Dr. Colvin talks about common basketball injuries

Posted by on Jan 9, 2012 in Dr. Alexis C. Colvin, Health | No Comments

If you’ve ever played basketball – for a school team, in a rec league, on the playground – odds are you’ve gotten hurt at some point. It’s the nature of the sport – spend a lot of time with your arms outstretched, reaching and shooting and you’re liable to develop tendinitis in a shoulder. All the running and jumping is a sure recipe for tendinitis in a knee, and if you mis-step when cutting or come down with a rebound and land on someone’s foot you’re lucky not to sprain an ankle.

So what should you do when you land badly and an ankle starts to swell? Or you try to intercept a pass and jam a finger? I got some advice from Dr. Alexis Colvin, Assistant Professor of Orthopaedic Surgery at Mount Sinai School of Medicine in New York on common basketball injuries and how to deal with them.

Basketball involves a lot of motions with arms extended over the head – shooting jump shots, attempting to block said shots, reaching and positioning for rebounds, hanging on the rim after a dunk… actually, I have no experience with that last one. Over time, those activities can cause the tendons in the shoulder joint to become irritated and inflamed, which is the textbook definition of tendinitis.

Do I have tendinitis?

If you feel pain during over-head activities – reaching , even brushing your hair – there’s a good chance that you’ve got tendinitis. Most of the time, mild tendinitis will heal on its own… if you let it. “You don’t need to see a physician right away unless there are symptoms like numbness or tingling,” says Dr. Colvin. Avoid the activity that caused the problem in the first place, rest and useanti-inflammatory medication.

Numbness or tingling can be a sign of nerve damage – in that case, consult a doctor right away. The best way to prevent tendinitis in the shoulder – and anywhere else, really – is to strengthen the muscles of the joint. Dr. Colvin stresses overall health and conditioning as one of the best ways to prevent injury.

Is my shoulder dislocated?

A dislocation of the shoulder is a much more serious injury, typically resulting from a significant force or trauma. If you take that sort of hit, see a doctor right away.

Read the full article at About.com

Photo credit: arturodonate

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