Sidelining Injuries: GE Healthcare teams up with the NBA to launch first challenge for sports injuries
February 11, 2016
GE Reports Canada
The world’s basketball stars descend on Toronto this weekend for the annual NBA All-Star game — the first time the game and surrounding events will take place on foreign soil. The game’s greatest will showcase their jaw-dropping athleticism in front of millions around the world.
And while we marvel at their physical prowess, a research collaboration between the NBA and GE Healthcare is well underway to ensure the game is protecting its most important asset, the players.
The National Basketball Association (NBA) is committed to maintaining the health and wellness of its players in order to prevent, diagnose and treat injuries. In July 2015, it launched a research collaboration with GE Healthcare to work with leading clinical researchers and physicians who have demonstrated excellence in orthopedics, sports medicine, radiology and related disciplines.
During the 2014-2015 NBA regular season, knee injuries were one of the top injuries among players, at 13.5%. This is no different for the weekend warriors or fitness enthusiasts who participate in organized sports or fitness training in their spare time. Among adults ages 25-40, the most common injuries in baseball, soccer and softball were fractured or sprained ankles and knees (1). This can also be particularly true for adolescents who participate in organized sports through school or extracurricular activities. It’s reported that sports-related injuries make up about 20% of all injury-related emergency department visits among children ages 6 to 19 (2).
GE and the NBA are now looking for recommendations, including prevention and treatment programs like physical therapy and strength and conditioning routines. In November they launched the first call for research proposals for tendinopathy. This call for proposals seeks to address the natural history of tendinopathy in competitive athletes, the anatomic and dynamic factors that can lead to a negative impact on training or game play and the interventions that can be effective for prevention and treatment. Future calls for research proposals may address bone stress injuries, articular cartilage injury, and other important musculoskeletal issues affecting NBA players.
By combining strong data analytics, expertise in healthcare and a commitment to player health and safety, GE Healthcare and the NBA hope to garner research ideas that help prevent, diagnose and treat commons sports injuries of athletes of all levels across the world.