Here at the Stevens Point Orthopedics, our athletic trainers are well rounded! They serve primarily in the role as a physician extender and provide outreach sports medicine coverage for Pacelli High School. Their specialized training allows for them to assist with evaluating orthopedic injuries, educating patients, evaluating patients who have sustained a concussion and fitting braces.
As a physician extender, athletic trainers provide a lot of services. In our clinic, they typically start an appointment to find out why the patient is coming to see the doctor and gain an understanding of the patient’s concerns. They may check how well the injured body part moves, test muscle strength, and perform special tests to get an idea of what type of injury the patient may have. Then our orthopedic surgeon comes in with follow up questions and performs additional testing before devolving a plan of care with each patient.
Once the doctor leaves the room the athletic trainer-physician extender spends extra time with the patient providing education and answering questions about the patient’s condition. This may include discussing upcoming surgery or diagnostic testing. They typically do some of the back-end work to get all information discussed during the patient’s appointment into their computerized medical record. Allowing our doctors quality time with their patients!
At Stevens Point Orthopedics, our athletic trainers specialize in the diagnosis and management of athletes who have sustained a concussion. Our athletic trainers are able to evaluate an athlete right after a possible head injury has occurred, by asking them specific questions to test memory and their thought processes. They use baseline and post-injury testing on a computerized system called ImPACT, to aid in the management of concussions. This is the same system that is used in collegiate sports, military and many professional sporting associations, including the NFL, NHL, and MLB. Our athletic trainers each have specific specialized training in order to appropriately interpret ImPACT test results. These results, as well as their clinical evaluation, help them to safely return athletes back to their sport.
Our athletic training staff also has dedicated training in brace fitting and casting. They work with the doctors to help find the right type of brace for each specific patient. This helps our patients get a brace tailored to their needs orthopedically AND for their lifestyle, whether it be playing competitive sports or simply walking around the block.
Hopefully, you won’t need our athletic training services but if you do, our staff is well prepared to provide a wide range of services to meet your orthopedic and sports medicine needs.