BMJ Open Sport & Exercise Medicine
ISSN / EISSN : 2055-7647 / 2055-7647
Published by: BMJ (10.1136)
Total articles ≅ 711
Latest articles in this journal
BMJ Open Sport & Exercise Medicine, Volume 7; https://doi.org/10.1136/bmjsem-2021-001136
Achilles tendinopathy (AT) is a common and disabling musculoskeletal condition. First-line management involving Achilles tendon loading exercise with, or without, other modalities may not resolve the problem in up to 44% of cases. Many people receive injections. Yet there are no injection treatments with demonstrated long-term efficacy. The aim of the trial is to examine the 12-month efficacy of high-volume injection (HVI) with corticosteroid and HVI without corticosteroid versus sham injection among individuals with AT. The trial is a three-arm, parallel group, double-blind, superiority randomised controlled trial that will assess the efficacy of HVI with and without corticosteroid versus sham up to 12 months. We will block-randomise 192 participants to one of the three groups with a 1:1:1 ratio, and both participants and outcome assessors will be blinded to treatment allocation. All participants will receive an identical evidence-based education and exercise intervention. The primary outcome measure will be the Victorian Institute of Sport Assessment – Achilles (VISA-A) at 12 months post-randomisation, a validated, reliable and disease-specific measure of pain and function. Choice of secondary outcomes was informed by core outcome domains for tendinopathy. Data will be analysed using the intention-to-treat principle. Ethics approval was obtained via the Monash University Human Ethics Committee (no: 13138). The study is expected to be completed in 2024 and disseminated via peer review publication and conference presentations. Australia and New Zealand Clinical trials registry (ACTRN12619001455156)
BMJ Open Sport & Exercise Medicine, Volume 7; https://doi.org/10.1136/bmjsem-2021-001062
Objectives Lower limb posterior chain injury (PCI) is common among athletic populations, with multifactorial risk factors including age, previous injury, strength measurements, range of motion and training load. Biomechanics are commonly considered in the prevention and rehabilitation of PCI by performance staff. However, there is no documented testing method to assess for associations between biomechanics and PCI. The aim of this study was to investigate whether there is an association between an easily applicable, novel biomechanical assessment tool and PCI. Methods Fifty male elite-level rugby union athletes (age 22.83±5.08) participating in the highest tier of England were tested at the start of the 2019 preseason period and PCIs (N=48) were recorded over the 2019/2020 playing season. Participants’ biomechanics were analysed using two-dimensional video analysis against an injury risk score (IRS) system in the performance of the combined movement—prone hip extension and knee flexion. Participants’ biomechanics in carrying out this movement were scored against the 10-point IRS, where the more compensatory movement recorded sees an increase in an individual’s IRS. Participants’ IRS was then compared against the number of PCIs sustained and Spearman’s correlation coefficient was used for statistical analysis. Results There is a significant association between IRS and PCI (R=0.542, p<0.001). Linear regression demonstrated that an increase in 1 in IRS was associated with a 35% increase in PCI incidence (R²=0.346). Conclusion A significance between the IRS and PCI provides preliminary support for its use as an injury risk assessment tool.
BMJ Open Sport & Exercise Medicine, Volume 7; https://doi.org/10.1136/bmjsem-2021-001178
Sports medicine is a medical specialty that supports the performance of professional and amateur athletes while maintaining their health. Sports medicine professionals need to ensure the safe participation of athletes in sports activities achieved through a periodical preparticipation evaluation (PPE) and a regular medical monitoring of the athletes’ health in accordance with the latest recommendations regarding health condition and medical history, physical working capacity, training period and programme, recovery, nutrition, use of supplements, injuries prevention and safe return to play. In order to harmonise these national variations in the content and application of the PPE, the EFSMA Scientific and Educational Commission proposes a ‘gold standard’ for elite athletes across Europe. Important objectives of PPE are early detection and prevention of severe complications during sports activities both in leisure time and competitive sports. The PPE should entail the following diagnostic components: health status, anthropometry, functional and exercise capacity. It is of utmost importance to develop and implement preventive strategies such as the PPE. Besides monitoring the health status of athletes, the PPE plays an important role in the selection process, bringing valuable information for coaches and supporting a personalised treatment approach. Screening of athletes through a standardised digital PPE could be beneficial for a better understanding of the impact of long-term physical activity. Furthermore, PPE leads the scientific community to a way of working closer together in the interest of the athletes.
BMJ Open Sport & Exercise Medicine, Volume 7; https://doi.org/10.1136/bmjsem-2021-001227
The coronavirus pandemic has given everyone in society an education on the harms of spread of respiratory illness. Young healthy athletes are far less likely to suffer severe adverse consequences of viral illnesses than the elderly and frail, but they are not completely immune. Chronic fatigue (overtraining) is an uncommon outcome and myocarditis a rare one, but they both warrant due consideration. It is, therefore, a sensible individual strategy to ‘stay home when sick’ if only for these risks. Traditionally though, athletes have tended to push through (train and play when ill) because of competing concerns, such as key events/matches and ‘not wanting to let teammates down’. Data from both low COVID-19 and high COVID-19 countries show that the number of cardiovascular deaths in a society correlates with the number of respiratory deaths at the same time, further linking respiratory viruses to cardiovascular deaths. We are now more aware of public health obligations to prevent the spread of respiratory illnesses, in particular to protect the more vulnerable members the community. This hopefully will correspond with a change in the culture of sport to one where it is considered ‘the right thing to do’, to ‘stay home when sick’.
