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Sports & exercise medicine

See an expert and get an accurate diagnosis to speed your recovery

Whether you’re a high-level competitor or you enjoy the occasional recreational hobby, we are all susceptible to injury from time to time.

If you’ve sustained an injury, you’ll want fast-acting pain relief, a clear route to recovery, and advice on whether or not you can safely continue to train. Perhaps you’ve received a diagnosis of a long-term condition, and need guidance on the types of exercise that will help reduce your pain and keep you fit and healthy. Only a specialist Sports & Exercise Medicine professional can provide reliable, effective help, making the BMI Bath Clinic your premier choice for recovery in the South West.

Sports and Exercise Medicine as a specialty tends to comprise three main areas:

  • Treating injuries acquired during sport or exercise
  • Treating illness and chronic conditions with exercise
  • Improving your health through exercise

One area seen by our specialists focuses on Musculoskeletal Medicine, and anything to do with the soft tissues, i.e. muscles, tendons, and ligaments. Although these issues often aren’t necessarily provoked by sport, using the tried and tested ways of getting sports people back to their activities works just as well in returning anyone to their daily routine. These musculoskeletal issues typically take one of two forms:

  • Acute injuries – e.g. sprained ankle
  • Chronic (long-term) issues – e.g. groin pain, something not associated with a specific injury and yet to be diagnosed

Our consultant sports physicians are trained in the non-surgical treatments of soft tissue injuries, with a wide array of measures available to help in your recovery, whether it be reducing pain, strengthening a joint, or increasing your mobility. Accredited on the General Medical Council Specialist Register, our sports physicians have certified excellence, ensuring you the very best care. Beyond this, one of our primary aims is to understand how or why you may have sustained these injuries, advising you on what you can do to prevent them in future.

For example, if you pull a hamstring, it heals, and then you promptly pull it again, clearly there is an underlying issue to address. Some of the possible explanations include:

  • Muscle imbalance
  • Abnormal limb alignment
  • Incorrect or poor technique
  • Training frequency
  • Incorrect footwear
  • Faulty or improper training equipment
  • Inflammatory arthritis or degenerative joint disease

By investigating the causes, not only can we help restore you to good health, we can also help prevent further injury in the future.

If you’re dealing with an injury, but want to stay active, or need to keep competing at a high level, you’ll want to know what kind of exercise may be useful during your rehabilitation. Exercise Medicine answers all of your questions, highlighting beneficial exercises based on your specific condition and diagnosis.

Many of the patients we see for Exercise Medicine have existing conditions or illnesses, seeking advice on appropriate exercises.

For example, if you are currently undergoing cancer treatment, you may be wondering what sort of exercise you can safely carry out. Similarly, if you’re an asthma sufferer, you may question how you can sensibly stay active.

By spending time with you and assessing your health and fitness level, your consultant can tailor advice and treatment to your specific needs, leading to the most efficient recovery possible, while keeping you appropriately active.

When you’re injured and unable to take part in the sports or exercise you love, you won’t want to wait to get started on your rehabilitation. If you’re used to competing at a national level, being told to wait could be detrimental to your career, and you’re looking for the safest, speediest way of getting back on your feet.

By booking a private appointment with one of the top consultant sports physicians in the area, you’ll be able to draw on the extensive knowledge and experience our consultants have gained from working with elite national sporting teams, offering evidence-based treatment for those with even a casual interest in sports.

Typical injuries we see at the Bath Clinic include:

  • Clavicle injuries, such as an acromioclavicular (AC) joint separation
  • Back pain
    • Nerve root
    • Sacroiliac joint pain
    • Slipped disc
    • Ligament or muscle injury
  • Knee injuries such as Meniscal tears and cartilage damage
  • Medial and Lateral elbow injuries, such as tendonitis, Tennis/Golfer’s elbow
  • Scaphoid injury (carpal bone fracture)
  • Repetitive strain injuries
  • Ankle injury, affecting your posture and gait

Sometimes you may benefit from seeing a specialist to rule out any particular difficulties and concerns, gaining the necessary reassurance to go ahead with physiotherapy without the worry of doing further damage. Many patients want this reassurance from professionals with a reliable track record, having dealt with all manner of similar injuries and issues during their extensive experience in the field.

With all this and more on offer at the Bath Clinic, it’s no wonder patients travel from all over the South West and even further afield for this specialised, expert care.

You may have previously been seen by your GP or a physiotherapist, who will have referred you on to us for specialist care. Your initial consultation will involve your consultant asking for a detailed medical history. They will likely want to know:

  • What symptoms have you been experiencing?
  • How did the injury happen?
  • How long have you had your symptoms?
  • Have your symptoms been getting progressively worse?
  • Have you had any previous sporting injuries?
  • Have you had any previous treatment? How effective was it?
  • Are you currently on any medication?
  • What level of activity are you hoping to return to? (e.g. London Marathon, weekend sports on astroturf)

This will be followed by a physical examination, where your consultant will examine the affected joints and assess your symptoms. This may include examining other related areas to check for specific restrictions and injuries. Sometimes this is enough in itself to make an informed diagnosis, but your consultant will often refer you for diagnostic imaging for confirmation.

