At Hanover Sports Medicine, our Richmond, Mechanicsville, and Hanover, VA patients have benefited from our expert treatment since 1998. From sports physicals to physical therapy and more, we have provided the very specific care that sports injuries require, not to mention education about the nature of sports medicine. If you are a new patient or have questions about this branch of medicine, read on for more information.
How is a sports medicine physician different from an orthopedic surgeon? The main difference is that sports medicine physicians specialize in treating injuries and disease without orthopedic surgery. Nine in 10 sports injuries do not need surgery.
A sports medicine physician can help you function at your peak and work around any limits or disabilities. This means less time away from sports, work or school.
What treatments do sports medicine physicians provide?
Sports medicine physicians specialize in non-surgical treatments. These can include:
- Physical therapy
- Medicines, including injections
- Exercise and training – For injury prevention, rehabilitation or better performance
- Occupational therapy – For everyday or work activities
A sports medicine specialist also does sports physicals (pre-sports examinations) and can evaluate you before you start an exercise program. If you are injured in sports or an accident or have pain with sports or other activities, a sports medicine physician can help.
Sports medicine physicians work closely with other doctors and health care providers, including physical therapists and other medical specialists. If you do need surgery, your sports medicine doctor can refer you to an orthopedic surgeon.
What injuries do sports medicine physicians treat?
A sports medicine physician can treat:
- Injuries and problems with bones, joints, muscles, ligaments and tendons – This includes fractures that don’t require surgery.
- Problems caused by sports, accidents, arthritis or overuse
- Concussions and other head injuries
- Athletes with chronic conditions, such as asthma or diabetes, or short-term illnesses such as mono
A sports medicine physician can advise on:
- Return to play after an injury or illness
- Safe training and exercises
- Nutrition and supplements
- General performance issues
Sports medicine physicians do pre-sports physical exams. They work with athletic teams to prevent and treat injuries, advising athletic trainers, coaches, physical therapists and other staff how to keep athletes fit and safe.
A sports medicine physician can also work with school coaches, administrators and trainers to care for young athletes.
Do sports medicine physicians only treat athletes?
No. A sports medicine physician is a good choice if you:
- Are just starting an exercise program
- Exercise for fitness or recreation, such as doing yoga, CrossFit or running a few times a week
- Have arthritis, and need help dealing with pain and getting more active
- Are a “weekend warrior” who plays hard, but not as often as you used to
- Have a physical job, such as construction, factory work, house cleaning or working with animals or children
Find a Sports Medicine Physician
Do you want to achieve peak athletic performance? Worried you might have an injury? Maybe you need a physical before starting a new exercise program or sports season.