The End Of Pain?

Sports medicine ex­perts are de­vel­op­ing bold, surgery-free TECH­NIQUES to tackle run­ning in­juries. Here’s a guide to five CUTTING- EDGE THERAPIES

Runner's World (UK) - - In This Issue -

When it comes to treat­ing se­ri­ous run­ning in­juries, sci­ence is lead­ing the way

Shas come a long way PORTS MEDICINE since the 1960s, when Run­ner’s World was first pub­lished over in the US. Back then, run­ners with a mus­cu­lar or joint in­jury were given a lit­tle RICE (rest, ice, com­pres­sion, el­e­va­tion) – and that’s about it. X-rays de­tected frac­tures, which usu­ally landed a run­ner in a hard cast and im­mo­bile for weeks. To­day there are many more di­ag­nos­tic and treat­ment op­tions avail­able. From bone scans to MRIS, from biome­chan­i­cal video anal­y­sis to gait re­train­ing, and from mus­cle stim­u­la­tion to Ki­ne­sio tape, sports medicine prac­ti­tion­ers have more tools than ever at their dis­posal to heal run­ners and keep them healthy.

And that’s just the be­gin­ning. Re­searchers con­tinue striv­ing to de­velop ad­vanced therapies that are more ef­fec­tive and that give a non-sur­gi­cal op­tion to ath­letes with per­sis­tent in­juries.

‘The field is re­ally at a fas­ci­nat­ing junc­ture,’ says sports medicine spe­cial­ist Dr Joseph Mcgin­ley. ‘ We are start­ing to treat con­di­tions that once re­quired surgery and sig­nif­i­cant down­time with min­i­mally in­va­sive therapies.’

While the de­vel­op­ment of cut­tingedge treat­ments is ex­cit­ing, the research on some of them is rel­a­tively new and the re­sults thus far are mixed, says chi­ro­prac­tic sports physi­cian Dr John Ball. ‘This doesn’t mean some of these treat­ments can’t be ef­fec­tive, but they should be used as a last re­sort, for in­juries that haven’t re­sponded to tra­di­tional therapies,’ he says.

Of course, it’s ev­ery run­ner’s dream to stay pain-free so there’s never need for any ad­vanced in­ter­ven­tions. But in case you aren’t so lucky, there’s value in know­ing what might be avail­able to you down the road – to en­sure you get back on the road.

Stem cells har­vested from your own bone mar­row may help grow new car­ti­lage in your dam­aged joints.

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