What is Sports Medicine?
A primary care sports medicine physician is a doctor who has specialized in treating and preventing injury to help patients live a healthier life. Sports medicine physicians have completed advanced residency training after medical school and are initially board certified in Emergency medicine, Family Medicine, Internal Medicine, Pediatrics, or Physical Medicine. They then complete an additional one to two year sports medicine fellowship. Sports medicine physicians also must pass a national sports medicine certification test. All of this additional training and specializing makes a sports medicine physician able to effectively treat sports injuries, both musculoskeletal and non-musculoskeletal. Sports Medicine is a recognized subspecialty by the American Board of Medical Subspecialties and by Medicare.
What’s the difference between a sports medicine physician and an orthopedic surgeon?
The difference between a sports medicine physician and an orthopedic surgeon is the training and emphasis of operative treatments options. Sports medicine physicians specialize in non-operative treatments of musculoskeletal conditions, and orthopedic surgeons specialize in operative treatments, in addition to non-operative treatments. However, nearly 9/10 sports injuries are non-surgical, so a sports medicine physician is able to effectively treat most sports injuries without surgical intervention. However, some sport injuries require prompt surgical intervention and sports medicine physicians can get patients to the right surgeon quickly when appropriate. In addition to orthopedic conditions, primary care sports medicine physicians can also treat general medical conditions that interfere with optimal sports performance.
What do sports medicine doctors do?
Sports medicine physicians are able to maximize non-operative treatment, including diagnostic ultrasound, therapeutic ultrasound procedures, platelet rich plasma (PRP) injections, percutaneous needle tenotomy, hyaluronic Injections, corticosteroid Injections, prolotherapy, ultrasound guided tendon barbotage for calcific tendonitis, epidural steroid injections, rehabilitation, exercise prescriptions, among other treatments. Sports medicine physicians are then able to refer to various surgeons when non surgical treatments are exhausted. Some examples of musculoskeletal problems that could be effectively treated by a sports medicine physician include acute injuries such as sprains, strains, fractures and concussions; furthermore, neck, shoulder, elbow, wrist, hand, back, hip, knee, ankle, and foot injuries are treated by sports medicine physicians. Sports medicine physicians can also effectively treat more chronic and overuse related injuries, such as stress fractures, osteoarthritis, and tendon problems.
Who should see a sports medicine physician?
Sports medicine is not limited to professional athletes. Sports medicine physicians are ideal physicians for athletes of all levels, as well as non-athletes who wish to become more active. Sports medicine physicians are able to use their professional treatments on any level of athlete, including non-athletes, to quickly return to all of their physical activity and hobbies.
Do sports medicine physicians only treat medical conditions related to bones, muscles and tendons?
Sports medicine physicians are also additionally trained in sports medicine areas that aren’t musculoskeletal, including concussions, other head injuries, asthma, diabetes, nutrition, supplements, exercise prescriptions, return to play decisions, strength training and conditioning exercises, and healthy lifestyle promotion.
Where do sports medicine physicians work?
Sports medicine physicians work mostly in outpatient medical clinics. Sports medicine physicians also work as team doctors for local, regional, and national teams. These duties require additional qualifications and come with responsibilities such as pre-participation physical exams, injury assessment and management, care of sports related and general medical problems of athletes, sports psychology related issues, substance abuse issues, educating athletes about illness and injury prevention, and coordination of care to streamline treatment of athletes. This can include communication with athletic trainers, physical therapists, primary care physicians, other medical and surgical physicians, coaches, school administration, and families.
Should I go to a sports medicine doctor?
Dr. Kevin Mangum is a board certified fellowship trained primary care sports medicine physician who loves to treat any individual who has an injury or wants to be more active, whether professional or amateur. Dr. Kevin Mangum treats non-operative orthopedic conditions. Dr. Kevin Mangum practices in Salt Lake City Utah. There is no referral necessary. Call today for an appointment.
American Medical Society for Sports Medicine