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Published on June 20, 2022

What Is Sports Medicine? Dispelling Common Myths, Plus How to Prevent Common Injuries

What Is Sports Medicine? | 2 Your Well-Being

Myth: Sports medicine is only for athletes.

Fact: Sports medicine providers treat a variety of common injuries that anyone could experience -- not just athletes!

In this 2 Your Well-Being discussion with WFMY News 2, patient Karey Loftis, who experienced a shoulder injury, shares her sports medicine care story and Jason Matthews, MD, dispels common myths about sports medicine.

How Sports Medicine Helps You Overcome Common Injuries and Gets You Back to Your Favorite Activities

After injuring her shoulder moving a 87-pound boxed mattress, Karey Loftis was referred to a sports medicine provider at Cone Health MedCenter Mebane. At first, that seemed a little odd.

“With sports medicine, I think about high school, honestly,” says Loftis. “Like the personal trainers in high school, taping up ankles for the football team, things like that.”

It’s a common misconception that sports medicine providers only treat athletes, according to Jason Matthews, MD. “I have a lot of patients who qualify for sports medicine, but they’re not necessarily athletes. Sometimes it gets linked to being young, but this is something that we treat for all ages.”

Injuries from exercise or common chores can be just as serious as a sports injury, and sports medicine providers have the knowledge and tools to treat both. In Loftis’ case, providers used ultrasound to locate the source of her pain and coritisone shots to help you recover from her shoulder injury.

“I want to get back to where I can physically play with my daughter without an hour going by, and I'm like, ‘OK, look, mommy's got to go ice her shoulder,’” says Loftis. Today, Loftis is on the road to recovery as she complete 4-6 weeks of physical therapy, which will help her get back to doing something she loves: playing with her daughter.

What Is Sports Medicine? Q&A with Jason Matthews, MD

Some people say sports medicine is only for athletes. Why is that not true?

“Sports medicine, first off, is like you said: it's not just for athletes. Whether you're young or you're old, any activity level, whether that's sedentary or active, if you get carpal tunnel, if you have some arthritis type issues, and of course those higher level activities with more performance athletes – we're trained especially and specialized to take care of anybody who comes into the door.”

Should you only see a sports medicine provider if you have an injury? Or can sports medicine providers help with preventative care too?

“We will of course see you gladly during an injury, and we'll treat you. A lot of that treatment, even for injuries is about possibly preventing future injuries. But if you've got the foresight or get a referral from your primary care doctor, we'd love to see you before injuries or before even starting activities, because we can really stack the deck in your favor. So we try to assess how your body's moving, what kind of risk factors we have, and we come together with a good game plan that we can keep you injury free, happy and meeting all of your goals that you want from an athletic standpoint or activity standpoint.”

Learn more by watching the full interview video above.

2 Your Well-Being

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