Foot & Ankle Allografts; The NBA Combine; Spectator Sports & Long Flight Stretches

Episode 17.06 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 (02:36): Dr. Brett Sachs for AlloSource discusses the most common uses of allograft transplants in treating foot and ankle defects; the evolution and new innovations in treatments; ongoing stem cell research at AlloSource.

Image result for foot & ankle allograft

Dr. Sachs is a board-certified foot and ankle surgeon and part owner of Rocky Mountain Foot & Ankle Center. Dr. Sachs studied biology at the University of Maryland and completed his Doctor of Podiatric Medicine degree at Temple University School of Podiatric Medicine. He completed a 3-year podiatric surgical residency at Presbyterian/St. Luke’s Medical Center in Denver, Colorado, followed by an orthopedic trauma residency at Kaiser Permanente.

For More Information Please Visit AlloSource.org


Segment Two (11:21): Dr. Cole talks with Steve about wrapping up the end of season with the Chicago Bulls, overview of injuries, off-season activities and the 2017 NBA Combine.


 Segment Three (19:44): Anne Bierman PT, DPT, SCS from Athletico talks about the importance of stretching and posture while at spectator sports and during long flights. The combination of cramped flights and sitting for hours on end during games often leads to back pain and muscle soreness for fans. What are the signs of injury and muscle strain from sedentary activity that you should be aware of. 

Anne Marie Bierman (“Anny”) received her Bachelor of Science in Exercise Science, MPT, and DPT all through Saint Louis University.  At SLU, she was an All-Conference and All-Region soccer player, and Female Athlete of the Year in 2004.  She is a board-certified clinical specialist in sports physical therapy and certified in Astym.  Anny represents the Eastern Central District of the IPTA on both Nominating Committee and as a State Assembly Representative.

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ACL-TRANSPLANT RETURNS MONTANA WOMAN TO MANAGING COUNTRY FAIR

A Case Study by AlloSource: Doing More with Life

Connie eagerly anticipated her adult son’s visit home for Christmas in 2009. During his visit, he teamed up with his former classic rock band for a reunion show at a local pub. Connie’s family, as well as the family of another band member, were excited to be together for the holidays and were enjoying the show. Suddenly, trouble broke out in the pub. “An argument erupted behind me,” Connie said. “I stood up to move to the other side of the table but my snow boot caught on the rung of the chair just as one man pushed another into me, knocking me over.”

Shortly thereafter, as Connie was still lying on the floor, a large man fell onto her legs. Connie sustained serious injuries: her left leg was broken and her right ACL was blown out. Aside from the pain and day-to-day struggles that dealing with two injured legs presented, Connie’s injuries also meant she could not adequately do her job, which she had a great passion for. After serving as Montana’s property tax supervisor for 30 years, Connie was at the time working as the local county fair manager. Although the work was taxing (including everything from negotiating entertainment contracts to cleaning horse stalls), she absolutely loved it.

As a full year passed after the injury, Connie’s broken leg was casted and healed. She wore a brace on her right knee with the injured ACL, and knew her options for that leg were either to live with the injury in a brace for the rest of her life, or try an ACL transplant, using donated tissue from a deceased human donor. Eager to resume an active lifestyle and work for the county fair, Connie opted for the transplant.

The surgery didn’t require any large incisions, only 4 small holes where instruments expanded the skin around Connie’s knee for viewing and working. Doctors performed meniscus reconstruction and then anchored the donated tendon diagonally from her tibia to femur. Following the surgery Connie was excited to get her leg back into working order. However, she was tired of the frequent doctor visits from the past year, and wasn’t pleased with the prospect of having to return again for physical therapy. Instead, she set up her own therapy routine at home.


“After a few harrowing days in a recliner I got on an exercise bike. I began slowly pedaling in front of the TV, an hour each morning and night. I had quite a setup. Morning Sudoku and coffee while pedaling to the Today Show, herbal tea and a sitcom at night,” she said.


And the training worked; Connie’s doctors were very pleased with her gradual improvement in range of motion. By Spring of 2010, after a year of working from home, Connie was elated to be able to get back to the fairgrounds and the work she loves. “It’s now been one and a half years since my transplant. I still get a little stiff if I don’t stay active, but I recently finished my second summertime county fair since surgery and reports from the public are that this was the best one in years,” she said.

Connie reflects on the gift of life that allowed her to return to work with earnestness and appreciation. “I believe the body is the human’s earthly vessel. Our deceased loved ones are hopefully in a wonderful place; their tissue is no longer needed by them. I honor whoever is selfless enough to understand that,” Connie said. “We offer an unused blanket to a shivering homeless man, food to a starving child, spare change to a simple benefit drive or money in the collection plate at church.

We give. It’s an odd feeling for me to be a recipient of any such gift because I’ve always been more of a giver, but I feel humbled in knowing someone gave tissue to me when I was in need.” Connie is a registered organ, tissue and bone marrow donor. “As the old saying goes, if one life can breathe easier because of me, then I’ve gained my own measure of success. If I could speak to my donor I would say: thank you for helping to make people at a small county fair smile. You’re a success.

5 Tips for the Aging Athlete

By Leython Williams, PT, DPT for Athletico Physical Therapy

  • Research shows that as much as 50 percent of the declines in health due to aging are related to inactivity. 
  • Successful aging has been linked to genetics and a healthy lifestyle that consists of proper nutrition and exercise, but what about the aging athlete who isn’t a stranger to activity?
  • What are some key considerations for seniors as their activity levels remain high, but their body’s physiologic response changes with age?

