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Sports Applications Technology

Tech Advancements In The Sports Medicine Industry

February 20, 2019


Sports medicine is a specialized type of medicines, which are typically prepared for problems arising from the wear and tear of muscles, tearing of ligaments, breaking of bones or being hit by something or someone while playing on the field. It has evolved quite a bit over the course of time. The most important techniques used today have taken sports medicine to a different level altogether. For instance, knee braces and supports are today more common than you would think.

Top Tech Advancements

This isn’t the only change made. Here is a look at everything happening in the sports medicine industry that you need to know about.

Arthroscopic Surgery

Earlier procedures used open surgical techniques. Now arthroscopic surgery is used in sports medicine, which has revolutionized the treatment of injuries and returns the injured player back to the playing field in a shorter time period. Suture anchor, which is a simple way of attaching soft tissue to bone, is now used, replacing more invasive techniques like the use of bone tunnels and additional fixation, which required a longer operation time. Meniscus transplantation allows surgeons to treat only the damaged part of the knee without performing a full knee replacement.

Biologic Solutions

Sports medicine physicians have introduced platelet-rich plasma (PRP) injections, and it has worked better when it comes to major body repairs. Using a musculoskeletal ultrasound for injection advice, there have been excellent results with PRP. The injections have helped patients with partial tears from throwing injuries. Athletes can return back to sports faster now than they would have otherwise.

ACL Reconstruction

Although the single-bundle anterior cruciate ligament repair process has been very successful, the post-surgery attrition rate is also very high. So a double-bundle technique has arrived, which strengthens the rotational and front-back stability. Athletes who undergo double-bundle ACL reconstruction can perform cutting and pivoting motions with a reduced chance of re-injury.

New Computer Technology

Over the past few years, there has been a great advancement in computer technology, which is applied to medicine as it relates to the biomechanics of the player. For instance, computers can now predict how and what injuries may happen, and can treat it through different methods like multiplane ultrasound and fluoroscopy.

Improved Surgical Technique

One of the recent developments in the field of surgery is the application of safer methods to remove injured tissue through minimal invasive technology. Ultrasound waves are also used in this regard. The removal of the injured tissue and biologic regeneration have become possible due to advances in surgical techniques with minimally invasive instruments that can support such procedures.

Hip Surgery

Hip impingement is a common phenomenon with top athletes. How much one will suffer will depend on factors like the degree the acetabulum was rotated. Other factors such as whether it is tilted, or how much the socket has been affected, has to be looked at also. The amount of rotation of the bone on the femoral head injunction with the femur is another thing that cannot be forgotten. Today, hip surgeries aren’t as intrusive as they were. In fact, they are among the minimally invasive orthopedic procedures available today, which makes them a great bet for athletes.

Better Pain Injections

Ultrasound technology has been around for decades, but its use in musculoskeletal pain management purposes is just beginning to unfold. Once it is adapted for joint injections, physicians will be able to administer the injection in the exact spot needed.

Robotic Technology

Advanced computer-aided robotic technology is available now for partial knee and hip replacement procedures. Computer software takes a three-dimensional CT scan of the patient's anatomy and allows the surgeons to plan their procedures. The plans are then fed to the robot through the software, which guides the surgeons in their operation.

Spine Surgery

Athletes stress their spinal cords quite a bit, which potentially leads to fractures and other painful conditions. Modern technology has made it possible to perform minimally invasive surgery and return athletes to play within a year. When athletes incur an injury to their spinal cord, they are able to go through diagnosis and treatment much faster than they used to in the past, which increases their chances of recovery.

Concussion Management

There has been a spurt in concussion awareness among athletes because of the link found between concussions and neurological issues. People were not concerned about concussions earlier, and the extent of damage was judged on the basis of symptoms. Players were allowed to play if they were feeling well enough. Now, apart from neurocognitive testing, team physicians monitor balance and memory tests to ensure that the athlete has fully recovered.