Context: Although elite adolescent female soccer athletes have unique injury risk factors and management challenges, limited epidemiological data exist for this population. Objective: To describe lower-body injury patterns and to determine whether a screening hip physical examination is predictive of future injuries in elite adolescent female soccer athletes. Design: Prospective cohort study. Setting: One US premier soccer club. Participants: One hundred seventy-seven female soccer athletes aged 10–18 years (mean [SD] 14.6 [1.8] y) completed a demographic questionnaire and screening hip physical examination that included range of motion and provocative tests. Interventions: At least 5 years after baseline screening, athletes completed an electronic follow-up injury survey. Injury was defined as pain that interfered with sporting activity. Main Outcome Measures: In addition to descriptive analyses of athletes’ injury profiles, associations between players’ baseline demographics and subsequent injury profiles were evaluated using chi-square tests, and potential predictors of injury based on players’ baseline hip examinations were evaluated using multivariable logistic regression. Results: Ninety-four of 177 athletes (53%) were contacted for follow-up, and 88/94 (93.6%) completed the survey. With mean follow-up of 91.9 (9.3) months (range 66–108 mo), 42/88 (47.7%) reported sustaining a new lower-body injury. The low back was the most common injury region (16/42, 38.1%). Almost half of all injured athletes (20/42, 47.6%) sustained overuse injuries, and 16/42 (38.1%) had an incomplete recovery. Higher body mass index and reaching menarche were associated with sustaining an injury (P = .03 and .04, respectively). Athletes’ baseline hip examinations were not predictive of their subsequent rate of lower-body, lumbopelvic, overuse, or incomplete recovery injury (all P > .05). Conclusions: Lower-body injuries were common in elite adolescent female soccer athletes, with over one third of injured athletes reporting permanent negative impact of the injury on their playing ability. Baseline hip physical examinations were not associated with future injury rate.
Abby L. Cheng, John A. Merlo, Devyani Hunt, Ted Yemm, Robert H. Brophy and Heidi Prather
Jonathon R. Staples, Kevin A. Schafer, Matthew V. Smith, John Motley, Mark Halstead, Andrew Blackman, Amanda Haas, Karen Steger-May, Matthew J. Matava, Rick W. Wright and Robert H. Brophy
Context: Patients with anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) tears are likely to have deficient dynamic postural stability compared with healthy sex- and age-matched controls. Objectives: To test the hypothesis that patients undergoing ACL reconstruction have decreased dynamic postural stability compared with matched healthy controls. Design: Prospective case-control study. Setting: Orthopedic sports medicine and physical therapy clinics. Patients or Other Participants: Patients aged 20 years and younger with an ACL tear scheduled for reconstruction were enrolled prospectively. Controls were recruited from local high schools and colleges via flyers. Interventions: Patients underwent double-stance dynamic postural stability testing prior to surgery, recording time to failure and dynamic motion analysis (DMA) scores. Patients were then matched with healthy controls. Main Outcome Measures: Demographics, time to failure, and DMA scores were compared between groups. Results: A total of 19 females and 12 males with ACL tears were matched with controls. Individuals with ACL tears were more active (Marx activity score: 15.7 [1.0] vs 10.8 [4.9], P < .001); had shorter times until test failure (84.4 [15.8] vs 99.5 [14.5] s, P < .001); and had higher (worse) DMA scores (627  vs 481 , P < .001), indicating less dynamic postural stability. Six patients with ACL deficiency (1 male and 5 females) demonstrated lower (better) DMA scores than their controls, and another 7 (4 males and 3 females) were within 20% of controls. Conclusions: Patients undergoing ACL reconstruction had worse global dynamic postural stability compared with well-matched controls. This may represent the effect of the ACL injury or preexisting deficits that contributed to the injury itself. These differences should be studied further to evaluate their relevance to ACL injury risk, rehabilitation, and return to play.