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Sports Medicine

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Covering all female sports teams poses particular challenges. Since the Title IX established in the U.S. in 1972 ensuring that men and women have equitable participation opportunities, as well as access to scholarships in sport programs, and since UNESCO recognized sports and physical activity as a human right in 1978, the world and the global sports communities have come a long way in pursuing gender equality in sports.
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The man who acts as his own lawyer has a fool for a client. And the physician having himself for a patient? One of the biggest challenges in team coverage is to cover and direct oneself – and that is particularly true for medical professionals. This article serves as a first hand report of the ways and vagaries of winning the IRONMAN age group world championship while working as a self employed orthopedic surgeon.
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There is incontrovertible evidence of the benefits of regular physical activity in the primary and secondary prevention of several chronic diseases, on contrary a sedentary lifestyle can progress into a Sedentary Death Syndrome (SeDS), which is a major Public Health burden due to its causing multiple chronic diseases and a large amount of premature deaths each year. In Italy, Sports Medicine represents a fundamental reference for those practicing physical activity at competitive or non-competitive level; its purposes include: health care of the athletes practicing all kind of sports, through the pre-participation screening for elegibility (such screening constitutes an established medical programme that has been implemented for more than 30 years), and the promotion of diagnostic and therapeutic protocols to guarantee the state of health of individual at high risk or carrying a specific diagnosed disease.
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It is indeed quite a challenge to define sports medicine in a way that suits the greatest number. The reason is that the speciality involves a wide scope of different healthcare measures for a very broad population, from professional athletes to recreative active individuals. It contains diagnostic, curative, rehabilitative and preventive medical measures, on the field, in the clinic and the medical office or even in the physiology laboratory. And this heterogeneity also concerns the physicians practicing – or pretending it! – sports medicine.
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