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Looking back over the past 20–25 years of taking care of athletes at all levels, we can appreciate substantial improvements. In most cases during this period, the injured athlete returned to sports activity; previously, sports-related injuries were often career-ending.
Credit is due in part to the work of sports traumatologists, pioneers within modern orthopaedics. Mini-invasive surgery, especially arthroscopic techniques, have considerably reduced surgical morbidity. From what previously required an open wound 10–25 cm long, ACL reconstruction is now performed through 2 or 3 stab wounds, 5 mm in size. This means shorter surgical times, shorter hospital stay and improved patient-rated outcomes.
Similarly, sports cardiology has developed and now offers team physicians and athletes preventive measures (cardiac screening, superior ECG interpretation recommendations1) as well as improved safety at sports events (automated external defibrillators).
Despite the above achievements, we see room for further improvement in at least four areas.
Prevention programmes need better implementation.
Ten to 15 years ago, prevention …