Physician shares tips for assessing sports injuries
Americans reported more than 8 million sports-related injuries each year on average, according to the Centers for Disease Control. When it comes to these types of injuries, doctors said it isn't always easy to tell which are minor and which might require more extensive medical care.
In this week's Family First segment, KRCG 13 spoke with SSM Health Urgent Care physician Dr. Simon Mckeown about how to quickly choose course of treatment when you're not sure how serious a sports injury is.
Dr. Mckeown said Urgent Care is an ideal first stop for sports injuries, unless it's immediately obvious a bone has been broken.
"Maybe your foot is very sore, it's bruised; you may have difficulty walking on it so you may have to get somebody else to drive you. But if you're in reasonably good shape and we can get you into the X-ray machine, then that's appropriate for Urgent Care," he said.
Dr. Mckeown said an easy way to evaluate if Urgent Care will be able to treat your sports injury is to ask yourself whether you can walk in without a stretcher.
"Now, some patients may come in on crutches, but that's still OK," he said. "We can do X-rays, we can do splinting. However, we don't actually do definitive casting and we don't do correction of angulated fractures."
The emergency room may be able handle more serious sports injuries; but, if your injury is more moderate, Dr. Mckeown said coming to Urgent Care can have some major benefits.
"If you have an injury that you'd like someone else to look at - this is a good place to come. We don't always have to do the maximum workup. We can look at something and we can reassure you that everything is gonna be fine," he said. "The thing with Urgent Care is that you can get in and out quickly, it doesn't involve the kind of costs that the emergency room does, and you get a provider looking at it and giving you an assessment, and hopefully a plan. If it's just an injury that can get better in 3 - 5 days, we'll let you know that - and we'll give you some ideas as to how to treat it."