Doctors can use ultrasonography (ultrasound) to evaluate and diagnose muscular trauma in professional athletes on-site, which helps them to determine whether or not a player's injuries are severe enough to take them out of the game, according to a study to be presented at the ARRS 2010 Annual Meeting in San Diego, CA.
"Muscular trauma is very common in athletes, especially soccer players," said Ashok Kumar Nath, MD, lead author of the study. "Ultrasound is a readily available, radiation free imaging modality that allows us to diagnose muscle tears on-site," said Nath.
The study, performed in Muscat, Oman, included 50 male soccer players with possible muscular trauma in the thigh and calf region. Ultrasound was performed on-site during a soccer game. "Forty-six players were found to have either a complete or partial muscle tear. As a result their play was discontinued," said Nath.
"If we diagnose a muscle tear on-site, we know whether or not a player should continue playing or not. If a partial tear goes undiagnosed and a player continues to play, the continued stress of the game could result in a complete muscle tear, which is much more difficult to treat," he said.