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Specialist treatment for sports-related injuries, delivered by experts
Sports injuries can affect any part of the body, but are most common in the lower limbs, particularly the knees and ankles. The sooner you receive treatment for an injury, the better.
At Circle Health Group, we have a network of experienced consultants who specialise in the treatment of sporting injuries, offering everything from physiotherapy and rehabilitation to advanced surgery. We will treat your injury, support you through your recovery and, where possible, we'll help you to avoid similar injuries in future.
Call or book online today to arrange a consultation to discuss private sports injury treatment with a consultant of your choice at Circle Health Group.
Anyone can sustain an injury during sports or exercise. Children are at particularly high risk due to their increased activity level and limited awareness of their physical limits.
Other factors that may increase your risk of getting a sports injury include:
Sports injuries can be acute or chronic. An acute injury develops suddenly due to a single event while chronic injuries develop slowly over time.
Symptoms of an acute sports injury may include:
Symptoms of a chronic sports injury may include:
A sprain occurs when there is stretching or tearing of a ligament (the connective tissue that attaches bones to joints). Sprains may involve stretching of the ligament, or a partial or full ligament tear.
Strains result from stretching or tearing muscles or tendons (the connective tissue that attaches muscles to bones).
Bruises occur when blood vessels under the surface of the skin break causing bleeding under the skin. They appear as discolouration on the skin and may be black, red, purple, or blue, often changing to brown or yellow as they heal.
After an injury, your body sends increased blood and white blood cells to the area to begin the healing process. This is part of your body's natural inflammatory response. Swelling is often accompanied by pain, redness, and heat around the injured area.
A fracture is another word for a broken bone. A fracture may be simple or complex depending on the way the bone has broken, whether it has moved out of position and whether the broken bone has pierced the skin.
A dislocated bone occurs when one of the bones that makes up a joint moves out of position.
The ACL is a tough band of tissue in your knee joint that joins your thigh bone to your shin bone. It runs diagonally through the inside of your knee, helping to control the back-and-forth movement of your lower leg and to stabilise your knee joint.
ACL injuries are one of the most common types of knee injuries. They usually occur when playing sport, such as football, rugby, tennis, and squash. They happen if your lower leg extends forward too much, or if your knee and lower leg are twisted.
The Achilles tendon is a tendon that runs along the back of your heel. This tendon can break or rupture during sports causing sudden, severe pain and difficulty walking. This type of injury often requires surgery called an Achilles tendon repair.
The rotator cuff is a group of muscles and tendons that keep your shoulder in its socket and allows you to move and rotate your arm. Rotator cuff injuries occur when these muscles or tendons are torn. Severe rotator cuff injuries may require surgery.
Tendonitis is inflammation of the tendons caused by injury, overuse or wear and tear. Common types of tendonitis include lateral epicondylitis (tennis elbow), medial epicondylitis (golfers elbow), de Quervain's tenosynovitis and stenosing tenosynovitis (trigger finger).
Home treatments for sports injuries start with the RICE protocol. RICE stands for:
In addition to RICE therapy, over-the-counter painkillers such as paracetamol and non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) like ibuprofen can help to reduce pain and inflammation.
If home treatment isn't effective, physiotherapy is normally the next step in treating sports injuries.
At Circle Health Group our team of physiotherapists are experts in treating a range of sports-related injuries. They will begin by performing a physical assessment to check your range of motion, muscle strength, coordination, and function. Your physiotherapist will then create an individualised treatment plan consisting of a range of hands-on techniques including specific exercises and sports massage.
If your pain is severe, your consultant may recommend an injection of corticosteroid into the affected joint. Corticosteroid injections are effective in relieving pain in the short term and may be used in combination with physiotherapy to make exercising easier.
In cases of severe injury, or when nonsurgical treatments haven't worked, surgery may be necessary. Surgery may be needed to treat fractures, or repair damage to ligaments, tendons, or cartilage.
At your first appointment, your consultant will ask you about your symptoms and how your injury occurred. They will perform a physical examination and order scans such as an X-ray, CT, MRI or ultrasound to check for damage to your bones or soft tissue. Your consultant will make a diagnosis based on your symptoms, physical examination, and scans.
This appointment is also where we get to know you, discuss your expectations for treatment and encourage you to ask any questions you may have.
At the end of your appointment, your consultant will discuss possible treatment options based on your diagnosis.
Not all sports injuries can be avoided, but there are some things you can do to reduce the risk including:
Between 1 and 1.5 million people attend A&E departments with injuries related to sports and exercise each year in the UK.
Which sport has the most injuries varies according to the data, but one observational study found that football injuries were the most common accounting for 65% of all sports-related injuries over a three-month period. This appears to be due to the fact that football is a contact sport as well as its huge popularity in the UK.
Injury prevention is important not only to help you reach your training goals but to prevent minor or repeated injuries from causing long-term damage. Long-term or repeat injuries can be harder to treat and may lead to chronic pain or mobility problems.
If you would like to see a consultant or learn more about treatment for sports injuries, book your appointment online today or call a member of our team directly on 0141 300 5009.
Content reviewed by Circle in-house team in March 2023. Next review due March 2026.