Man with backache

Skiing Injuries and How We Successfully Treat Them

Even during the pandemic, intrepid skiers still stake out places to enjoy their chosen sport. Unsurprisingly, some of them suffer injuries. If you are a Long Islander who has gone skiing and suffered a musculoskeletal or spinal injury, Long Island Spine Rehabilitation Medicine is here to help you recover through minimally invasive therapies and procedures.

The Most Common Ski Injuries

While it is possible to injure almost any part of your body while skiing, the following are the skiing injuries we treat most commonly:

Knee Injuries

Knee injuries, especially ACL (anterior cruciate ligament) and MCL (medial collateral ligament) tears are relatively frequent ski accident injuries. Both of these ligaments join bones that stabilize the knee joints. Therefore, when either ligament tears, the affected bones slide out of position, causing the knee joint to become unstable and unable to support the weight. Because ACL and MCL tears can be caused by sudden stops, incorrect landing from jumps, or sudden changes in direction, they can occur during ski accidents.

Fractured Wrists

Since we instinctively put out our hands for protection when we fall, broken wrists are also common skiing injuries. If our outstretched hand takes the brunt of the impact, wrist bones can fracture or tendons or ligaments can stretch beyond their limits or tear, resulting in strains or sprains of the wrist. Wearing wrist braces can help prevent these skiing injuries.

Skier’s Thumb

When a skier falls while holding a ski pole, the pole can catch on the ground and bend the thumb too outward. This motion can sprain or rupture the tendon; either is a painful injury.

Broken Legs

As we’ve seen in all the cartoons of skiers on crutches with casts on their legs, a skier who has a bad fall or collides with another skier or a tree may fracture a leg. The length of time such a skiing injury takes to heal will depend on the nature of the break and the age of the skier.

Shoulder Dislocations

Shoulder dislocations occur when the humerus, the large bone of the upper arm, moves out of its socket. This skiing injury can happen during a bad fall on the shoulder or if the skier falls in such a way that she or he is hanging by one arm.

Ankle or Foot Sprains or Fractures

Ankles or feet can easily be injured if skis do not release when twisted during a skiing accident. If ligaments are pulled beyond their limits, a sprain results. If a bone is directly impacted, a fracture occurs.

Spinal Injuries

Skiing injuries that affect the spine can be very serious. Any neck or back pain requires urgent attention because a dislocation or fracture of a vertebrae can compress or even sever the spinal cord; the latter may result in partial or complete paralysis. It is also possible to suffer a lesser spinal injury while skiing, like a sprain or strain of the neck or back, a herniated vertebral disc, or whiplash.

Nonsurgical Treatments We Offer for Skiing Injuries

At Long Island Spine Rehabilitation Medicine, our physiatrists offer a wide range of treatment options for skiing injuries. Our approach is holistic so we combine traditional and complementary therapeutic treatments, including:

  • Customized physical therapy to restore strength, increase flexibility and range of motion
  • Platelet-Rich Plasma (PRP) injections to decrease pain and speed healing
  • Corticosteroid/analgesic injections to relieve pain and inflammation at the site
  • PEMF (Pulsed Electromagnetic Field) technology to increase blood flow to the cells 
  • Acupuncture to relieve pain and inflammation, and to release endorphins
  • Viscosupplementation (injections of hyaluronic acid) to lubricate the knee joint

Contact Our Highly Skilled Doctors Today

If you’ve been injured while skiing, our team of doctors is available to help you get back on the slopes as quickly as possible. We believe that healing is a collaborative process between doctor and patient so we will take your concerns and preferences under careful consideration before tailoring a treatment program just for you. Contact our team today.