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Dr. Russo's Sports Medicine Blog

October 30, 2015

Pelicans fans are probably wondering who comes up with these rules on how many minutes Jrue Holiday can play each game.

 

It isn't easy for the medical staff to make the decision to hold a star player out the game, especially when fans, coaches, and staff are probably pushing to get Jrue back on the court.  The problem is the Pelicans star has had recurrent tibial stress fractures despite surgery and rest.  There is no special formula out there to calculate the exact time someone can play.  Doctors have to weigh the risks and benefits of the patient and balance winning with staying healthy.  (And that was not something we were taught in medical school)

 

Tall thin basketball players who are jumping and coming down on a hard court are a set-up for stress injuries to the tibia (a narrow bone that must absorb all our body weight).  

 

Stress injuries to the tibia are a spectrum of disorders ranging from "shin splints" to outright fractures.  The earlier we diagnose and treat...

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