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COMMON INJURIES INFORMATION

If you have sustained any of the following injuries from which you have not recovered, you should consult with your healthcare professional for medical advice or you may contact us and we will schedule an appointment with one of our medical specialist on your behalf, you can email us at patientmanager@healthcarebarbados.com or visit our Contact Us page for details

Ankle Injuries

  • Achilles Tendonitis
  • Lateral Ankle Inversion Sprain
  • Morton’s Neuroma
  • Peroneal Tendonitis

Back Injuries

  • Herniated Disc
  • Low Back Pain
  • Low Back Strain
  • Spondylolisthesis

Elbow/Forearm Injuries

  • Cubital Tunnel Syndrome
  • Fractures
  • Golfer’s Elbow
  • Pronator Syndrome
  • Tennis Elbow

Foot Injuries

  • Morton’s Neuroma
  • Plantar Fasciitis
  • Stress fractures
  • Turf Toe

Head Injuries

  • Concussion
  • Lacerations Bumps and Bruises
  • Subdural Hematoma

Hip Injuries

  • Groin
  • Hip Pointer
  • Iliotibial Band Syndrome
  • Piriformis Syndrome
  • Strains
  • Quad

Knee Injuries

  • ACL Injury
  • MCL Injury
  • Meniscus Injuries
  • Patellofemoral Pain Syndrome
  • Sprains

Lower Leg Injuries

  • Achilles’ Tendonitis
  • Anterior shin splints
  • Fractures P
  • osterior Tibialis Tendonitis
  • Shin Splints

Neck Injuries

Shoulder Injuries

  • Acromioclavicular Joint Injuries
  • Adhesive Capsulitis (Frozen Shoulder)
  • Anterior Shoulder Dislocation
  • Rotator Cuff Tendonitis:
  • Rotator Cuff Impingement
  • Rotator Cuff Tear
  • Superior Labrum Anterior and Posterior

Wrist/Hand Injuries

  • Carpal Tunnel Syndrome
  • De Quervain’s Syndrome
  • Fractures to Hand or Wrist
  • Guyon Canal Syndrome
  • Mallet Finger
  • Tendonitis
  • Tendon/Ligament Injuries to Fingers
  • Trigger Finger

Ankle Injuries

Achilles Tendonitis:

The Achilles tendon is the large tendon found at the back side of the foot and ankle. This tendon attaches the calf muscles to the ankle and allows the ankle to be pointed in a downward position and propel us when we walk. This tendon injury is characterized by pain with walking and swelling and tenderness at the tendon. The tendon will typically feel worse with walking and running.

Lateral Ankle Inversion Sprain:

This injury typically occurs when an individual “rolls” their ankle, such as in slipping off a sidewalk, stairs or during sports. Often times, this injury is characterized by swelling at the outside ankle bone (lateral malleolus) with possible bruising if the injury is severe enough. An ankle sprain results in damage to the ligaments of the outer ankle, although a small fracture can occur at the outer ankle bone. Professional management of this injury is encouraged.

Peroneal Tendonitis:

The peroneal tendons are the tendons at the outside of the ankle. In some instances, these tendons can become injured resulting in swelling and pain at the outside of the ankle, slightly underneath the outer ankle bone. These tendons can also be injured following a lateral ankle sprain when the peroneal muscle is forced to contract quickly to prevent the ankle from rolling inward too far. It is advisable to seeking medical attention for management of this injury.

Posterior Tibialis Tendonitis:

The posterior tibialis muscle is found at the inner aspect of the lower leg with the tendon extending down the leg and along the inner aspect of the foot. The function of this muscle and tendon is to support the arch of the foot. This tendon can become injured with running and also if the foot pronates or collapses too much. In this instance, the muscle and tendon become overworked resulting in swelling and irritation of the tendon. Often, this injury requires a biomechanical assessment by a medical professional to resolve aggravating factors and resolve the injury. Initial management can include ice and rest.

Stress fractures:

A stress fracture can occur in any bone; however, one area common for injury is at the 5th metatarsal or the lateral bone of the foot. Usually the area of the fracture is point tender and feels worse with running and sometimes with walking. A stress fracture is typically diagnosed with the use of a bone scan or an MRI.

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Back Injuries

Herniated Disc:

Discs are located between the vertebrae of the spine to help minimize shock and help optimize movement. As we age, the discs lose their elasticity and may tear or bulge onto the spinal nerves. This can produce extreme muscle spasms and pain to low back and legs and/or numbness and tingling to legs and toes.

