Implications of rheumatology in sports medicine

Authors: Blanca Szolga ¹, Teodora Alexescu ²

Affiliation: 1 Diagnostic and Treatment Center Cluj-Napoca

                        2 ”Iuliu Hațieganu” University of Medicine and Pharmacy, Cluj-Napoca, 4th Medical Clinic


Rheumatology is the branch of medicine that studies, besides autoimmune diseases, musculoskeletal pathology as well. These conditions may occur as a consequence of practicing sports or other recreational activities which involve physical over­load.

The ability of rheumatologists to recognize, investigate and treat musculoskeletal conditions makes rheumatology a dis­cipline with important applications in sports medicine. Musculoskeletal ultrasound, considered to be “the rheumatologist’s stethoscope”, has many uses in sports medicine.

The most frequent rheumatologic conditions in sports medicine are periarticular conditions of the shoulder, elbow, hip, knee and leg, as well as arthrosis. These include afflictions of the tendons, ligaments, bursae, joint capsule, cartilages, fasciae, muscles and peripheral nerves.

In most cases the diagnosis is clinical (+/- by ultrasound) and the treatment is conservative: pain control and rehabilitation treatment; sometimes periarticular infiltrations or surgical interventions are also required.

Most musculoskeletal conditions linked to physical overload can be prevented by observance of rest intervals, the use of correct training techniques, as well as the use of adequate sports equipment.

Keywords: rheumatology changes, athletes, sports medicine.

Implications of rheumatology in sports medicine