Whether you are a weekend warrior who hikes or cycles on your days away from the office or a full-time athlete who is striving to make it to the professional leagues, sports injuries can stop you in your tracks. A strained muscle group or sprained joint can hobble your activity and keep you on the sidelines. While most sports injuries can be alleviated with a few days of rest, some are more serious and need medical treatment. Here are some of the common sports injuries and when you should seek medical attention.

Ankle Twists and Turns

Stepping wrong on your foot and twisting your ankle can cause a nasty sprain or strain. Ankle injuries can also cause tears in ligaments or fractures to the small bones. Knowing when to put up your leg at home with an ice pack and when to head to the doctor can improve your recovery. For ankle injuries, the following symptoms can indicate a more serious sprain or fracture:

  • Bruising or changes in color
  • Limited movement
  • Extreme pain
  • Not able to put any weight on your foot/ankle
  • Breaks in the skin
  • Extreme tenderness to the touch
  • Numbness

A severe ankle sprain or fracture may need medical treatment. For any level of athlete, getting the right medical care can greatly improve the speed of recovery.

Knee Sports Injuries

The knee joint is susceptible to injury in all kinds of sports, from runner’s knee to a wide variety of ligament tears. While it is common to twist the knee wrong and hobble home after a run, more severe knee injuries can completely stop you in your tracks. An ACL tear is intensely painful, making it difficult to stand or walk on the leg. A dislocation is also painful, but will also cause a deformity if bones are still out of place. If you are unable to put weight on your knee or there is extreme swelling or any deformity, seek medical attention.

Shoulder Injuries

The most common shoulder sports injuries are from repetitive use. The symptoms become worse over time from shoulder impingement or tendonitis. The more severe sports injuries that need immediate medical care include dislocations of the shoulder joint, AC joint separation and rotator cuff tears. These injuries can cause intense pain, limit range of motion and may cause deformity of the shoulder. Seek medical care if you have any severe shoulder injury symptoms.

If you experience a severe sports injury in NYC, Westchester or White Plains, contact us at Shoulders & Knees. Dr. Steven Struhl is one of the top orthopedic and sports medicine surgeons in New York, offering advanced treatment options for sports injuries.