Low Back Pain:

Contributing factors to low back pain can include trauma resulting from falls, vehicular or sporting accidents, poor body mechanics and work ergonomics, degenerative diseases resulting in decreased strength and muscular/structural imbalances. Symptoms may manifest themselves as pain located around the waistline and/or lower extremities, and possibly, numbness and tingling to the lower extremities. If any of these symptoms persist or worsen, seek immediate medical attention.

Low Back Strain:

Muscle strains may occur as a result of poor body mechanics with daily activities/work tasks or unexpected movement (i.e. lifting heavy objects, slipping and falling, motor vehicle or sporting accidents. All of these can cause the muscles to contract beyond their normal limits placing stress on the spine. Consult a physician for a diagnosis to determine the severity of the injury.

Spondylolisthesis:

Spondylolisthesis is a condition in which a bone in the spinal column (vertebra) slips out of the proper position onto the bone below it. The individual may or may not experience pain and is usually the result of repetitive stress to the spine. In adults, the most common cause is wear and tear on the cartilage and bones such as is associated with arthritis and other degenerative diseases.

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Elbow/Forearm Injuries

Tennis Elbow:

Also known as lateral epicondylitis, tennis elbow stems from overuse, improper muscle strength, and repetitive movement of the wrist or elbow where the tendons at the elbow become stressed due to poor mechanics (i.e. typing, racquetball, tennis, golf). Localized pain at the lateral (outside) elbow is present with wrist and elbow movement.

Golfer’s Elbow:

Also known as medial epicondylitis, this condition is similar to tennis elbow with associated pain and decreased movement, but golfer’s elbow occurs on the inside of the elbow. Golfer’s elbow presents similar signs and symptoms as tennis elbow and is also difficult to heal if not handled properly.

Pronator Syndrome:

This condition involves the compression of the median nerve in the forearm. The median nerve passes into the forearm down the front of the elbow and passes under ligaments and into muscles. Compression of this nerve in the forearm generally occurs as it enters between two heads of a muscle—the pronator teres (thus the name “pronator” syndrome). The pronator teres muscle turns the palm of the hand down. Patients with this condition usually complain of an aching pain in the forearm, increased pain with gripping while the forearm is pronated (palm down), decreased strength, and forearm fatigue.

Cubital Tunnel Syndrome:

This condition involves the ulnar nerve as it travels down the inside of the arm behind the elbow. This nerve lies in a groove on the inside of the elbow. If you’ve ever hit your “funny bone” then you’ve experienced the symptoms of Cubital Tunnel Syndrome—elbow pain and numbness/tingling in the ring and small fingers. If left untreated, it can progress to significant hand weakness and a “claw” deformity of the ring and small fingers. It is exacerbated by repetitive or static bending of the elbow, arthritis, or trauma to the elbow.

Fractures:

Fractures may be caused by falling on an outstretched arm or by direct trauma to the elbow. The elbow has three joints that are surrounded by ligaments. Because of its complex structure, improper alignment of the bones and any associated ligament damage can significantly reduce elbow motion, stability, and function. It is very important to seek medical attention if an elbow fracture is suspected.

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Foot Injuries

Achilles’ Tendonitis:

Inflammation of the Achilles’ tendon caused by overuse injuries (running, jumping), as well as decreased calf strength and flexibility. Tenderness and swelling are present over the tendon along with pain with walking, negotiating stairs, and running. Consultation with a Physiotherapist regarding flexibility training, and lower extremity strengthening in addition to foot biomechanics and proper footwear should be considered.

Anterior shin splints:

Pain is on the outside of the lower leg and is associated with those runners who have a loud heel strike when running.

Morton’s Neuroma:

This condition refers to the mass of tissue that surrounds the nerve sheath of the nerves that innervate the toes. It commonly occurs between the third and fourth toes and can cause burning, numbness, and tingling to the toes. Proper shoe wear is a must to avoid compressing the toes.

Plantar Fasciitis:

Plantar Fasciitis is a term used to describe pain along the inside arch and heel. Increased pain occurs after the first few steps in the morning or after prolonged sitting. Plantar fasciitis can occur in individuals with poor foot biomechanics (excessive foot pronation), decreased flexibility and strength in the surrounding musculature. Individuals suffering with the condition may want to consult with a podiatrist for advice on treating the condition.

