When most of us hear the words “sports medicine,” we likely get an image of a big time football or soccer star receiving some sort of specialized treatment to keep them on their playing field of choice.
However, the biggest public misconception about sports medicine is that it is limited to high-performance athletes. Even if your personal playing fields are located within the various communities adjacent to Collier Boulevard or on Marco Island, you can—and should—have the same “special treatment” of an Olympic athlete.
Sure, Olympians may compete for gold medals, but high school athletes, weightlifters, walkers, runners and golfers want to be at their best, too.
Understandably, many patients don’t know the difference between an orthopedist specializing in “sports medicine” as opposed to an orthopedic doctor. Sports medicine physicians undergo an additional year of fellowship training. During this time, they learn advanced arthroscopic surgical procedures and how to provide individualized care for athletes—professional and otherwise.
Special consideration is also given to the timing of the injury with regards to the season and the patient’s career. For example: An athlete who was injured at the very beginning of the football season of their senior year in high school may wish to undergo a more aggressive return-to-play treatment plan knowing their career will be over at the end of the season.
However, if your personal athletic goals require that you be in tip-top shape, take a look at the considerable skill set of Physicians Regional Medical Group’s Bryan Hanypsiak, M.D. Dr. Hanypsiak is board certified in orthopedic surgery, and did his fellowship in sports medicine at the Cleveland Clinic in Ohio.
When asked what first prompted him to specialize in sports medicine and orthopedics, Dr. Hanypsiak responded in a very personal way: “My love of sports and my own knee injuries. My training has taken me to the NFL, NHL, NBA and MLB as a physician, and provided me with the training to help others return to their sports. By combining the two things I love most— orthopedic surgery and sports—my job doesn’t ever feel like work.”
While sports medicine
is defined as the treatment of soft-tissue injuries that occur while participating in either recreational or professional sports, Dr. Hanypsiak’s view is more global in nature: “Sports medicine is the opportunity to keep patients enjoying life and doing the things they love. I don’t believe in telling the patient that they can’t do an activity anymore because of orthopedic conditions. I focus on discovering new and creative ways for them to keep enjoying their favorite sports and activities.”
To Dr. Hanypsiak, an athlete is defined as anyone who participates in a sport. “Athletes come in all shapes and sizes,” he says. “As a sports medicine doctor, it’s my job to individualized their care to provide them the outcomes they are looking for.”
In terms of age, lifestyle and interests, Dr. Hanypsiak’s patients run the gamut. He sees younger athletes who have acute sports injuries such as shoulder dislocations, ACL and meniscal tears, and hip labral injuries. His older patients often have degenerative injuries such as rotator cuff tears and arthritis.
While Dr. Hanypsiak enjoys all types of patients, he likes treating athletes who have an acute injury the most. “I tore my ACLs trying to make the Olympic team in 1996. I understand how quickly you can go from being in peak physical condition to being unable to walk,” he recalls. “Helping highly-motivated athletes return to the sports they love at the highest level possible for them is very rewarding.”
And his best advice for those who wish to remain “athletic” regardless of their age? “Everything in moderation. I see most injuries occur with sudden start of intense physical activity without building up a baseline.”
Because Dr. Hanypsiak suffered from many of these injuries during his sporting career, he understands what it is like to walk in his patient’s shoes. “I treat them the way I would want to be treated. I listen carefully to the patient’s goals and do my best to help them achieve them.”
What more could you ask for?
For more information on Dr. Bryan Hanypsiak, or to schedule an appointment, please call 239-348-4221.