LAKE CHARLES, LA (KPLC) -
In the United States, football remains at the top of the list as one of the most popular and intense sports. This love mixed with intensity, though, can come with a major drawback: injuries.
If not treated early on and effectively, injuries can be career-ending. One clinic in Southwest Louisiana, is working to get injured high school football players back in the game.
At Hamilton Christian Academy, 17-year-old quarterback Cameron Meyer holds a lot of responsibility on the football field. Cameron is hoping his passing and running game will be enough to push him on to the next level after high school, but an injury two weeks ago that grounded him has put the intensity of the sport in perspective. "It was a quarterback draw," he says, "and I had run probably 30 yards and a guy tackled me from behind and he just twisted me wrong. I tried playing on it and the next play I fumbled."
Like many athletes, Cameron tried to play through the pain - but quickly learned that it just wasn't happening! His team's athletic trainer knew that Cameron had suffered a high ankle sprain. While Cameron was told to rest and ice his ankle that night, the following morning he hobbled into the Saturday Sports Injury Clinic at Lake Charles Memorial Hospital.
Dr. David Drez with LCMH Sports Medicine explains, "In these clinics, we're able to evaluate the injury and to x-ray the patient and do whatever is necessary to try to get them back playing as soon as possible." For the past 20 years, Dr. Drez and his sports medicine pros have been a one-stop shop for treating injured athletes. "In any injury, the sooner you get an accurate diagnosis and start the appropriate treatment, then the recovery is much faster," he says.
While Cameron knew he had a high ankle sprain, a complete set of x-rays was given to ensure that there was no injury to the bone or surrounding ligaments. Cameron was told that elevation, ice and rest would be the best treatment for the first couple of days after the injury. "They also told me once I started practicing again to tape it right and just to watch it during practice and not try to push it," says Cameron.
Cameron has also completed one week of physical therapy and is now suiting up again!
*Dr. Drez's sports medicine team at LCMH also includes Dr. Brett Cascio, who has worked with the Colorado Rockies and Denver Broncos. Dr. Scott Hofer is also one of the sports medicine experts. He is one of only a few hundred orthopedists nationwide to receive a subspecialty certification in sports medicine.
**Clinics are every Saturday during football season beginning at 8:00 A.M. No appointments are required. You can just show up at Orthopedic Specialists, adjacent to Memorial Hospital.