat athletes who have suffered a traumatic sports injury. Many times, these are high-impact injuries caused by falling, being kicked, or colliding with another player. Typical sports injuries these sports medicine doctors see include leg fractures, ankle sprains, and knee injuries, such as an ACL tear or meniscus tear. Sometimes, these traumatic injuries require orthopaedic surgery.
After a doctor has diagnosed a sports-related injury or condition, the first treatment solutions they consider are nonsurgical options. These may include physical therapy, a type of medication, or another therapy that can enhance healing. However, sometimes the injuries are too severe and must be treated with orthopaedic surgery, like ligament reconstruction.
Today, there are many state-of-the-art medical tools available that surgeons and doctors utilize. For instance, some surgeons may use robotic-assisted or computer-assisted devices to perform knee replacement surgery. These devices help provide optimum outcomes as well as minimize potential complications.
Sports medicine surgeons and doctors are there to help people not only get better but also to properly treat them. This includes providing patients with the individualized care and rehabilitation they need so that it is possible for them to heal and return to the sports they love.