Vacation days and the peak holiday season invites a lot of people into the Orthopaedic or the sports medicine department. Sports injuries, in principle, are the same as any other injury to the body and should not be neglected and should be treated in due time.
These injuries can be broadly classified in to the following three groups.
- Acute intrinsic injuries
- Acute extrinsic injuries
- Chronic injuries.
Acute extrinsic injuries occur when a person is injured by a direct blow, usually resulting in a bruise, swelling or an abrasion.
Acute intrinsic injuries usually occur secondary to the aforementioned injuries as these results from failure of function due to excessive loading on a normal body, or due to a weakened body bearing a normal load. Chronic injuries are repetitive and stress injuries.
Anatomically speaking, the injury could be sustained anywhere in the musculoskeletal system, comprising of bones, ligaments, tendons, muscles, bursae and cartilage. Each sub unit of this system is prone for injury unless proper exercise technique and form is maintained.
Following are some sports injuries, one might sustain while enjoying the spectacular resorts, exquisite guest houses, beautiful sandy beaches and the warm, clear waters Maldives has to offer.
Tennis Elbow: Inflammation of the extensor muscles in the arm. Tennis leg: Rupture of the medial side of the calf muscle (Medial head of the Gastrocnemius muscle). This is caused due to sudden and severe acceleration.
The most common complaints of amateur and professional rowers are intercostal muscle tears and tendon problems, which could lead to respiratory difficulty if the patient is not treated and the condition, taken very lightly.
Groin injuries, Fractures, Muscle strains and Ligament sprains of usually the anterior cruciate ligament (present in the knee) are seen among professional athletes and also among fitness enthusiasts. Turf toe and nerve injuries secondary to constant kicking are also commonly seen in footballers.
Shoulder injuries are more common while swimming. Impingement injury to the Rotator Cuff muscles is not uncommon.
Hand injuries are common, especially to the inter-phalangeal joints (also known as the “finger joints”). Patella tendinopathy (Injury to the knee bone) is a common complaint after a strenuous Volley match.
Wake boarding and Water skiing
Both these sports have a vast range of injuries associated with it as these are high velocity sports. Injuries to the hip, including dislocations, minor fractures, sprains and strains of almost any compartment of the body could be associated to a high velocity sports injury.
IMMEDIATE TREATMENT OF INJURIES
In acute injuries, till you are able to seek professional medical help, always follow the PRICE rule.
- Protect a previously injured/ weakened limb or joint by wearing guards and supports.
- Rest as soon as you sustain the injury. Do not continue playing with the injury.
- Ice: Apply an Ice bag to the injured area. If ice bags are not available, apply ice cubes wrapped in a piece of cloth
- Compression of the injured limb/ joint by wrapping with a crepe bandage, in distal to proximal direction. (From the most peripheral part of the body towards the center of the body)
- Elevation of the injured limb on pillows or slings would help with resolving of swelling.
The PRICE rule would help in the initial management of minor injuries in the initial 24 to 48 hours.
These sports injuries could be prevented by proper stretching, a good warm up, exercising regularly and using good equipment. Moreover, being cautious of the environment and knowing your personal limits are equally as important. Prevention is always better than a cure.