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Frequently Asked Question

How do you treat “runner's knee”?

Runner's knee is characterized by dull pain around the patella. It can be caused by a structural defect or walking and running habits that cause it. A conservative therapeutic program should incorporate hip abductor, external rotator, and quadriceps strength, closed-chain exercises like squats and balance training. More aggressive treatment may require gait analysis (biomechanics) and custom orthotics.

Can I find a Doctor for Sports Injury who takes my insurance?

First find the Sports Injury Doctor that best fits your needs, review their experience, and determine that the location is convenient for you. Then, from that page, upload your insurance information. The Doctor’s office will contact you to verify whether your plan is accepted.

Would I have to pay more if I use my out of network benefits?

Many plans allow for access to out of network providers for the same out of pocket cost as in network providers.

What is the difference between a Sports Medicine Doctor and an Orthopedic Surgeon?

Sports Medicine physicians are trained in the complete healthcare of athletes. This includes the non-musculoskeletal aspects of sports health such as concussions, exercise-induced asthma, overtraining and fatigue, return to play issues, nutrition, training and conditioning. Both Sports Medicine Doctors and Orthopedic surgeons are trained in the care of musculoskeletal problems.

Do Chiropractors do Sports Medicine treatments?

Ultrasound provides very detailed images that allow a Sports Medicine Doctor to see if a body part is normal, or swollen, thickened, torn, or stretched with extra blood flow in or around the area. For some common sports related injuries diagnostic ultrasound has replaced other forms of advanced imaging, such as MRI. It provides the added advantage of allowing the physician to see body parts in motion. Ultrasound can be used to diagnose injuries to bones, joints muscles, tendons, ligaments and even nerves.

Is acupuncture a Sports Medicine treatment?

Chinese medicine has always been closely linked with sports, martial arts, and healing. Sports acupuncture is used to speed healing, relieve pain, and increase muscle strength and stamina. In some studies acupuncture produced an increase in physical performance capacity and better regulation of heart rate and blood pressure compared to placebo acupuncture and control. Runners treated with acupuncture showed statistically significant improvement. Treating sports conditions with medications can be limited by significant medication side-effects, making acupuncture a preferable alternative.

Is there any danger to my heart from sports or exercise?

In the absence of heart disease, inflammation or rhythm disorders, exercise is generally healthy for your heart. Extreme exercise and endurance events can lead to heart damage. Chest pain, dizziness, and shortness of breath during exercise means you should back off immediately and consult with your doctor.

Can a Sports Medicine Doctor provide advice on biomechanics for running or biking?

Biomechanics is a focus of Sports Medicine research. The primary goal of sports biomechanics is to improve athletic performance by identifying and applying optimal technique, preventing injury and speeding recovery. Biomechanics in sports incorporates a detailed analysis of movement. By studying how the human body naturally wants to move recommendations can be made that remove stress and pressure on the bones, joints, muscles and ligaments.

How is multi-ligament knee injury treated?

These types of injuries are most commonly seen in higher level skiing and football athletes. A multi-ligament knee injury will often require serial surgeries for repair and then reconstruction. You should seek out an Orthopedic Surgeon who specializes in Sports Medicine with a focus on acute and complex knee injuries if you have this type of injury.

Do Sports Medicine Doctors do arthroscopy?

Arthroscopy is a common surgical technique for sports injuries. It is a minimally invasive procedure that uses a camera, fiber optic light and a magnifying lens to allow the surgeon to get a detailed view of the injury and repair it. Common injuries that can be treated using arthroscopy alone include tendon, ligament, and cartilage tears, rotator cuff tears, and inflamed joints. The knees, elbows, shoulders, ankles, hips, and wrists are most often treated with this method.

What is the treatment for tennis elbow?

There are both non-surgical and surgical techniques to treat tennis elbow. Conservative treatment may include: reduced activity, corticosteroid injections, extracorporeal shock wave therapy, icing, anti-inflammatory medication, range of motion exercises and physical therapy. If conservative methods do not provide relief, or if the injury stems from torn ligaments and tendons, surgery may be indicated. Most tennis elbow surgery will be arthroscopic. However, if the injury is complex, and there is serious tissue damage, or the tendon tear is large, open surgery may be required.

Should I have surgery for an Achilles rupture?

Treatment for a ruptured Achilles tendon depends on the age of the patient, their activity level and the severity of the injury. While both surgical and non-surgical treatments have shown fairly equal effectiveness, young athletes tend to choose surgery, whereas older patients tend to opt for non-surgical treatment. Non-surgical repair avoids the risks of surgery, but increases the chances of re-rupture.

What does medical clearance for my sports injury surgery consist of?

Your Sports Medicine surgeon may request a medical evaluation by your Primary Care Physician before performing your surgery. A medical clearance is essentially authorization from an evaluating doctor that a patient is cleared, or deemed healthy enough, for a proposed surgery.

What is a pre op examination for sports injury surgery?

