Monday, November 25, 2013

Sports Medicine Helps Relieve Plantar Fasciitis

Plantar Fasciitis is a painful condition that occurs when the plantar fascia becomes irritated or inflamed. It is a common injury in the United States. A study has shown that more than 2 million Americans are diagnosed and treated for plantar fasciitis every year. The common symptoms of plantar fasciitis include a sharp pain in the sole of the feet, especially when standing immediately after waking up.

Most cases can be resolved by applying the RICE method (Rest, Ice, Compression, and Elevation) on the affected foot and allowing it to rest. However, some cases of plantar fasciitis become severe and people may need to go to a sports medicine clinic to receive anti-inflammatory shots to reduce the pain. For particularly troublesome cases, people have resorted to orthopedic surgery to cure their ailment.

Seeing as the majority of cases are caused by ill-fitting shoes and strenuous walking, running, or jumping exercises, plantar fasciitis can easily be prevented by avoiding the causes mentioned earlier. People may also consult sports medicine specialists to learn stretches and exercises that build the strength and reduce the stress of the plantar fascia. Sports medicine can also diagnose and treat plantar fasciitis caused by poor gait (the way a person moves on foot).

Sunday, November 10, 2013

Orthopedic Treatment for a Torn Meniscus

It happened so fast. You were running down the court and all you did was stop. Suddenly, you’re on the floor with a sharp pain in your knee. Unfortunately, you may have torn your meniscus.

The meniscus is a small C-shaped piece of cartilage in your knee that keeps the entire knee stable and prevents your knee bones from grinding against each other. Although quite sturdy, the meniscus can be torn by sudden stops, deep squats, and quick pivots.

A meniscus tear can be classified into three categories: partial, moderate, and severe. Depending on the severity of the tear, an orthopedic surgeon can determine if there is a need for surgery or if the injury can heal by itself.

Common symptoms people begin to feel after tearing their meniscus include pain and swelling. For severe meniscus tears, people report feeling knee instability, manifesting as a popping or locking of the knee, or its suddenly “wobbling” and giving way.

Meniscus tears are often mistaken for ACL tears, another type of knee injury, as both injuries tend to happen at the same time. In some cases, both the meniscus and ACL can be torn by the same action. Thus, people who have suffered a suspected knee injury should be brought to an experienced orthopedic surgeon for accurate diagnosis and immediate treatment.