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Soft tissue injuries: Types and management options | Health

Soft tissue injuries are the misery of every physically active person’s existence and they are the most prevalent injuries, whether in a professional or amateur athlete where high-grade injuries often do not self-heal, leading to more injuries and future joint damage if not surgically addressed. Many activities can cause muscle, ligament, and tendon soft-tissue injury. As a result, there may be pain, swelling, bruising and injury.

In an interview with HT Lifestyle, Dr Bhushan Sabnis, Sports Injury Specialist and Joint Preservation Surgeon at Nexus Day Surgery Centre, revealed that soft-tissue injuries are divided into the following categories:

● Contusions (bruises)

● Sprains (ligament injuries)

● Tendinosis/ tendonitis

● Bursitis

● Stress-related injuries

● Strains (muscular injuries)

He highlighted that athletes and non-athletes suffer from many of the same soft-tissue ailments and following an injury, soft tissue structures in the body go through a natural healing process that is divided into phases.

The timing for healing is determined by the following factors:

● the individual; the nature of the damage; age; and general health state.

● Physiotherapy promotes healthy recovery, lowering the chance of re-injury, chronic pain, and dysfunction.

● One of the most significant hazards of future damage is how the soft tissue has healed or recovered from a prior injury/surgery.

Dr Bhushan Sabnis said, “Soft tissue healing is described as the replacement of damaged tissue in the body with live tissue. This procedure is divided into two stages: regeneration and repair. The wound healing response “transitions” into the next stage of healing with no defined borders between stages. While it is not always feasible to prevent certain ailments, what counts most is coming back into activity quickly and at the same level, which is critical for the active individual, especially sportsmen.”

He added, “A common example is an anterior cruciate ligament injury, sometimes known as an ACL rupture. This is one of the most prevalent knee injuries sustained by sportsmen and exercise enthusiasts. A high-grade ACL injury necessitates key-hole surgery to repair/ reconstruct the torn ligament (Arthroscopic ACL Reconstruction) to allow for a return to sports activity while also preventing future joint damage.”

Explaining that this procedure has progressed technically over the years to enhance functional results, Dr Bhushan Sabnis elaborated, “ACL graft augmentation with a high-strength suture is one recent advancement (Internal brace). Recent scientific research has indicated that this approach is safe, with the added benefit of lowering the chance of ACL graft re-tear and thereby enhancing functional results. This surgery has also developed in terms of technique and fixation in order to enhance functional results. We frequently conduct ligament repair/bone augmentation when appropriate utilising low profile knotless sutures instead of typical metallic implants, with satisfactory results.”

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