BMJ Open Sport & Exercise Medicine, Volume 7; https://doi.org/10.1136/bmjsem-2021-001164
Objectives Quantification of pericardial/myocardial involvement and risks of sudden cardiac arrest/sudden cardiac death (SCA/SCD) after SARS-CoV-2 infection in athletes who return to sports. Design Systematic review on post-SARS-CoV-2 infection pericardial/myocardial manifestations in athletes. Data sources Combinations of key terms in Medline, Embase and Scopus (through 2 June 2021). Eligibility criteria for selecting studies Inclusion: athletes, with cardiovascular magnetic resonance (CMR) or echocardiography after recovery from SARS-CoV-2 infection, including arrhythmia outcomes. Exclusion: study population ≥1 individual comorbidity and mean age 64 years. Quality assessment was performed using Joanna Briggs Institute Critical Appraisal tools checklists. Results In total, 12 manuscripts (1650 papers reviewed) comprising 3131 athletes (2198 college/student athletes, 879 professional athletes and 54 elite athletes) were included. The prevalence of myocarditis on echocardiography and/or CMR was 0%–15%, pericardial effusion 0%–58% and late gadolinium enhancement (LGE) 0%–46%. Weighted means of diagnosed myocarditis were 2.1% in college/student athletes and 0% in elite athletes. The prevalence of LGE was markedly lower in studies with high-quality assessment scores (3%–4%) versus low scores (38%–42%). A single study reported reversibility of myocardial involvement in 40.7%. No important arrhythmias were reported. Ten studies (n=4171) reporting postrecovery troponin T/I found no clear relationship with cardiac abnormalities. Summary/conclusion Athletes have an overall low risk of SARS-CoV-2 pericardial/myocardial involvement, arrhythmias and SCA/SCD. Rates of pericardial/myocardial abnormalities in athletes are highly variable and dependent on study quality. Troponin screenings seem unreliable to identify athletes at risk for myocardial involvement. Prospective athlete studies, with pre-SARS-CoV-2 imaging (CMR), including structured follow-up and arrhythmia monitoring, are urgently needed.
BMJ Open Sport & Exercise Medicine, Volume 7; https://doi.org/10.1136/bmjsem-2021-001149
Background The escalated competitive pressure and professionalisation of esports players could predispose them to mental health symptoms. We aimed to develop a model to explore the association between distress and anxiety/depression symptoms and potential associations between adaptive or maladaptive coping strategies, sleeping disturbance, alcohol consumption and eating habits in electronic football players. Methods The present exploratory cross-sectional study includes the Distress Screener, General Health Questionnaire, Brief Cope, Sleep Disturbance Domain of the Patient-Reported Outcomes Measurement Information System, Alcohol Use Disorders Identification Test Consumption and a set of questions regarding eating habits. A two-step robust maximum likelihood method of the Structural Equation Modelling approach was used. Results Both measurement model (χ2/df=1065.04 (637), p<0.001; Tucker-Lewis Index (TLI)=0.91, Comparative Fit Index (CFI)=0.92, standardised root mean residual (SRMR)=0.07 and root mean square error of approximation (RMSEA)=0.05; 95% CI 0.043 to 0.053) and hypothesised structural model (χ2/df=1131.98 (648); p<0.001; TLI=0.90, CFI=0.91, SRMR=0.07 and RMSEA=0.05; 95% CI 0.054 to 0.06) showed an adequate fit to the data. Stress was positively related with depression and anxiety symptoms. Only anxiety symptoms were linked with coping strategies. Maladaptive coping strategies were related to sleep disturbance, alcohol consumption and poor eating habits, whereas adaptive coping strategies were associated with less sleep disturbance, reduced alcohol consumption and better eating habits. Conclusion An integrative approach to help electronic football players when early signs of distress are present might help avoid other mental health symptoms that interfere with players’ well-being and overall health. Additionally, adequate coping strategies to manage anxiety symptoms due to distress may help counteract potential negative consequences for lifestyle habits in electronic football players.
