Orthopedic sports medicine is a specialty that combines both orthopedic medicine and sports medicine. Its aim is to treat injuries for and improve the performance of athletes at all levels, from children to adults, and from little league players to adult weekend athletes to professional athletes.
The word orthopedic comes from the Greek ortho, meaning straight and pais, meaning child, but today’s orthopediasts treat people of all ages.
Orthopedic doctors have a long history of helping correct injury and defects, and the sports medicine orthopedist has an even more focused subspecialty of that ancient set of skills. Today, they observe athletes to help preserve good health, improve performance where possible, and restore strength and mobility following an injury. Most sports injuries that will be treated by an orthopedist involve the muscles, ligaments tendons and joints, which comprises the entire skeleton and all its connective tissues.
Sports orthopedists are concerned with the entire musculoskeletal system and it’s performance, and their goals can be accomplished through conditioning traditional medicine, surgery and rehabilitation.
Sports orthopedists may offer clients a variety of services, including training and conditioning guidance, advice about nutrition and dietary supplements, and coordination of treatment with other health care professionals including dieticians, surgeons, physical therapists and other health care professionals.
To achieve professional certification in orthopedic sports medicine, an individual must complete four years of medical school and then another five years in orthopedic residency, plus one to four years in a sports-related fellowship program. After their education is complete, those who hope to practice orthopedic sports medicine must achieve certification from the American Board of Orthopaedic Surgery (ABOS). Even after certification is achieved, orthopedic sports doctors must participate in continuing education in order to maintain licensure.
Because of their in-depth training, doctors in this specialty have a specific set of knowledge that can benefit athletes and sports enthusiasts