As baby boomers become more active and healthy living becomes a bit trendier, I’ve been receiving a lot of these questions from patients who endeavor to stay active as they refuse to let their age slow them down. Thus, I’ve put together some tips to help us, aging athletes, age successfully!

1. Accept it.

Whether athletic or not, the processes of aging are the same in all of us. Even with the healthiest lifestyle, we all undergo predictable changes in our body systems that include disease states and compromises in our performance. Our bodies are sure to change; accepting this inevitability will only help us adapt and adjust to these changes, while decreasing the likelihood for injury and/or impairment. Here are a few basic systemic changes to consider as “Father Time” knocks at each of our doors:

  • Nervous System
    • Decreased Sensation
    • Decreased Balance
  • Respiratory System
    • Decreased Vital Capacity/Breathing Capacity of Lungs: Maximum amount of air a person can exhale after maximum inhalation
  • Cardiovascular System
    • Decreased Maximum Heart Rate (decreases by 5-10 beats per decade)
    • Slower return to resting HR after and during exercise
  • Musculoskeletal System
    • Decreased Bone Strength
    • Decreased Muscular Strength
    • Decreased Flexibility
  • Vision
    • Farsightedness
    • Relates to Balance/Coordination
  • Hearing Loss

2. Turn it up.

Any given sport or workout has three elements that can be manipulated in one’s fitness regimen to obtain the desired results: frequency, duration and intensity. Intensity is the operative word here – as we get older, the tendency is to trade in intensity for duration. However, as athletes, we need to do the very opposite in order to perform at a high level. Avoid the long, slow distances and incorporate exercises with an emphasis on muscular endurance, anaerobic endurance and power. Higher intensities over a shorter duration, 2-3 times a week will help to stimulate testosterone release, which helps maintain muscle mass.

3. Lift it up.

Putting the muscles and bones under stress through lifting weights and even performing body-weight resisted exercises (such as push-ups, squats and lunges) help to promote bone and muscle health. This is essential in an effort to negate the decrease in bone density that comes with aging. Rebuilding bone and gaining muscle is still a possibility no matter what age we are!

4. Recover.

Sleep and nutrition are directly linked to an athlete’s ability to recover from strenuous activity. The days of being able to perform at a high level on little sleep and/or a bad diet become fewer and fewer as we get older.

Sleep is essential because it is our body’s way of regenerating from the breakdown caused by the increased intensity of our exercise regimens (see above). Adequate sleep is also linked to increased testosterone levels, which increases muscle and bone mass in men and women.

Nutrition is also integral in an aging athlete’s recovery and performance; food is fuel. Macronutrients and micronutrients are twin concerns as they relate to an athlete’s nutrition. It is crucial that macronutrients, such as carbohydrates and proteins, are replenished after competition or exercise. Carbohydrates are considered to be the athlete’s “Master Fuel” as they provide energy to 50 percent of any moderate to rigorous endurance workout. Proteins are essential as they are the building blocks of muscle and bone, as well as aide in the build and repair of tissues after breakdown. Micronutrients, in vitamins and minerals, are essential as they facilitate energy production and utilization from carbohydrate, fat and protein; transport oxygen and carbon dioxide; and regulate fluid balance.

5. Hydrate.

Water is arguably the most essential nutrient in the human diet. H2O regulates our temperature and maintains several bodily functions such as food digestion, absorption of its nutrients and excretion of waste. Athletes of all ages need to be sure to hydrate before, during and after moderate to rigorous activity. Exercise, sports and environmental conditions can all impact fluid loss, which refers to expending more fluids than we take in. Research shows that one percent of fluid loss makes the heart beat 3-5 times greater per minute, which is especially significant in the aging population that will naturally have certain cardiac considerations. It is not uncommon to lose a sense of thirst as we get older and certain medications may make it even more important to drink water. Thus hydration must be a concentrated effort.

Get in the Game

All in all, it is an unavoidable fact that the aging process causes a gradual decline in a person’s ability to adapt and adjust to their environment. While exercise and athletic activity certainly slows down this decline, it is imperative that aging athletes understand that they are not exempt to these bodily changes simply because they are active. Accepting this fact of life is not conceding defeat by any means, but it assists in developing and executing the game plan to aging successfully! Get in the game!

Click here if you would like to learn more from an Athletico physical therapist near you to request an appointment!

Unwrapping the physiology of a Tour de France champion

Image result for tour de france champions born or made where do we take the genetics of performance

Given the current spotlight on sport concerning the use and abuse of Performance Enhancing Drugs (PEDs), there is a public interest in athletes providing greater transparency with regard to what makes them elite. In this study, the investigators conducted a thorough examination into the physiological characteristics of a two-time Tour de France champion cyclist.

Several interesting results were found including: 1) some of the highest aerobic capacity values in a cyclist on record; 2) high cycling efficiency; and 3) a higher than anticipated body fat percentage. Collectively, the data demonstrated what may be the required physiological characteristics to be a Tour de France champion. While the data can neither confirm nor deny the use of PEDs, it is perhaps a step in the right direction to publicly demonstrate the type of physiology required to be one of the greatest endurance athletes in the world.

For more information, view the abstract