Playing Sports and Injuries

So, I have always been an active person. I have played sports all my life since it is an extension of my personality. Now, with being active comes with it injuries both ill fortune and false bravado. I wanted to document some injuries that i have had over the past couple of years from playing soccer and basketball. Interesting enough all my injuries have come from playing soccer, my first love and the sport that i play naturally. Now, i am equally as good in basketball, i have played in rec leagues, with co-workers, pick-ups etc. It’s just that with basketball it takes a lot of co-ordination to find a court etc, will people show up what not.
With pick-up soccer, I found a group of guys, I believe it must have been 3 years ago who play wed (when warm), sat, and sunday. Some may say ditch soccer and play basketball, i think after a certain point i will strongly consider that.

Now, i will preface this and state the position that i am very adept and very good at that is a forward/striker. It is a position that i have played my whole life, soccer is one of those sports that i can play any given position, probably due to my natural ability. I enjoy it, its fun, and you get to keep in shape, even though my fitness level has fluctuated, over the past couple of years.

As a general observation, one thing that has become increasingly clear is that the older you get, the more you are prone to picking up these nick knacks. So i will document some of the injuries, recovery period, treatment, frustrations fraught with etc.

Up until i was 30 rarely if ever did i pick up injuries, beyond the occasional shin splints, back spasms, mild sprains, and knee pain from playing a lot of basketball.

With that age, it seems like my fortune turned for the worse. My first major injury happened i believe 3 years ago, it was a nice warm Wednesday and playing ball as usual. I got the ball and was about to shoot in scoring position, the defender just threw himself cavalierly in front of me, and i struck his leg. The pain that shot through my right foot was so intense i limped off. I immediately knew i was hurt really bad. Driving home was a pain, and not to mention climbing up stairs. I immediately felt it may be a bad ankle sprain, but deep down i knew it was something worse.

For months i treated it cautiously. RICE method, however the was no improvement. Now, some of you may say why not go to the Dr. At that point i had insurance, but it was just terrible. So i just kept saying i will exhaust all treatment options and then turn to the Dr. I went online and bought an air cast/boot, and for months i was in it. Still no improvement, i guess it was time to turn to the Dr, 6 months after. I was referred to an Ortho, who ordered an MRI, it turns out that i had a torn peroneal brevis tendon (3cm). Ouch, surgery was recommended. I pondered that thought and scheduled surgery sometime in April, i chickened out and rescheduled in May, all in while in the boot. What i noticed was that my leg had improved, i could walk sans pain, of course a torn tendon is still a torn tendon. A co-worker of mine gave me an ankle support bracelet , i started doing light jogging 8 months after. I still felt pain, and one day i just went out there to play. No issues, could cut, run, do whatever i did pre injury. Of course the is the occasional pain, but nothing too serious. Hey a torn tendon is a torn tendon. I was back playing 3x a week, it felt great.

Fitness came back and i was back in full form, i wont lie between the next couple of months i was in the best shape of my life. People often asked, have you had surgery and the answer was No. It was great, needless to say i cancelled surgery. I personally believe mobilizing the leg in a cast for 8 months helped a lot. Tendon is still torn but i can play.

Next major injury, a thumb injury July 4th 2012. You may just say just a thumb. Now, this injury is one that i could have clearly avoided, sometimes when i play i think i am still 20. So an opposing player kinda gave me the shove and i fell down and i just bounced back by using my hand to cushion my fall and spring myself back up. After the game i felt a sharp pain in my thumb, pain so intense it dawned on me that genius you shouldn’t have done what you did. Days, weeks later the pain just kept on getting worse. I have a nurse friend who right of the bat told me it was not broken, so i did my normal treatment, i was still playing because shoot it was a thumb. It kept on getting worse, i booked an appointment with the Dr, x rays were ordered, nothing broken and i was referred to a thumb specialist. He observed it, said nothing was torn, the pain kept on getting worse and he ordered an MRI, the MRI showed nothing torn. I was referred to an occupational therapist (what a waste of time and $$$). A few pointless appointments, a cast molded, physio etc and no improvement. Dr ordered a cortisone shot, temporary relief as is with the case with shots and pain back. Over the past two years i have some good days and bad days, on the days that it gets worse i take Ibuprofen, and it calms down. It is still painful, but i manage the pain. I also noticed that sometimes when it gets cold it is painful. I don’t think my thumb will ever be the same again, I know there is something wrong but what can you do.

Third injury August 2013, now this injury was more like a foreshadow so to speak. It was a day that i debated should i play or shouldnt i, i decided and i suffered a major injury. I was having a good game, feeling it and then a cross came in i was about to snap it with my left foot and then i heard a pop in my groin area. First time i have ever heard a pop when suffering an injury. My body language just sunk, my face just looked like i had the life sucked out of me, i gingerly walked off the field. And drove home while barely able to walk. Started RICE treatment promptly, for weeks i couldn’t walk but continued treatment slight improvement, but needless to say i was out of commission for months. Slight improvement, i decided to book an appointment with my Dr to rule out a torn groin. A xray was ordered initially, nothing was found. My walking improved slightly, and then i had an MRI since the improvement was marginal. the Dr said groin not torn but a sprain of a muscle around the area. I cant remember what it was. I started running, albeit with pain, and then started playing. Up until this point i still feel pain, but i can play. A case where it may improve over time or i just have to deal with the occasional discomfort.

 

My fourth major injury well depending on if you have suffered a similar type, was a mallet finger. Of course up until that point i never had it before.  Once again, an element of foreshadowing here. I had vowed to play D, this day. I occasionally do that to switch it up. And the moment i join an attack we score, but i slip and jam my finger on the ground. Immediately the tip on my right finger is bent. I tried to straighten it out but it wouldn’t. I peaced out and went to the ER, that is when the Dr said i had a mallet finger, i should splint it for a couple of weeks etc. He referred me to my thumb surgeon, what was the point to get charged again. I just emailed the Dr, he looked at the x-ray and said nothing was broken an i should splint. I did this for about 8 weeks, it was uncomfortable, but i still played. Currently the finger doesnt look normal compared to the left. It is functional, and that is all i care at this point.

Those have been there 4 major injuries i have suffered, currently i have a sprained ankle, just great.  Probably will be out of commision the next couple of weeks. I am treating it with the RICE method, tens unit-that helped me with my groin injury. Lessons learned freak injuries happen, i have to be careful, seriously reconsider switching to basketball-both are equally fun, and slow it down a little. I play more cautiously, but these things happen.

I have picked up hamstring injuries as well, and the key is to rest it for six weeks etc. And occasionally i get intense back spasms, which i have had since i was 18. The occasional knee pain, but that is more of a product of when i gain slight weight and sometimes when i play bball. Why continue some of you may ask, simple i hate going the gym. I would say i mix it up and i have had for some years. Feel free to comment if you have had similar injuries, advice on my stupidity etc. I am always open to offering some treatment modalities since having undergone a couple of therapy sessions i bought some equipments etc.

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