Posterior shin splints:

Pain is on the inside of the lower leg toward the ankle. In both instances, weak muscles in the lower leg accompanied by improper footwear and running mechanics may exacerbate the symptoms and possibly lead to stress fractures. Consultation with a Physiotherapist is recommended to focus on pain reduction, lower extremity flexibility and strengthening, proper running mechanics, and proper footwear.

Shin Splints:

Overuse musculotendinous injury that can be caused by abnormal biomechanics, poor conditioning, and improper training. Pain can manifest in two locations: anterior or posterior.
Turf Toe: This condition is caused by repetitive overuse or trauma to the big toe, resulting in the big toe hyperextending. This condition can be very painful, especially with walking or recreational activities involving stop and go movements.

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Head Injuries

Lacerations, Bumps and Bruises:

A head injury may be mild or severe depending on what caused it. Some injuries produce bleeding within your skull, while others cause damage on the outside of your head, such as in the form of lacerations, bumps or bruises. These injuries are commonly caused by falls or motor vehicle accidents. Injuries to the head could result in serious complications, including disability or even death. If you have suffered a head injury you should seek immediate medical attention from a qualified medical practitioner.

Concussion:

Concussion is the sudden but short-lived loss of mental function that occurs after a blow or other injury to the head. A concussion is among the most common, but least serious type of head or brain injury one may sustain, however specialist medical attention is still required to investigate and treat the injury.

Subdural Hematoma:

Subdural hematomas are usually the result of a serious head injury, sometimes referred to as an “acute” subdural hematoma. Acute subdural hematomas are among the deadliest of all head injuries, bleeding fills the brain area very rapidly, compressing brain tissue, which often results in brain injury, serious disability or even death. Individuals suffering such an injury require immediate medical emergency assistance.

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Hip Injuries

Hip Pointer:

A hip pointer is a bruise caused by direct trauma or impact to the front hip bone. This injury can produce extreme pain and limit normal motion at the hip and trunk. Because of close proximity of internal organs, follow-up with a physician is advised to rule out potential fracture or internal injury.

Piriformis Syndrome:

This condition refers to irritation of the piriformis muscle which lies underneath the gluteus muscle, or buttock. Because the sciatic nerve passes underneath or through the piriformis muscle, burning or numbness/tingling may occur due to nerve irritation. Pain may start in the buttock and radiate down the affected leg. It is important to seek proper medical attention to rule out referred pain from the spine.

Iliotibial Band Syndrome:

This is caused by inflammation of the thick, fibrous tissue that runs from the top of the hip to just below the knee. This injury commonly occurs in runners and can be very debilitating. Consultation with a rehabilitation expert may be required to reduce pain and inflammation and restore proper muscle balances throughout the pelvic region.

Groin:

An injury to the inner thigh caused by running, jumping, twisting, kicking. Signs and symptoms may range from mild tenderness over the muscle involved to the inability to contract the muscle and walk. There will be localized pain and swelling and in severe cases, you may have bruising to the inner thigh, indicating bleeding to the injured muscle. A consultation with a medical specialist is recommended, to properly diagnose and treat the condition.

Quad:

Injury to the front of the thigh caused by blunt force trauma or forceful contraction of the quad muscle when the hip is bent and the leg is straight (as in a kicking movement). Signs and symptoms may range from mild tenderness to the touch to the inability to walk without pain. Bruising may also be present with associated swelling. In severe cases, consultation with a physician may be warranted to regain proper mobility.

Strains:

Injuries to the muscles and their tendons due to a forceful contraction of the muscle involved.

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Knee Injuries

ACL Injury:

The ACL injury is the most common injury to the knee. This ligament prevents the lower leg from moving forward on the upper leg. The mechanism of injury is from a twisting motion when the foot is firmly planted. The degree of severity ranges from a mild stretch of the fibers (Grade I) to complete rupture of the ligament (Grade III). The individual may feel or hear a “pop” with associated swelling. The individual may also report a feeling of “giving out” of the knee, limiting the function of the knee. An orthopedic specialist will be required to diagnose and recommend treatment options for the injury.

MCL Injury:

This ligament lies along the inside of the knee and can be damaged by direct trauma from the outside of the knee towards the inside while the foot is planted. The individual may experience pain while walking, climbing stairs, and prolonged sitting. A Rehabilitation expert may be required to work with the individual to reestablish range of motion and strength.

