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Sports injuries while travelling, what a physician in Mexico can do

Posted by Dr. Santiago Hernandez, August 21, 2014

sportsSitting behind a desk for weeks on end and exerting ourselves in our favorite sport occasionally on the weekends or on our yearly vacation can take a serious toll in sports injuries.  Whether you are on vacation and suffer a sports injury or you are opting for medical travel, you can count on quality medical attention from experienced surgeons,  physiotherapists, and general physicians in Mexico. Most sports injuries have warning signs and symptoms that should prompt you to look for medical attention.

The most common injuries are sprains and strains. Sprains are injuries of ligaments that connect the bones to the joints.  When these are stretched past their limit they can tear or become deformed.  Strains are tears of the muscle fibers or tendons that connect the muscles and bones. Groin pull, which causes strain to the inner thigh muscle and hamstring strain caused by overstretching the muscles in the back of the thigh are among the most common sports injuries.

Although many of these injuries can be prevented with proper warm-ups and rest between intense sports activities, prevention of sports injuries is often beyond our control. These injuries can vary from mild to moderate to severe but they should never be taken lightly. Common sports injuries can take months to heal, even with good treatment and in some cases, if the sprain or strain has caused the entire muscle, tendon or ligament to tear away, surgery may be needed. Prompt attention by a qualified doctor can prevent further damage and speed up the healing process.

When should you look for professional assistance for our sports injury?  If the joint or bone looks crooked, or moves abnormally;  if you cannot bear weight or use the limb without it ‘giving way’; if there is excessive swelling and the skin changes colour beyond mild bruising, don’t delay. It is also advisable to see a physician if the pain persists even with rest and is not alleviated by over-the-counter pain relievers.

A high ankle sprain, one that causes tenderness above the ankle, heals slowly and should be checked by the doctor to make sure that the bones of the lower leg have not separated. Shin splints, pains down the front of the lower leg could be a sign of a stress fracture in your shin bone.  Tears in the anterior cruciate ligament which holds the leg bone to the knee are one of the most severe sports injuries and a complete tear can make the knee ‘pop’. Recovery from this injury usually requires surgery.

Whether overuse has caused repeated, microscopic injuries to the lower leg of a runner or the shock impact and constant extension of the muscles in the forearm cause ‘tennis elbow’ or rotator cuff tendinitis to a tennis player; or the sports injury is caused by sudden strain to an occasional sports lover, receiving professional medical attention is vital.  Travelers to Mexico have found reliable, competent physicians and physiotherapists who are experienced in diagnosing and treating of all sports injuries.

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