Athletico/Bank of America Marathon;  Kris Dunn’s Finger Injury; Post Marathon Recovery

Episode 17.27 with Hosts Steve Kashul and Dr. Brian Cole. Broadcasting on ESPN Chicago 1000 WMVP-AM Radio, Saturdays from 8:30 to 9:00 AM/c.

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Segment One (01:34): Travis Orth PT, DPT from Athletico Physical Therapy talks about the history and involvement of Athletico with the Bank of America Chicago Marathon: providing endurance program therapists; pre and post run medical services; free injury screening; video gait and form analysis; lectures on recovery.

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Travis is an APTA Board Certified Orthopedic Specialist.  He also has advanced manual therapy training from the North American Institute of Orthopedic Manual Therapy.  In 2015 Travis was selected as one of three therapists nationally to participate in the prestigious Kevin Wilk Sports Travel Fellowship. His passion for sports medicine and scientific research is highlighted through over 10 publications, including 5 peer reviewed articles. He is an endurance specialist, published in both Triathlon and Running magazines.  He is also an accomplished Ironman and Boston Marathon qualifier.

Learn more about Athletico’s Endurance Rehabilitation Services

Segment Two (10:33): Bulls point guard Kris Dunn suffered an open dislocation of his left index finger during Chicago’s 114-101 preseason win over the Milwaukee Bucks, head coach Fred Hoiberg said. Dunn hurt his finger after trying to contest a dunk from Bucks shooting guard Sterling Brown. Dr. Cole explains the protocol in treating this type of injury and the fast work by his medical team to minimize the damage and pain.

An upbeat Kris Dunn addresses his future after finger injury

Segment Three (19.36):  Dr. Doug Adams PT, DPT, SCS, OCS, CSCS for ATI Physical Therapy discusses Post Marathon Recovery:

  1. What Happens to the body after marathon?
  2. How long does it take to recover?
  3. What can a runner do to speed up the recovery process?
  4. When should someone return to running after a marathon?

Dr. Doug Adams is a residency trained Physical Therapist with dual Board Certified Specialties in sports and orthopedics. Doug treats a largely athletic population from Olympic level to weekend warrior, with a focus on runners and triathletes. He created Trace3D, which is a portable 3D Motion Analysis System that is one of the first systems to allow access to 3D biomechanical data for athletes outside of a research or professional sports setting.

Doug also frequently lectures on sports medicine topics both locally and nationally, with multiple peer-reviewed publications. Doug is an Advisory Board Liaison and treats patients in Wilmington, DE for ATI Physical Therapy and is the Co-Founder of a Continuing Education Company called Association of Clinical Excellence.

See our Related ATI post: Tips for a Healthy Post-Marathon Recovery

The Importance of Sleep for Dancers; Treating Hand & Wrist Injuries

Episode 17.26 with Hosts Steve Kashul and Dr. Brian Cole. Broadcasting on ESPN Chicago 1000 WMVP-AM Radio, Saturdays from 8:30 to 9:00 AM/c.

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Segment One (01:25): Julie O’Connell PT, DPT, OCS, ATC, Performing Arts Medicine importance of sleep for dancersProgram Manager at Athletico-River North talks dancers vs other athletes regarding sleep; what happens during sleep for dancers and useful tips for quality sleep. While the days are getting shorter, rehearsals are getting longer and cutting into valuable time meant for counting sheep.

Julie specializes in the treatment of dancers and performing artists and has extensive experience working with organizations like The Joffrey Ballet, Hubbard Street Dance Chicago and Broadway in Chicago.

The CDC recommends 8-10 hours of sleep for teens 13-18 years old, and 7 or more hours per night for adults 18-60 years old. This can be difficult to achieve for dancers, whose rehearsals consist of specialized physical activity of high volume, frequency and intensity throughout the week. Dancers also don’t usually have an off-season, which can contribute to increased incidence of altered sleep-wake rhythms, illness and musculoskeletal injuries. More>>

Segment Two (13:11): Dr. John Fernandez from Midwest Orthopaedics at Rush describes microsurgery; recent innovations in hand and wrist surgery; re-plantation and transplantation of limbs; types of hand injuries experienced by athletes at all levels.