A preoperative physical examination is essentially the same thing as getting medical clearance. It is performed at the request of the Sports Medicine surgeon to ensure that a patient is healthy enough to safely undergo anesthesia and surgery. This evaluation includes a physical examination, cardiac evaluation, lung function assessment, and appropriate laboratory tests.

Why do I need medical clearance for my sports injury surgery?

The purpose of medical clearance is to assess your personal risk related to undergoing a surgical procedure. If you have comorbidities your surgeon may want another doctor familiar with your medical history to offer perspective on whether the procedure is safe for you and ways to reduce risk.

Why do I need blood and urine tests before my sports injury surgery?

Your surgeon may require routine laboratory tests before your procedure to identify potential problems that might complicate surgery if not detected and treated in advance. A blood test will show if you have a blood-clotting problem and may be at risk of too much bleeding during surgery.  Urinalysis may be used to detect urinary tract infections, renal diseases and poorly controlled diabetes.

Who do I see to get medical clearance for my sports injury surgery?

Your Primary Care Physician is the Doctor who manages your medical care. He/she will provide the appropriate information.

How long is a medical clearance for a sports injury surgery valid?

A patient's medical history, physical exam and labs are valid for 30 days. EKG's that are normal are valid for 90 days. These parameters may vary if the patient has comorbidities.

Why is my surgeon recommending a surgery center instead of a hospital?

Most sports injury surgeries do not require an overnight stay. If your health, age and surgical procedure do not require a hospital stay after surgery, an accredited ambulatory surgery center may offer several advantages, including convenience, reduced cost and reduced potential for developing infection.

Can a Sports Medicine Doctor treat bone loss or bone density?

A Sports Medicine Doctor who has completed additional training focused on bone health, injury or condition may have the expertise to assess, diagnose and treat bone density issues. Physical and occupational therapy may be part of the treatment plan.

How does regenerative medicine help a sports injury?

Research has found that it is possible to use platelet-rich plasma (PRP) and adult stem cells to heal and even regenerate lost, damaged, or aging tissue. Regenerative therapy is the process of taking the body’s own healing stem cells and injecting them into an area of the body that has been injured. Stem cell injections, platelet-rich plasma (PRP), and prolotherapy are examples of regenerative medicine treatments available to treat sports injuries. However, prolotherapy treatments are not considered regenerative therapy unless they include platelet-rich plasma (PRP) and/or stem cells.

What is stem cell therapy?

Stem cells are the cells that develop into blood, brain, bones, and all of the body’s organs. They have the potential to repair, restore, replace, and regenerate cells. Stem cell therapy involves introducing stem cells into patients to replace damaged tissues. The most common sources of stems cells are: bone marrow, adipose tissue (fat) umbilical cord blood, amniotic fluid and allografts (donated tissue)

What is better for my knees, stem cells from fat or from bone marrow?

Adipose (fat) tissue provides the largest volume of adult stem cells and more importantly it provides a large volume of additional growth factors. Research studies have shown that every significant measurement comparing bone marrow to adipose tissue for stem cell harvesting demonstrated that adipose derived stem cells provided better cell content and superior ability to differentiate into cartilage than bone marrow.

What is MACI cartilage regeneration?

MACI stands for "matrix-induced autologous chondrocyte". Chondrocytes are the only cells found in healthy cartilage. MACI is a 2 part procedure in which cartilage is removed from the patient and sent to a lab to grow. Then, when it is ready a surgeon cuts it to fit the defect and glues it to the patient. Both procedures require some recovery, the second one being more extensive.

How is Kinesio tape used for sports injuries?

It is thought that Kinesio tape can provide support, lessen pain, reduce swelling, improve circulation, re-educate muscles, support weak zones and improve performance. While it is not recommended for long term benefits, it can have short term benefits if applied correctly by a trained sports therapy professional. If the athlete has severe or lingering pain after activity a healthcare professional should be seen to identify the underlying problem that is causing the symptom and to initiate appropriate treatment.

Can I specify a male or a female Sports Injury Doctor?

PreferredMD’s online service allows you to filter your results for Sports Injury Doctors by gender. That way, you’ll only see Doctors who match your preferences.

Can I schedule a Sports Injury consultation with a Doctor who sees patients after hours?

PreferredMD’s online service allows you to filter for Sports Injury Doctors with availability after 5 p.m. Just choose the special hours filter at the top of our search page.

Can I schedule a video visit online with a Sports Injury Doctor?

PreferredMD’s online service uses a purple video icon on the profiles of Sports Injury Doctors who offer online video visits. You can filter your search results to show only Sports Injury Doctors who offer video consultations.

Are video visits with a Sports Injury Doctor covered by my insurance?

Most insurers provide coverage for video visits at the same rate as in-person visits. You can search on PreferredMD specifically for Sports Injury Doctors who accept your insurance for video visits. Select your carrier and plan from the drop-down menu at the top of the page to verify. If that information is not available, we recommend you check with your insurance carrier directly to confirm your coverage and out of pocket costs for video visits.

Can I find a Sports Injury Doctor who sees patients in the morning or evening?