Meniscus Injuries:

Commonly called torn cartilage, this is an injury to one of the two circular pads between the upper and lower legs. They function to decrease shock to the knees and distribute weight bearing forces through the legs. The mechanism of injury is a compression force associated with a twisting motion. A “pop” may be heard, but there is usually increased pain along the joint line of the knee. Signs and symptoms include pain, swelling, knee “locking up” or the feeling that the knee is stuck, and difficulty with walking and stairs. An orthopedic consultation is suggested to rule out trauma to other structures.

Sprains:

Injuries to the ligaments in a joint. The knee has four main stabilizing ligaments, any of which can cause problems if torn.

Patellofemoral Pain Syndrome:

Patellofemoral pain syndrome is categorized by pain in the front of the knee. It is sometimes caused by wearing down, roughening or softening of the cartilage under the kneecap, due to overuse and excess weight, but can also be caused by blunt force trauma to the knee. The injury could result in muscle imbalances, walking abnormalities or misalignment of the knee caps. Individuals suffering from such an injury should consult with an orthopaedic specialist for management of the injury.

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Lower Leg Injuries

Fractures:

The leg has three bones that can fracture — the femur (the thighbone) and the tibia and fibula in the lower leg. The tibia (shinbone) is the larger of the two bones of the lower leg. Like femur fractures, tibia fractures often occur because of direct, high-impact trauma, especially during motor vehicle accidents. However, the tibia can also fracture from a low impact incident even in healthy people, if the lower leg is bent or twisted at just the right angle. Such injuries usually require immediate medical assistance by a qualified medical practitioner.

Stress Fractures

Stress fractures are tiny cracks in a bone and are most common in the weight-bearing bones of the lower leg and foot. Stress fractures are caused by the repetitive application of force, often by overuse, such as repeatedly jumping up and down or running long distances. Stress fractures can also arise from normal use of a bone that's been weakened by a condition such as osteoporosis. You should consult with your healthcare provider regarding management of the condition.

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Neck Injuries

Neck injuries are among the most common types of injuries and can originate from any area of your neck including muscles, bones, joints, tendons, ligaments, or nerves. Injuries can result from everyday regular activities involving work related tasks, sports or even from maintaining a bad posture. However one major contributing factor to neck injuries is in the case of motor vehicle accidents commonly referred to as a “whiplash” injury, where the occupant’s vehicle is usually impacted from the rear. This could cause damage to any of the following,  The bones and joints of the cervical spine known as the vertebrae.  The discs that separate the cervical vertebrae and absorb shock as you move.  The muscles and ligaments in the neck that hold the cervical spine together. You should consult your physician regarding any persistent neck pain or if your pain resulted from an accident or fall.

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Shoulder Injuries

Rotator Cuff Tendonitis:

This condition is often associated with repetitive, abnormal stress to the tendons of the rotator cuff (four small muscles that surround and steer shoulder movement) resulting in inflammation and pain. Rotator cuff tendonitis may cause sharp, acute pain in the shoulder or upper arm aggravated after periods of activity such as overhead throwing or lifting. Pain may also be experienced when dressing, grooming, sleeping on the affected shoulder, reaching high over head, or behind the back. Functional weakness is usually present with lifting during everyday activities (especially between waist and shoulder height). If the condition is left untreated, the tendonitis may progress to a partial thickness tear of the rotator cuff, often requiring surgery.

Anterior Shoulder Dislocation:

This injury typically occurs as a direct result of trauma to the ligaments and capsular tissues that surround the ball and socket (glenohumeral joint) of the shoulder. Some common mechanisms of injury include being hit behind the arm while the shoulder is positioned in an overhead throwing motion and falling onto an outstretched arm. This condition contributes to a sense of instability in the shoulder combined with an inability to perform certain daily activities and sports. Those who experience a shoulder dislocation are typically evaluated by a physician for reduction and to rule out fracture or cartilage (glenoid labrum) damage.

SLAP (Superior Labrum Anterior and Posterior) Lesion:

This condition involves injury to the superior (top) portion of the labrum of the shoulder joint. The labrum is a cartilaginous ring that serves to deepen the socket of the joint providing both stability and a site for muscular attachment for the biceps brachii. Common causes of a SLAP lesion include falling onto an outstretched hand, overhead lifting, and overhead throwing. Common complaints include instability within the shoulder causing a vague ache. In addition, some patients may report catching, popping, or clicking within the joint during functional activities

Rotator Cuff Impingement:

This condition involves a progressive, mechanical impingement of the rotator cuff tendons beneath the bony architecture (coracoacromial arch) of the shoulder joint. The resultant impingement of the cuff tendons results in significant shoulder pain increased with the performance of overhead and functional activities. Common causes of cuff impingement include bony abnormalities and rotator cuff tendon thickening.

