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Understanding the Specialty of Sports Medicine

Whether you’re 19 or 90, you can injure your musculoskeletal system: muscles, ligaments, tendons, bones. Sports medicine physicians help you regain function after a musculoskeletal injury or accident. If you play sports, making an appointment with a physician trained in sports medicine is a no-brainer for an injury. 

If you don’t play sports but have chronic pain or an acute injury from a fall or other accident that affects your musculoskeletal system, a sports medicine specialist can help relieve the pain. 

Unlike an orthopedic surgeon who specializes in surgical interventions for musculoskeletal injuries and conditions, a sports medicine physician focuses on nonsurgical treatments. Did you know that 90% of injuries from sports don’t require surgery

Daniel Loder, MD is a board-certified pain management and sports medicine specialist. He treats many patients with pain from musculoskeletal injuries, using minimally invasive approaches as well as orthobiologic treatment

What are musculoskeletal injuries or conditions that cause pain?

Just about any part of your body can be affected by a musculoskeletal injury because your soft tissue — muscles, ligaments, tendons, or bones — can be injured. Tennis players often suffer from rotator cuff problems or chronic cases of tendonitis, such as tennis elbow. Baseball players are often hit with shoulder, rotator cuff, wrist, and hand injuries. All sports players can suffer knee or hip injuries. 

You can also suffer debilitating pain from joint injuries or damage to your spinal cord from an accident on the field. Spinal stenosis, herniated discs, and spondylolisthesis are some painful back conditions that may have resulted from a sports injury or other cause. A common joint problem is painful knee osteoarthritis, whether it’s from years of pounding on the basketball or tennis court or the aftermath of an injury such as trauma to your ACL. 

Perhaps you’ve tried other traditional methods to relieve your pain. You’ve taken pain relievers, but they don’t help much. Opioids are now limited because of the opioid epidemic. You may not be able to take other pain medication because of liver or kidney disease. You’ve tried physical therapy; it has only helped somewhat. You’re still in chronic pain. 

Dr. Loder, as a pain management and sports medicine specialist, uses regenerative medicine and interventional pain management strategies to help calm your pain and restore your ability to function. 

Regenerative medicine 

Dr. Loder uses orthobiologic injections to help calm your pain and promote healing. An orthobiologic is a biological material — a natural substance or one derived from nature —  that is also produced by your own body, for example, blood platelets and stem cells. The use of orthobiologics has spurred the development of the field of regenerative medicine and has helped to revolutionize treatment for pain in sports medicine, orthopedic specialties, and pain management specialties. 

Dr. Loder has found, like many physicians, that platelet-rich plasma (PRP) helps you heal faster from musculoskeletal injuries and helps calm pain from chronic musculoskeletal conditions better than with traditional therapies alone. PRP is a remixture of your own blood that contains a heavy concentration of blood platelets with rich nutrients. The nutrients rush to the site of your injury to relieve inflammation and calm pain. Studies show that it can help relieve tennis elbow, Achilles tendonitis, patellar (knee) tendonitis, and knee osteoarthritis. 

Interventional medicine

Interventional techniques use injections, lasers, and other minimally invasive approaches to relieve pain. These don’t pose the risks of surgery and possible surgical complications. 

Call Daniel Loder, MD, or book an appointment online today if you’re suffering musculoskeletal pain from an acute or chronic condition.

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