Sports, Pain &
Are All The Practitioners Licensed?
All sports physiatrists are licensed medical practitioners who focus on the wellbeing of a patient. In particular, they are brain, bone, nerve and muscle specialists who seek a holistic approach to relieve their wards of pain and diseases. Typically, physiatrists work within a multidisciplinary team of physical therapists, chiropractors, and orthopedists to ensure the wellbeing of their patients. The ultimate goal is always to get their patient free of any disease/injuries and to relieve him or her of any pain that they may be suffering.
For a physiatrist to be licensed in the United States, he or she has to undergo residency training for a period of four years. This period includes a one-year internship program. There are numerous courses offered across the United States and accreditation of the programs is the responsibility of the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education. There are about seven specialist areas of physiatry and these include sports medicine, spinal cord injuries among others.
Licensed physiatrists deal with a wide variety of medical problems. These range from simple problems like sore muscles to serious conditions such as spinal cord injuries. Another common treatment area for hysiatrists is acute and chronic pain. This could be as a result of sports injuries but could also be as a result of a disease such as rheumatoid arthritis, osteoarthritis, and fibromyalgia. Often, physiatrists will work with the primary caregiver and will focus on speeding up recovery and ensuring that the pain is managed properly.
This is a specialized area of physiatry where the focus is on recovery from sporting related injuries. Due to the physical nature of most sports, sports injuries are common, and some can even be lifethreatening. The goal of treatment in such cases is to treat pain, ensure recovery and just as importantly, ensure that the athlete is rehabilitated and can go back to playing again.
For physiatrists to be effective, they must be able to have a very good knowledge of the patient’s medical background and how it affects the current medical problem that he or she is dealing with. This is ne of the reasons why their presence in a multidisciplinary healthcare team is so important because the patient’s doctor is usually part of this team and can supply the required information. Physiatrists will also be concerned about other things such as what wheelchair (if applicable) suits the patient, the right prosthetic for the athlete and much more.