Dr. John FernandezDr. Fernandez has created and innovated some of the advanced surgeries currently popularized in the treatment of the hand, wrist, and elbow. His original research has led to techniques minimizing surgical trauma while maximizing outcomes. As an inventor, he holds patents in some of the very implants developed for these minimally invasive surgeries.

As director of microsurgery for Midwest Orthopaedics at Rush, he has performed hundreds of successful microsurgical procedures. These have included replantation of amputated arms, hands, and digits, as well as complex reconstructions for deformity and wounds.

He is a board certified member of the ABOS and holds the highest distinction in hand surgery with a certificate of added qualification in hand and microsurgery. He is a fellow of the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons and a member of the American Association for Hand Surgery as well as the American Society for Surgery of the Hand.


By Dev K. Mishra, M.D., President, Sideline Sports Doc, Clinical Assistant Professor of Orthopedic Surgery, Stanford University

Key Points:

  • A jammed finger occurs with direct impact to the tip of a finger and is generally a mild sprain that resolves in a few days
  • Some finger injuries can be more serious and require urgent evaluation. Examples would include complete tendon tears, joint dislocation, or broken bone.
  • Use The SAFE Method™ (Story, Appearance, Feel, Effort) to rapidly evaluate an injured finger

Catching or getting hit by a ball on the tip of a finger- a football, volleyball, or basketball- is generalyouthbasketball a common way kids and young adults can injure a finger. Fortunately, most finger injuries are reasonably mild and will allow for a quick return to sport. A “jammed finger” is a sprain of the soft tissue structures surrounding a joint. But sometimes a tendon (a structure that links muscle to bone, and cause fingers to move) can be torn, or a joint can be dislocated, or one of the bones broken.

There are some simple steps you can take to rapidly evaluate an injury and make a reasonable determination about whether it’s safe to continue play, or perhaps whether you should seek urgent physician evaluation. At Sideline Sports Doc, we use a simple evaluation for sports injuries that we call The SAFE Method™. The SAFE Method™ is an acronym for Story, Appearance, Feel, and Effort. You use these four points to evaluate pretty much any sports injury. Here’s how you use it for a jammed finger.


Basically this means “how did it get hurt”. Most of the time there will be direct contact to the tip of the finger, that’s pretty obvious. But here you want to be on the lookout for things such as very severe pain, whether you may have heard a pop, or whether you may have felt something crack. Those are all “red flags” indicating that you might have a significant injury. If you have any of those red flags I’d recommend evaluation in an urgent care facility. And if you don’t have any red flags, move on to…


What does it look like? In most typical jammed fingers your finger should look pretty normal in the first several minutes after the injury, this is common with a simple jammed finger. (It may get swollen an hour or two later…) But what if it is rapidly becoming swollen, or if it’s bent at an unusual angle, or if the joint is obviously out of position? If any of those things are what you’re seeing then go to an emergency room for proper treatment. Does it look normal? That’s good, so move on next to Feel.


In “feel” you want to press lightly on the injured joint. Generally this will produce mild soreness with a common jammed finger. But if your light touch feels really painful that’s a red flag indicating the need for urgent evaluation. Significant pain with light touch is often present with broken bones. Are you still doing ok? Then move on to the last evaluation step, Effort.


In this last step you want to make an effort at moving the injured area on your own. For hand injuries this is done by making a fist and opening the fingers out straight. If you’re able to do this fairly easily, that’s good and generally goes along with a jammed finger. But what if you can’t make a fist, can’t open the fingers, or if the joint just won’t move? That could mean a torn tendon, or possibly another significant injury. Get yourself to an urgent care facility.

So if you pass each of the four steps without any red flags or areas of concern youSideLineSportsDoc probably have a sprain or a jammed finger. Get home and apply RICE (rest, ice, compression, elevation) and monitor your progress each day. But if things don’t start turning back to normal in the next few days, or if you have concerns that it isn’t healing as you’d expect then it’s always safe to seek proper physician evaluation.

Featured Body Part: Wrist

Featured Body Part: Wrist

By Kristy Loose, DPT, OTR/L, CHT, Angela Bender and Cori Cameron for ATI Physical Therapy

As stated by Mary Reilly, “Man through the use of his hands as they are energized by mind and will, can influence the state of his own health.” The wrist is a crucial joint for our hands to be able to explore our environment and injuries can lead to serious functional impairments.

