Acute and Chronic Sports Injuries

Posted October 4th, 2017

Regardless of the specific structure affected, musculoskeletal injuries can
generally be classified in one of two ways: acute or chronic. An acute injury
is sudden and severe such as a broken bone. A chronic injury develops and
worsens over an extended period of time like shin splints. Acute injuries
may lead to a chronic syndrome if untreated.

There are similarities and differences between acute and chronic injuries.
Acute and chronic are similar in that coping with any health problem,
depending on the severity of the condition and the resources available, can
be challenging. Direct Orthopedic Care, DOC, provides immediate access to
the highest quality orthopedic healthcare without the challenge and
expense of an ER visit or the wait for a referral to an orthopedic specialist.

An acute injury occurs suddenly during activity. Traumatic impact can cause
sprains, fractures, strains, and torn muscles or ligaments. Acute injuries are
usually isolated to the injured body area and respond favorably to
treatment. Symptoms of acute injury include swelling, tenderness,
weakness, limited movement, no weight tolerance, or visible dislocation.

In contrast, long-term chronic injuries often result from overusing one area
of the body while playing the same sport over a long period of time.
Common symptoms of chronic injuries include pain during sporting
activities, swelling and a constant ache while at rest.

Acute injuries can become chronic medical conditions. For example, a
severe back injury can develop into chronic back pain.

Whether an injury is acute or chronic, it must be treated immediately. The
first step is to stop the activity. The DOC orthopedic specialists diagnose
and treat musculoskeletal injuries, acute or chronic, seven days a week,
including evenings.


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