Sports Medicine Research: In the Lab & In the Field (Sports Med Res)
Wednesday, August 16, 2017

Pain? Just Apply a Little Pressure

Does Acupressure Hit the Mark? A Three-Arm Randomized Placebo-Controlled Trial of Acupressure for Pain and Anxiety Relief in Athletes With Acute Musculoskeletal Sports Injuries

Macznik AK, Schneiders AG, Athens J, & Sullivan SJ. Clin J Sport Med. 2017;27(4):338-343.  

Take Home Message: Acupressure for 3 minutes reduced acute musculoskeletal pain, but not anxiety, after an acute injury. 

Acupressure is a treatment that was founded from traditional Chinese medicine principles and combines pressure points and acupuncture theories without the use of needles.  Clinically there has been a reemergence of alternative medicine techniques for reducing pain and anxiety associated with minor bruises, headaches, cancer, and other chronic conditions.  Acupressure may also be effective at decreasing symptoms of musculoskeletal injury; but it is unknown if it can help reduce symptoms after an acute injury. These authors conducted a randomized trial to investigate the effectiveness of acupressure compared with a sham acupressure treatment or no treatment among people who had an acute musculoskeletal injury on the same day they were treated.
Wednesday, August 9, 2017

Maybe It’s Time to Shake Up Your ACL Rehab Protocol

Efficacy of whole-body vibration board training on strength in athletes after anterior cruciate ligament reconstruction: A randomized controlled study.

Cosimo C, Bertuletti S, and Romiti D. Clin J Sports Med. 2017. [Epub Ahead of Print].

Take Home Message: After an anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) reconstruction, whole-body vibration coupled with a rehabilitation protocol increases knee extensor and flexor strength.

An ACL injury requires intensive rehabilitation. However, best rehabilitation practices are still debated. Recently, whole-body vibration (WBV) has shown some promise with increasing neuromuscular efficiency but it has not been investigated as part of an ACL rehabilitation protocol. Therefore, Cosimo and colleagues completed a randomized controlled trial to assess the efficacy of WBV after an ACL reconstruction among 38 female volleyball and basketball players (20 to 30 years old, active in sport for at least 6 years, only 1 ACL reconstruction treated arthroscopically).
Wednesday, August 2, 2017

Gridiron Graduation More Painful Based on Injury History

Osteoarthritis Prevalence in Retired National Football League Players With a History of Concussion and Lower Extremity Injury

Lynall RC, Pietrosimone B, Kerr ZY, Mauntel TC, Mihalik JC, & Guskiewicz KM. J Athlet Train. 2017; 52(6):518-525.  

Take Home Message: Retired professional football players with a history of multiple concussions and lower extremity injury are more likely to have osteoarthritis compared with players without such history.  Concussion history (without lower extremity injury) is also related to osteoarthritis.

An athlete after a concussion is at high risk for a lower extremity injury, which could then lead to an early-onset of osteoarthritis (OA). No one has investigated whether there is a relationship between concussion and OA.  Hence, the authors of this study investigated health surveys completed by 2,696 retired players from the National Football League (NFL) to examine the associations between physician/diagnosed OA, self-reported concussion history, and self-reported lower extremity injury history.
Monday, July 31, 2017

Concussions May Be Cramping Young Women’s Menstrual Patterns

Association of Concussion With Abnormal Menstrual Patterns in Adolescent and Young Women

Snook ML, Henry LC, Sanfilippo JS, Zeleznik AJ, Kontos AP. JAMA Pediatrics. 2017; ahead of print.

Take Home Message: Young women may have an increased risk of multiple abnormal menstrual patterns after a concussion.

Girls experience higher rates of sport-related concussion and tend to have worse concussion outcomes compared with male counterparts in similar sports. Concussions may also disrupt the neuroendocrine-pituitary-ovarian axis, which manages the menstrual cycle, and lead to menstrual dysregulation such as irregular bleeding habits. Early identification of menstrual irregularities is vital due to the irreparable damage it can have on an athlete’s body (decreased bone density). However, researchers and clinicians have yet to appreciate the role of concussion on menstrual patterns. Therefore, the authors tested whether menstrual patterns differed between 68 women who suffered a concussion (~16 years of age) and 61 women with an orthopedic injury (~17 years of age) for 120 days’ post injury.
Wednesday, July 26, 2017

Near-Infrared Spectroscopy may be a Future Concussion Biomarker

Assessing prefrontal cortex oxygenation after sport concussion with near-infrared spectroscopy

Bishop SA, Neary JP. Clin Physiol Funct Imaging. 2017 Jun 18. doi: 10.1111/cpf.12447.
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/28626873

Take Home Message: Near-infrared spectroscopy, which can measure blood-oxygen levels, may provide an objective method to assess concussion within days of initial trauma but it is not ready for clinical roll out just yet.

Neurocognitive tests provide a marker of concussion recovery, but may not detect changes in the underlying physiology. An objective measure of physiological changes associated with concussion may assist clinicians in determining if individuals have fully recovered before returning to sport. The authors of this study assessed if near infrared spectroscopy (NIRS), a noninvasive and portable method to measure blood-oxygen levels at the brain’s surface, may be a biomarker of concussion.
Monday, July 24, 2017

It May be Time to Update Your Neer Test

The diagnostic value of a modified Neer test in identifying subacromial impingement syndrome.

Goushen Y, Chongxi R, Guoqing C, Junling X, and Hailong J. Eur J Orthop Surg Traumatol. 2017. [Epub Ahead of Print].

Take Home Message: A modified Neer test may be beneficial at differentiating between subacromial impingement syndrome and frozen shoulder.

Subacromial impingement syndrome is a common shoulder injury in both athletes and non-athletes. While the Neer test is the most common special test for diagnosing subacromial impingement syndrome, it is also positive in patients with frozen shoulder. Therefore, Goushen and colleagues completed a single-center, prospective study to evaluate the diagnostic accuracy of a modified Neer test in diagnosing subacromial impingement syndrome and ruling out frozen shoulder.
Wednesday, July 19, 2017

Athletes’ Ankle Sprain Fears

Collegiate Athletes with Ankle Sprain History Exhibit Greater Fear-Avoidance Beliefs

Houston MN, Hoch JM, & Hoch MC. J Sport Rehabil. 2017; Epub ahead of print Jun 12 : 1-16.  

Take Home Message: An athlete with a history of ankle sprain typically has higher fear avoidance beliefs than an athlete without a history of ankle sprain.  This is worse for an athlete with a history of multiple sprains.

After an ankle sprain – one of the most common injuries in athletic participation – there are sometimes complications including chronic instability and fear of reinjury, which may result in avoidance and possibly functional detriments.  There has been some research with conflicting findings on fear avoidance and kinesiophobia after ankle sprain.  Therefore, the authors investigated if athletes with a history of single or recurrent ankle sprains had greater fear avoidance beliefs than athletes without a history of an ankle sprain.