The wrist joint is comprised of three main joints: radiocarpal, midcarpal, and intercarpal joints. The main motion at the wrist joint is flexion/extension (movement of the wrist up and down) and radial deviation/ulnar deviation (movement of the wrist from side to side) which are accomplished via five primary movers and three peripheral nerves. Being aware of common conditions and causes of pain, how to treat them, and how to generally keep our wrists healthy, can be a key factor in preventing an acute injury from progressing to chronic, life-long pain.

Common Causes
While we may not think about how much use our wrist typically gets in a day, when we start to experience pain we definitely take notice of the importance of this joint. Injuries, arthritis, and other ailments can all cause pain.

  • Carpal Tunnel Syndrome – CTS is caused when the median nerve becomes compressed, or pinched. This compression is caused by swelling in the wrist; the wrist pain associated with this is due to the excess pressure on the nerve.
  • Sudden (Acute) Injuries – Sprains, broken bones, and tendonitis can all cause pain in the wrist. Symptoms of an injury can include swelling, bruising, or disfigured joints near the wrist.
  • Arthritis – Pain, stiffness, and swelling of the wrist may be caused by various forms of arthritis. Arthritis can be caused by many things, including overuse, aging, and normal wear and tear.
  • Gout – When your body breaks down foods containing purines, uric acid is produced. A buildup of uric acid may cause gout, which can result in pain and swelling in the wrists, knees, ankles and feet.

Common Conditions
While there are multiple conditions associated with wrist pain, some of the common conditions include:

  • Carpal Tunnel Syndrome – CTS is a condition that causes numbness and tingling in the hand and arm. The syndrome is caused by a compressed nerve in the carpal tunnel, the narrow passageway on the palm side of your wrist.
  • Strains – A wrist strain can occur when there is a simple overstretching of the tendon or the ligaments of the wrist bone, or it can occur when there is a partial or complete tear in the tendon or the ligaments.
  • Sprains – A sprained wrist is an injury to any of the numerous ligaments which connect bone to bone in the wrist.
  • Tendonitis – Tendonitis is an irritation and inflammation of one or more of the many tendons surrounding the wrist joint.
  • Arthritis – Inflammation in any of the small joints in the wrist can be a sign of arthritis. Arthritis attacks your bones by destroying the cartilage, causing your bones to rub against one another.

Injury Prevention
Kristy Loose, DPT, OTR/L, CHT, gives us some tips to help prevent and rehabilitate wrist injuries:

  • Watch Your Positioning – Keep your wrists straight or only slightly bent while performing activities. Avoid activities that bend or twist the wrists for long periods of time.
  • Take Breaks – Take frequent breaks from typing or other repetitive activities to stretch your hands and wrists.
  • Watch Your Grip – Whenever possible, use your whole hand to grasp an object. There may be less pain with gripping in a supinated (palms-up) position rather than a pronated (palms-down) position.
  • Wear the Right Protective Equipment during Activities – When working with tools that vibrate (drills, sanders), use specially designed gloves that support the wrist and have vibration-absorbing padding. Take frequent breaks, and switch hands often.
  • Pay Attention – Stop any activities that you think may be causing numbness and pain.

If you have pain in your wrist that isn’t going away, rehabilitation can help to improve functionality. During rehabilitation you will work on:

  • Avoiding Gripping – Gripping increases carpal load.
  • Considering Forearm Position to Minimize Carpal Load and Create a More Stable Wrist – In a neutral wrist position, 80% of the load is transmitted through the radiocarpal joint and 20% through the ulnocarpal joint. Pronation and ulnar deviation may increase ulnocarpal load up to nearly 40%, something to keep in mind when choosing your positioning for therapy exercises in those with ulnar sided wrist pain.
  • Maximizing Range of Motion Is Not the Goal – The goal is for functional range of motion with good stability and no pain.
  • Gradual Strengthening – Using isometrics, eccentrics, and concentrics.
  • Stabilization – Extensor carpi ulnaris, flexor carpi ulnaris, and hypothenar muscles will stabilize the ulnar wrist, while flexor carpi radialis will stabilize the radial wrist.

When weighing your treatment options for wrist pain and injuries, consider occupational therapy. ATI Physical Therapy offers a wide variety of treatment options including strengthening, stretching, and sustainable home exercise programs. Stop in or call any ATI location for a complimentary injury screen or to learn more about how we can help you overcome your elbow pain.

It’s all in the wrist!