Acromioclavicular Joint Injuries:

The acromioclavicular (AC) joint (the connection between the collar bone and the shoulder blade) is commonly injured as a result of either a direct force to the tip of the shoulder or through an indirect force sustained during a fall on an outstretched hand. This resultant force results in disruption to the capsule and ligaments that supports the bony architecture of the AC joint. The patient with an acute AC joint injury will typically cradle the involved arm against the body with the uninvolved hand for support. This posture helps to decrease the pull of the weight of the arm against the ligamentous and capsular tissues that have been disrupted.

Adhesive Capsulitis (Frozen Shoulder):

This condition involves stiffening (freezing) and inflammation of the soft tissues (joint capsule and ligaments) that surround the shoulder joint. The stiffening of these structures creates severe loss of functional shoulder movement, pain surrounding the joint, and an inability to sleep on the affected side.

Rotator Cuff Tear (Partial Thickness and Full Thickness):

This condition involves complete (full thickness) or incomplete (partial thickness) disruption of the tendons of the rotator cuff muscle group. Common causes of injury include direct trauma to the shoulder, repetitive overhead lifting, and participation in sports that require overhead throwing. In addition to these causes, some patients experience a cuff tear simply as a direct result of a degenerative process with no specific trauma or activity associated with the injury. A common presentation for a patient with a rotator cuff tear includes lateral shoulder pain affecting the ability to sleep accompanied with functional weakness limiting his or her ability to lift the arm against gravity.

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Wrist/Hand Injuries

De Quervain’s Syndrome:

This condition involves inflammation of the tendons of the thumb. Pain is very noticeable in the wrist and thumb during general thumb use and during gripping and pinching activities.

Fractures to Hand or Wrist:

A common mechanism of injury is falling on an outstretched arm with the wrist hyper-extended. Proper alignment of the bone(s) is essential for normal healing and restoration of motion. In addition, because of important vessels and nerves surrounding these structures, it is very important to follow-up with an orthopedic surgeon or a hand specialist.

Tendonitis:

Tendonitis, simply put, is inflammation of the tendon, which can be caused by sudden trauma or as a result of a repetitive strain injury. A tendon is what connects muscle to bone, and it typically crosses a joint. Overuse of the joint or muscle causes inflammation of the tendon. Tendonitis is very common in the wrist and hand.

Carpal Tunnel Syndrome:

The carpal tunnel is a narrow passageway in your wrist that allows nine tendons in the fingers and thumb, as well as the median nerve, to travel into the hand. Pressure inside the carpal tunnel may be increased by repetitive wrist motions, gripping, or sustained wrist and finger positions. This increased pressure on the nerve may cause wrist pain, numbness and tingling in the thumb and first two fingers, and eventual hand weakness.

Trigger Finger:

Trigger finger, also known as stenosing tenosynovitis, can occur in any of the fingers or thumb. It is caused by the swelling of one of the tendons that bend the finger or thumb. This tendon inflammation causes the finger to catch in a bent position. Straightening of the finger will then cause it to snap. Trigger finger can be associated with chronic inflammation (i.e. rheumatoid arthritis), overuse of the hand, or from using tools with hard or sharp edges.

Mallet Finger:

Mallet finger is an injury to the fingertip. It commonly occurs when the tip of the finger is hit or struck. With this injury, the tendon that straightens the tip of the finger is disrupted, and the finger ends up in a bent position. Mallet finger can also be associated with a fracture of the fingertip. You may need to see a specialist if there is a fracture or if the finger does not heal properly.

Tendon/Ligament Injuries to Fingers:

These types of injuries usually occur with direct impact or trauma to the fingers (“jammed finger”) or forceful gripping of an object that is moving. Pain may occur with movement, or in some cases, finger movement may not occur at all if a tendon is ruptured. Proper medical attention by a physician is necessary to avoid permanent deformity to the finger involved.

Guyon Canal Syndrome:

This condition involves the ulnar nerve and artery as they pass into the hand at the wrist (on the small-finger side of the hand). It is also known as “handlebar palsy”—named for pressure on the ulnar nerve in the hand from the handlebars of a bicycle during long-distance cycling. Pressure on this nerve causes numbness and tingling in the ring and small finger, pain on the small-finger side of the hand, and eventual hand weakness.

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