Thorough diagnostic scans may involve X-ray, ultrasound, CT scans or MRI, and can be carried out in our on-site Imaging department, with results available promptly. Blood tests may also be needed, and these can be carried out at the Bath Clinic on the same day.

With a firm diagnosis in hand, your consultant will be able to discuss with you your condition and outline your treatment options. Certain therapies can be started within this initial consultation, or you will be signposted to the relevant specialist in order to begin treatment without delay.

Occasionally, something like back pain may be a symptom of a larger concern, and you may be referred to one of our other specialties, such as Oncology or Neurology. On other occasions, surgical options may be the most suitable, and again you will be referred to the relevant consultant who can discuss potential surgical procedures to alleviate your symptoms.

Whether you need a short course for rehabilitation of an injury, or you have a chronic condition that needs long-term management, our expert Sports & Exercise medicine team offer the highest level of care to support and guide you through treatment.

Once your goals for recovery have been established, your physician can outline your treatment options. Various therapies can be set up through the Bath Clinic, including:

  • Injection Therapy (corticosteroid injections to relieve pain)
  • Shockwave Therapy (for long-term tendon problems)
  • Physiotherapy

Your consultant can advise you on how physical activity can help manage your condition. When specific exercises are used during your rehabilitation, you’ll see a number of benefits, including:

  • Stronger joint support
  • Stronger muscles
  • Less pain
  • Increased range of motion
  • Greater confidence when moving
  • Better mental health

By restoring confidence in your body and working out a way of pushing yourself while still keeping safe, you’ll see lasting results quickly.

Urgency plays a key role in our treatment at the Bath Clinic. Instead of NHS waiting lists, where you may have a significant wait before your first appointment, private care ensures you are seen without delay. If you’re training for a marathon, or you have a specific event or game that you need to be in better condition by, our consultants can offer you fast-tracked guidance, seeing you promptly and finding the most appropriate form of treatment to get you ready for competition in a timely but safe manner.

You’ll undoubtedly have questions about whether or not you can continue to train, how you can do so effectively and efficiently, and check whether or not you’ll do yourself any further harm if you continue to train. Your consultant will have your best interests at heart, and if a deferred entry is necessary, your consultant will advise you as such.

Certain short-term solutions can be sought, such as corticosteroid injections to bring pain relief, and depending on your symptoms, these can be effective for up to 12 months. The added benefit of this pain relief is that it may allow you to pursue physiotherapy (addressing the root of the problem), which may have been impossible previously.

Activity modification can be effective in addressing your symptoms, and as our consultants and physicians have worked with top level athletes from a wide range of sports, you can be assured that any advice is appropriate and reliable.

One of the huge benefits of seeking treatment at the Bath Clinic is the presence of our highly esteemed purpose-built rehabilitation gym, used by our physiotherapy team for rehabilitation and post-operative recovery, featuring:

  • Exercise Bike
  • Treadmill
  • Balance Master
  • Free weights
  • Stepper
  • Parallel bars
  • Gym balls

All BMI physiotherapists are registered with the Chartered Society of Physiotherapists, ensuring exemplary care is offered throughout your treatment.

By choosing to have your treatment at The Bath Clinic, you’ll be able to take advantage of all these great benefits:

Assessments ASAP – If your quality of life has been affected by the amount of pain your condition is causing you, you’ll want to be seen by a consultant without any unnecessary delay. By seeing patients rapidly, our specialists can get you started on the right course of treatment as soon as possible.

Thorough Investigations – At the point of diagnosis, you need accurate answers rapidly. With fast access to X-ray, CT, ultrasound and MRI scans via our on-site imaging facilities, you won’t be kept waiting long for those all-important results.

Purpose-built Gym – Your rehab needs are perfectly catered for in our bespoke rehabilitation gym, overseen by chartered physiotherapists to help facilitate your recovery in a safe environment.

Patient Satisfaction – 97.9% of patients in 2020 said they would happily recommend BMI The Bath Clinic to friends and family in an independent report, and we’re confident that you’ll agree. 98% also said that the quality of care here at The Bath Clinic was either ‘very good’ or ‘excellent’. We aim to make your stay with us as comfortable as possible, and these results highlight our continued efforts to ensure this is achieved.

Personalised Care – We believe in a bespoke approach to treatment, tailoring each experience to our patients’ needs, based on an accurate diagnosis and your own goals for recovery.

A Multidisciplinary Approach – Our Sports & Exercise Medicine team at the Bath Clinic work in tandem with a wide array of other specialties to provide you with the best possible care from start to finish. Working closely with orthopaedic consultants, chartered physiotherapists, oncologists and neurologists, as well as a dedicated team of radiographers, anaesthetists, and nurses, you have support from medical professionals every step of the way during your treatment.

Convenient Appointments – With appointments available at dedicated clinics throughout the week, you are sure to find an appointment slot that suits your needs and availability.

Easy Access – With ample parking available on-site and a short bus ride from Bath City Centre, the Bath Clinic is easily accessible for all patients, removing the usual stress of visiting hospital.

If you have been suffering from long-term pain which hasn’t been getting any better, why not get in touch with our reception team today to book a consultation? Our consultants can organise the necessary diagnostic tests to investigate your symptoms, and outline all treatment options for you promptly, arranging any further scans if required.

For peace of mind and expert care, please contact BMI The Bath Clinic to book an appointment now.

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