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Clinical predictors of time to return to competition and of recurrence following hamstring strain in elite Australian footballers
  1. Price Warren (r.warren2{at}pgrad.unimelb.edu.au)
  1. University of Melbourne, Australia
    1. Belinda J Gabbe (belinda.gabbe{at}med.monash.edu.au)
    1. Monash University, Australia
      1. Michel Schneider-Kolsky
      1. Monash University, Australia
        1. Kim L Bennell (k.bennell{at}unimelb.edu.au)
        1. University of Melbourne, Australia

          Abstract

          Objective: To investigate early clinical predictors of time to return to competition and of recurrence following hamstring strain.

          Design: Prospective observational study.

          Setting: Elite level of Australian Football competition.

          Participants: 59 players who suffered a hamstring strain in 2002 season.

          Predictors: Clinical assessment by a physiotherapist and questionnaire.

          Main outcome measures: Time taken to return to play and recurrence of hamstring injury within 3 weeks.

          Results: Players taking more than one day to walk pain-free were significantly more likely to take longer than three weeks to return to competition (AOR 4.0; 95% CI 1.3, 12.6; p=0.018). Nine players (15.2%) experienced an injury recurrence; all involving the biceps femoris. Recurrence was more likely in players who reported a hamstring injury in past 12 months (AOR 19.6; 95% CI: 1.5, 261.0; p=0.025).

          Conclusion: Time to walk pain-free and previous hamstring injury are predictors of time to return to competition and recurrence, respectively, and should be included in a clinical assessment to aid in prognosis.

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