PreferredMD’s online service allows you to search specifically for a Sports Injury Doctor who has appointments available before 10:00 am, or after 5:00 pm. Just choose the special hours filter at the top of our search page.

Can I find a Sports Injury Doctor who sees patients during the weekend?

PreferredMD’s online service allows you to see real-time availability for Sports Injury Doctors that offer appointments on Saturdays and Sundays. Just choose the special hours filter at the top of our search page.

Can I make a same-day appointment with a Doctor for Sports Injury?

PreferredMD patients can often get same day appointments; on average within 24 hours. You can search for real-time availability of Sports Injury Consultations in your area, with Doctors who accept your insurance and make an appointment online.

Can I book an appointment online with Preferred MD for a Sports Injury Doctor?

Now that you’re here, you can use PreferredMD’s free online service to find Sports Injury Consultations and book appointments instantly. You can easily search for a Sports Injury Doctor in your desired location and specify your insurance plan. Based on that information, you’ll see a list of Doctors who meet your search criteria, accept your insurance, and their available appointment slots.

How can I find a top-rated Sports Injury Doctor?

You can use PreferredMD’s online service to find Sports Injury Doctors who are highly rated by real patients. Every time a patient completes an appointment booked on PreferredMD, they are invited to review their experience. All ratings are based on verified reviews submitted by real patients. Each review must comply with PreferredMD’s guidelines.

Sports (and Exercise) Medicine (SEM)

In some countries Sports and Exercise Medicine is identified as a specialized medical discipline with defined training and standards of accreditation similar to other medical specialties. In other countries it is considered a special interest area, but not a specialized school and practice of medicine. Sports Medicine (or Sports and Exercise medicine SEM) is regarded differently on a regional basis.

Sports and Exercise Medicine emerged as a distinct field of health care in the late 20th century in European countries: Switzerland in 1922, followed by Germany in 1924, and then France and Italy in 1929. Italy was the first country to establish Sports and Exercise Medicine as a specialty in 1958.

Sports Medicine is primarily focused on the prevention and treatment of injuries related to sports and exercise, as well as health maintenance through physical activity. Sports Medicine doctors and paramedical providers are experienced with managing physical disability conditions relating to physically demanding work, treating a variety of muscular and orthopedic conditions. 

A common childhood and young adult condition treated by Sports Medicine doctors is exercise induced asthma. Prescribed physical activity and prophylactic measures, tailored by a Sports Medicine specialist can prevent the onset and alleviate its symptoms. Adults with exercise induced asthma  can manage their symptoms with a similar approach.

Sports Medicine (SEM) Team members can include:

  • Orthopedic surgeons
  • Certified athletic trainers
  • Sports physical therapists
  • Physical medicine and rehabilitation specialists
  • Podiatrists
  • Registered dieticians 
  • Sports psychologists

In the United States Sports Medicine is not considered a medical specialty. Rather, it implies additional training focused on the medical aspects of sports and exercise, after certification in a recognized specialty has first been achieved. 

Since 1994 in the US, Sports Medicine is considered a subspecialty of:

  • Emergency Medicine
  • Family Practice
  • Orthopedics
  • Pediatrics
  • Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation

A rigorous process is required to distinguish certified Sports Medicine Physicians from other physicians without specialized training. The requirements are:

  • Board Certification in Emergency Medicine, Family Medicine, Internal Medicine, Pediatrics or Physical Medicine/Rehabilitation.
  • One to two years of additional fellowship training in Sports Medicine.
  • Successful passage of a national Sports Medicine certification examination, possession of a Certificate of Added Qualification in Sports Medicine.
  • Participation in continuing medical education (CME) activities and recertification via re-examination every 10 years. 
  • Leadership of a Sports Medicine team, which also may include multiple specialty physicians and paramedical providers.



US Sport Medicine associations:

  • American Musculoskeletal Society for Sports Medicine
  • American Orthopaedic Society for Sports Medicine
  • Physiatric Association of Spine, Sports and Occupational Rehabilitation


Symptoms/Conditions treated

ACL Tear

Ankle sprains

Cartilage injuries


Degenerative Disease

Eating disorders

Exercise Induced Asthma


Hand and wrist injuries

Heat illness

Knee, ankle, foot and shoulder injuries

Ligament Sprain and Tear

Nerve Entrapment


Overuse Syndrome

Rotator Cuff Tear


Stress Fractures


Procedures/Treatment modalities

Non-Surgical Injury Treatment

Lifestyle Counsel


Pain Management


PRP Treatment


“Return to Play” decisions

Stem Cell Treatment

Weight Loss


PreferredMD’s elite New York City Sports and Exercise Doctors

PreferredMD offers our patients much more than the convenience of booking medical appointments online. Our concierge service connects you to a network of select practitioners and facilities in the New York metropolitan area that generally do not participate in ‘fee for referral’ services.  These highly sought surgeons and resources have long term relationships with PreferredMD based on their exceptional capabilities and skills.  PreferredMD patients get direct, immediate and informed access to this exclusive network of providers as well as concierge class scheduling and oversight of their entire medical and procedural experience. 


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