BMJ Open Sport & Exercise Medicine, Volume 7; https://doi.org/10.1136/bmjsem-2021-001148
Objectives Little is known about the physical fitness of patients with complaints of hand, wrist, forearm and/or elbow and its possible determinants. Aims were to assess health-related physical fitness (HRPF) in these patients, to compare HRPF with reference values of healthy persons, and to explore whether HRPF was correlated with symptom severity, upper limb function (ULF) and physical activity (PA). Methods Cardiorespiratory fitness, handgrip strength and body composition, self-reported symptom severity, ULF and PA were assessed in adult outpatients with complaints of hand, wrist, forearm and/or elbow diagnosed as CANS. Results Measurements were completed in 25 subjects (8 males) aged 46.1±14.5 years, of which 44% had specific CANS and 56% had non-specific CANS. Peak oxygen consumption (VO2peak) of men was 2978±983 mL/min and of women was 1978±265 mL/min. Handgrip strength of men was 47.0±11.1 kgf and of women was 32.4±6.3 kgf. Body mass index (BMI) of men was 24.2±2.6 kg/m2 and of women was 27.4±6.1 kg/m2. VO2peak of the study sample was lower than that of healthy adults (−414±510 mL/min, p<0.001). Handgrip strength and BMI were similar to reference values. VO2peak was correlated with PA (r=0.58, p=0.004); BMI was correlated with disability (r=0.48, p=0.022). Other correlations between HRPF and symptom severity and ULF were non-significant. Conclusions Patients with CANS have lower cardiorespiratory fitness, but similar handgrip strength and body composition, compared with the healthy population. Cardiorespiratory fitness was correlated with PA and BMI was correlated with disability, no other correlations were observed with symptom severity and ULF.
BMJ Open Sport & Exercise Medicine, Volume 7; https://doi.org/10.1136/bmjsem-2021-001172
Objective To describe the injury epidemiology in professional football in South America and compare it with European professional football. Methods Data about football exposures and injury occurrences were registered in Six teams participating in Copa Libertadores in 2016. These teams’ exposure and injury data were compared with teams participating in the UEFA Elite Club Injury Study during the 2015/2016 and 2016/2017 seasons. Results A total of 271 injuries were reported in the South American cohort representing a training injury incidence of 3.2 (95% CI=2.7 to 3.7) injuries/1000 hours of training exposure and 20.9 (95% CI=17.3 to 25.1) injuries/1000 hours of match exposure. While no differences in muscle injury incidence were observed between South American and European teams, the ligament injury incidence in training among South American teams was significantly higher than European teams (0.6 vs 0.3, RR 1.87, 95% CI 1.21 to 2.87). In addition, a significantly higher proportion of all reported injuries among South American teams than European teams occurred in training. Conclusions A larger proportion of injuries occur in training in South American compared with European professional football. Specifically, ligament injuries in training were more frequent among South American teams.
BMJ Open Sport & Exercise Medicine, Volume 7; https://doi.org/10.1136/bmjsem-2021-001097
Background/Aim The clinical relevance of MRI knee abnormalities in athletes is unclear. This study aimed to determine the prevalence of MRI knee abnormalities in Australian Rules Football (ARF) players and describe their associations with pain, function, past and incident injury and surgery history. Methods 75 male players (mean age 21, range 16–30) from the Tasmanian State Football League were examined early in the playing season (baseline). History of knee injury/surgery and knee pain and function were assessed. Players underwent MRI scans of both knees at baseline. Clinical measurements and MRI scans were repeated at the end of the season, and incident knee injuries during the season were recorded. Results MRI knee abnormalities were common at baseline (67% bone marrow lesions, 16% meniscal tear/extrusion, 43% cartilage defects, 67% effusion synovitis). Meniscal tears/extrusion and synovial fluid volume were positively associated with knee symptoms, but these associations were small in magnitude and did not persist after further accounting for injury history. Players with a history of injury were at a greater risk of having meniscal tears/extrusion, effusion synovitis and greater synovial fluid volume. In contrast, players with a history of surgery were at a greater risk of having cartilage defects and meniscal tears/extrusion. Incident injuries were significantly associated with worsening symptoms, BML development and incident meniscal damage. Conclusions MRI abnormalities are common in ARF players, are linked to a previous knee injury and surgery history, as well as incident injury but do not dictate clinical symptomatology.
BMJ Open Sport & Exercise Medicine, Volume 7; https://doi.org/10.1136/bmjsem-2021-001117
Running injuries impact the health gains achieved through running and are linked to drop-out from this otherwise healthy activity. The need for effective prevention is apparent, however, implementation of preventive measures implies a change in runners’ behaviour. This exploratory qualitative study aimed to explore Dutch recreational runners’ perception on injuries, injury occurrence and prevention. An interpretative paradigm underpins this study. We conducted 12 individual semistructured interviews with male (n=6) and female runners (n=6). Through a constant comparative data analysis, we developed a conceptual model to illustrate the final product of the analysis and represent the main themes’ connection. We present a framework that describes the pathway from load to injury and the self-regulatory process controlling this pathway. Runners mentioned that pain is not necessarily an injury, and they usually continue running. Once complaints become unmanageable and limit the runner’s ability to participate, an injury was perceived. Based on our outcomes, we recommend that preventive strategies focus on the self-regulation by which runners manage their complaints and injuries—providing information, advice and programmes that support the runner to make well-informed, effective decisions.