Common Baseball Injuries and Non-Surgical Treatment Options
People of all ages and skill levels can play baseball, from the youngest little leagues to high school, college, and beyond. While developing baseball skills has its advantages, including hand-eye coordination and running speed, the sport is not without risk. Preventing common baseball injuries is important in maintaining one's health. If common activity-related issues occur when playing baseball, shoulder injuries or other baseball arm injuries it's important to seek effective treatment immediately. Kinetic Sports Medicine offers comprehensive non-surgical treatment options that are often less invasive than conventional treatments.
Common Baseball Injuries
Pitchers often suffer a variety of issues from regularly playing baseball, shoulder injuries as well as elbow and wrist injuries are quite common. The rotator cuff muscles in the shoulder may suffer strain and even tears with the repetitive motion of throwing pitches. Impingement syndrome in the shoulder involves impingement of rotator cuff tendons, and this injury usually happens gradually with overuse. Baseball elbow injuries, such as problems with the ulnar collateral ligament are common with overuse. Also from overuse related to baseball, wrist injuries are common and players may experience tendonitis or tenosynovitis, which is swelling of the tendons on the inside of the wrist.
Baseball players are also at risk for knee injuries, including issues with the anterior cruciate ligament or the medial collateral ligament, which are the ligaments that work to stabilize the knee. These knee injuries can occur while running bases or running after balls due to sudden stops. Muscle strains and sprains are possible in baseball, just as with virtually every other sport. Players can injure their legs, arms, and back. A back injury that tends to occur with baseball players is called "spondylolysis." This lower back injury happens with batting and pitching, and it involves a stress fracture to a lower vertebrae.
For those that play baseball, head injuries are another serious risk. Baseball is a non-contact sport; however, concussions can happen when players accidentally collide with each other or run into fences or walls. Players could also be hit in the head by a bat or ball during play. After a head injury, a player needs to stop play immediately and have a full examination by a physician.
Traditional Medical Treatment
After an injury, standard treatment involves stopping play and resting to allow healing. Applying ice to the injury site can also help reduce pain, muscle spasms, and swelling. Compression and elevation are also recommended to help reduce swelling and drain away excess fluids from the injury site. Seeing a physician is recommended in cases involving severe pain, swelling, and the inability to manage typical activities. A physician will diagnose the injury using tools such as X-ray, MRI, and CT scans. After diagnosis, the treatment plan may include rest, anti-inflammatory medications, immobilization of the joint, and physical therapy. In severe cases, extensive surgery may be recommended to repair damage.
Newer Treatment Options
The use of stem cell therapies and platelet-rich plasma injections offer a promising solution for many suffering from baseball injuries. The procedure involves drawing stem cells or blood from a patient. After a blood draw, the sample is processed then injected at an injury site, such as the shoulder, elbow, or knee. The joint often responds favorably to these healing growth factors, which stimulate natural regrowth and healing.
At Kinetic Sports Medicine, Dr. Richard Kim and his staff have focused their practice on offering non-operative solutions to resolve chronic pain and activity-related injuries. Using newer and advanced medical technologies, such as stem cell therapy and platelet-rich injections, patients can regain their healthy, active lifestyles without the recovery time and process of traditionally more invasive surgeries. Contact us to schedule an appointment with Dr. Kim. Once you learn more about our services, your sports injuries can be a thing of the past.