Stories about: sports injury

Concussions: Treatment and return-to-play guidelines

Dr. O'Brien concussions athletes lead image
PHOTO ILLUSTRATION: PATRICK BIBBINS/BOSTON CHILDREN’S HOSPITAL

The end of summer and beginning of fall marks a time when physicians and athletic trainers begin to see a rise in concussions from athletes competing in both soccer and football. Though the football-concussion link is well-known, soccer also carries a significant risk for athletes.

In soccer, concussions are often the result of head-to-head contact or head-to-ground contact after an awkward fall. With players constantly leaping into the air to compete for lofted balls, it’s not surprising that these types of concussions regularly occur. Michael O’Brien, MD, director of the Sports Concussion Clinic at Boston Children’s Hospital, details the updated protocols for return to play after concussion and what physicians and trainers should be aware of during the soccer season.

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Diagnosing and treating nerve injuries in children and adolescents

Dr. Andrea Bauer nerve injuries Notes blog
PHOTO ILLUSTRATION: PATRICK BIBBINS/BOSTON CHILDREN’S HOSPITAL

Nerve injuries in children and adolescents aren’t all that common, and may be difficult to diagnose. When these injuries do occur, the referral process can also present further complications.

“With peripheral nerve injuries, it’s common to think a patient needs a neurosurgeon or plastic surgeon,” says Andrea Bauer, MD, an orthopedic surgeon in the Hand & Orthopedic Upper Extremity Program at Boston Children’s Hospital. “But because of the legacy Dr. Peter Waters has built, the specialists in our Orthopedic Center actually have a great amount of experience with these injuries.”

Bauer’s experience treating a wide range of nerve injuries both surgically and non-surgically in pediatric populations has helped her understand the difficulties that often arise in both diagnosis and treatment. Here, she provides insight on what PCPs and pediatricians should be aware of when it comes to nerve injuries in children.

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Health consequences of low energy availability in female athletes

Ackerman RED-S female athletes energy deficiency sports

For all young athletes, having the necessary energy to participate in sports — while also supporting a growing body — is imperative to their overall health. The Female Athlete Triad is a well-known consequence of low energy availability in female athletes and can result in menstrual dysfunction and decreased bone mineral density.

Recently, the focus has turned from the Triad to a more inclusive term; Relative Energy Deficiency in Sport, or “RED-S.” This syndrome also appears to be a result of low energy availability, but has health consequences other than menstrual dysfunction and bone health in females and acknowledges that relative energy deficiency can happen in males.

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Does sports specialization lead to increased injury rates in youth?

Kocher sports specialization and injury risk Notes blog

Sports specialization has become increasingly common amongst young athletes, as have the rates of both orthopedic injuries and major injuries such as ACL tears. These concerning trends are not coincidental, reports Mininder Kocher, MD, M.P.H, an orthopedic surgeon and the associate director of Boston Children’s Sports Medicine Division, in a recent presentation to the American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons (AAOS).

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