Previous reports relating to sports injuries treated at hospital Accident and Emergency departments (A&E) or Sports Injury Clinics (SIC) indicate differences between the groups. This study compared directly the sports injuries treated during overlapping time periods at an A&E department (n = 2490) and a SIC (n = 340) set within the same geographical area. The two populations were found to differ significantly in age, sport, injury and injury site. Hospital patients tended to be younger, with an acute injury to the upper body or head which occurred during participation in sports where contact is likely. SIC patients tended to be older, with chronic or overuse injuries to the back or lower limb. It was found that there are significant differences between the sports injuries treated at the sports injury clinic and the hospital casualty department. It is concluded that demand is clearly shown for both types of treatment site when both are available in the same geographical area.
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