8 Common Misconceptions About Sports Injuries

One of the keys to a healthier and more active life is sports, but sports for health can worsen health when done without awareness. Orthopedics and Traumatology specialist Prof. Dr. Hasan Bombacı, who emphasized the importance of doing sports with awareness and protecting from injuries as much as possible in order to maximize performance while doing sports, explained the mistakes that are thought to be true about sports injuries...

Sport is an activity that is practiced at every stage of life, from childhood, when it is done freely for fun, to professional competitions. However, sports also bring with them the risk of injury. Yeditepe University Hospitals Orthopedics and Traumatology specialist Prof. Dr. Hasan Bombacı said, "However, being aware of the risks while doing sports and making the right intervention when an injury occurs will minimize the problems to be encountered in the following periods." 

"Running Damages the Knees."

Most sports injuries are preventable injuries. Stating that shoes are often the first thing to be blamed for sports injuries in runners, Prof. Dr. Hasan Bombacı said, "Shoes are really important. However, as in many other sports branches, some disorders that occur in runners depend on multiple factors. Factors such as running ground, nutrition, dehydration, concentration, and preparation of the body for sports (warm-up-stretching-activity-cool down-stretching again) can all affect the benefit or damage we will get from sports. However, it is possible to prevent most of the potential harms of running, which is a natural activity of most living things."

 "When an Athlete Suffers an Anterior Cruciate Ligament (ACL) Injury, Their Career Is Over."

Stating that this information was correct in the past, Yeditepe University Koşuyolu Hospital Orthopedics and Traumatology specialist Prof. Dr. Hasan Bombacı clarified the issue as follows: "Anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) is one of the serious injuries of the knee region. Today, ACL surgeries give much more successful results thanks to developing technology and techniques. However, it is not very likely to reduce the period of return to sports after surgery below a certain time as there is a biological process related to the healing of the ligament. Nevertheless, with a good rehabilitation process, it is possible to achieve approximately 70-80% return to sports and 50% preoperative performance in patients who have undergone ACL reconstruction." 

"The More Exercise You Do To Get Stronger, The Better The Results."

Explaining that it would not be correct to set such sharp limits for this information, Prof. Dr. Hasan Bombacı stated that there will be 2 types of muscle strengthening exercises and gave the following information: "The execution and results of these exercises are different. The first one is the exercises that increase the strength and volume of the muscle. In this exercise technique, the exercise is performed against increasing resistance. Meanwhile, the capacity of the muscle to produce energy with the aerobic mechanism gradually decreases and the anaerobic mechanism is activated. Muscle fatigue occurs and some substances released into the environment cause pain. In the meantime, adaptation mechanisms that come into play in exercises such as heavy lifting, for example, cause both volume and strength increases in the muscle. In the second pathway, the endurance of the muscle increases. Here, the motor units that produce power within the muscle do not increase, but rather the activation of muscles moving in the same direction increases. In this case, the endurance of the muscle, whose volume does not increase much, increases. In strengthening exercises, the technique has an important place in addition to quantity." 

"Applying Heat is the Best Way to Relieve Pain in an Acute Injury."

Tissue damage that occurs in a sudden injury sometimes causes bleeding but almost always local edema depending on the severity of the injury. Stating that in cases where bleeding occurs, the vessels will react by shrinking ("vasoconstriction") to limit bleeding in the damaged area, Prof. Dr. Bombacı said, "Subsequently, other mechanisms to stop bleeding come into play. In the following hours, in response to the lack of oxygen in that area, dilation of the vessels and an increase in vascular permeability occur, which means an increase in edema." "If heat is applied at the beginning of the injury, bleeding and edema increase in the damaged area due to the expansion of the vessels. This is also an undesirable situation. Instead, cold should be applied to the damaged area with appropriate pressure." 

"Exercise Must Be Painful to Benefit!"

Underlining that this information is not always correct, Prof. Dr. Hasan Bombacı informed that the most important reason for the pain felt during exercise is the irritation caused by lactic acid that occurs during muscle contraction. Prof. Dr. Bombacı said that this is especially evident in exercises against high resistance, such as lifting weights, and added: "The reason for this is that when the capacity of the muscle is used the most, the mechanism of energy production in the muscle switches from the 'aerobic way' to the 'anaerobic way'. Forcing to these limits is necessary to increase both the volume and the number of muscle cells. This occurs, but to a lesser degree, in endurance exercises where the muscles work below maximum strength. In stretching exercises, another type of exercise, the pain caused by the exercise is felt at the beginning of the exercise, but it is shorter. 

"A Dislocated Finger Takes Longer to Heal Than a Broken One."

Pointing out that the treatment approach for finger dislocations will differ according to the hand or foot, Prof. Dr. Hasan Bombacı said, "If we talk about the more common hand fractures and dislocations, it would not be wrong to say that very different results may occur depending on the complex structure of the hand and the variety of damage that will occur." He emphasized that both fractures and dislocations can be treated with non-surgical treatments called conservative treatment, as well as various surgical procedures depending on the location and shape of the fracture and dislocation. Prof. Dr. Bombacı added that the healing process can vary greatly in both injuries depending on the location and shape of the fracture and dislocation.

"Ankle Sprain is Worse than Ankle Fracture"

An ankle sprain is a very common injury in daily life. Stating that ligament injuries that occur in the ankle joint comes to mind when ankle sprain is mentioned, Prof. Dr. Hasan Bombacı also stated the following: "Although it is not very common, small fractures may also accompany it. Unless there is a fracture, the treatment of ankle sprain (ligament injury) for the first time is a fixation with specially designed orthoses for varying periods depending on the degree of ligament damage. Ankle fractures are basically caused by the ankle being under an abnormal load. However, in this case, fractures occur in one or more bones that form the ankle. Most of the time, surgery is required for treatment. Sometimes these fractures may be accompanied by cartilage damage. Therefore, the consequences are more unpredictable and pose risks." 

"Weight Lifting Exercises in Pre-Puberty and Adolescents Injure Growth Plates and Retard Growth."

Underlining that this information is not always correct, Yeditepe University Koşuyolu Hospital Orthopedics and Traumatology specialist Prof. Dr. Hasan Bombacı reminded that muscle volume and oxygen burning capacity of muscles are less in pre-adolescent children compared to adults and said, "This causes the muscles to produce less power. Therefore, children get tired more quickly. Early fatigue of the muscles indirectly means that the joints and the growth plates at the ends of the long bones are overloaded. This can lead to injury to the growth cartilage. However, recent studies show that the risks to the growth plates can be minimized with well-organized and timed (8-12 weeks) exercise programs in children. In strengthening exercises performed by children, exercises performed with more repetitions against lower resistance are more appropriate."


23 February 2023

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