Concussion

Concussion

The primary focus of the initial on-pitch assessment of a player who has sustained a head trauma during training or match play is to screen the player for concussion or a more severe head or cervical spine injury. Once this has been done, and the assessment suggests that the player has sustained a concussion, he/she [...]
Neurology

Neurology

Exercise and physical activity appears to have profound effects on the brain. Neuroimaging techniques (like functional MRI) have shown that exercise leads to changes in brain structure and function. It has been shown that physical activity can be an effective treatment for depression, improve memory and be beneficial for both the treatment and prevention of [...]
Head and Neck

Head and Neck

Across all sports, special attention must be given to head and neck injuries. This is because in rare cases, these injuries are potentially serious and can lead to a prolonged course of treatment or have catastrophic consequences. Football is generally not considered to be a high-risk sport. In international championships (1998 to 2012), approximately 13% [...]
Mental Health

Mental Health

The WHO defines mental health as “a state of well-being in which every individual realises his or her own potential, can cope with the normal stresses of life, can work productively and fruitfully, and is able to make a contribution to her or his community”. Rather than being viewed as a “disorder”, mental health should [...]
Infectious diseases

Infectious diseases

Playing football, and physical activity in general, has an effect on a player’s immune status. This effect is directly related to the amount and intensity of training. This must be considered when developing a team’s training programme. Too much load may compromise immunity and lead to illness. There are a variety of infectious diseases which [...]
Football for Health

Football for Health

Physical inactivity is a very significant public health problem. As a society, we are becoming increasingly sedentary and more obese. This has obvious health implications. Physical activity is an important health intervention. Playing football for 45-60 minutes two or three times a week has been shown to markedly improve cardiovascular and musculoskeletal function. It is [...]
Respiratory

Respiratory

It is well established that various medical conditions and illnesses, especially respiratory tract symptoms, affect elite athletes while they are travelling to and competing in international competitions. 1-3 These medical conditions most commonly affect the ear, nose and throat, respiratory tract, dermatological system, central nervous system and gastrointestinal system. 1-4 Elite athletes are not immune [...]
Diabetes

Diabetes

Diabetes mellitus is a chronic endocrine disorder characterised by hyperglycaemia resulting from either defects in insulin secretion, insulin action, or both. 1 Regular physical activity and participation in team sports from a young age have been associated with reduced macrovascular complications in type-1 diabetes and a delay in the onset of type-2 diabetes. 2 Athletes [...]
Cardiology

Cardiology

While sports participation, including football, is a safe and enjoyable activity for the vast majority of individuals it can be potentially harmful for some people. There are a number of cardiac conditions that can predispose people to sudden cardiac arrest (SCA) and sudden cardiac death (SCD). These are frequently asymptomatic and as a result not [...]
Rheumatology

Rheumatology

The majority of athletes presenting to a sports medicine clinic have a musculoskeletal condition. While this is typically related to trauma, a reasonable percentage of these patients have pain that is related to either an inflammatory condition or another medical problem. It is not uncommon for patients to relate their pain to an injury. It [...]