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42 of the most common orthotics terms you should learn

Both professionals and amateurs alike are susceptible to sports injuries, regardless of your fitness levels.

Whilst warming up before exercise and cooling down afterwards are integral parts of playing sport, sometimes pushing the body too far or playing a contact sport can lead to a sprain or joint condition and a spell on the sidelines.

When you do find yourself sat in front of a doctor or a physiotherapist a few of the following terms may come up, so here’s your chance to brush up on a few of them so you can understand what is going on.

Spine Clinician1

Glossary of Terms

This is a sports injury glossary of terms which you will typically encounter, including some of the more common anatomical and medical terms used.

Abduct: To move a limb away from the middle of the body.

Achilles Tendonitis: Chronic pain around the Achilles tendon which is caused by degeneration (rather than inflammation) and more correctly termed Achilles tendinopathy.

Aduct: To move a limb towards the middle of the body.

Anterior Cruciate Ligament (ACL): A ligament deep in the knee joint which connects the femur with the tibula. It prevents hyperextension and too much rotation of the knee joint.

Biomechanical: Relates to the mechanical characteristics of the human body.

Bursa: A sac of fluid within joints to prevent friction between two tissues.

Bursitis: Inflammation of a bursa, generally as a result of overuse.

Chronic: An injury or condition that develops over time and persists for a prolonged period.

Collagen: A protein-based connective tissue which constitutes the greater part of bone, skin, cartilage, tendon, and ligaments.

Contusion: A bruise.

Dislocation: Displacement of one or more bones in a joint.

Epicondyle: A raised prominence on a bone, usually where a muscle, tendon or ligament is attached.

Epicondylitis: Inflammation at the epicondyle of a long bone. It is common at the lateral epicondyle of the elbow, where it is commonly known as Tennis Elbow, or at the medial epicondyle, where it is known as Golfer’s Elbow.

External Rotation: Movement of a limb or body part away from the mid line of the body.

Fascia: A collagenous soft tissue sheath that encloses an organ or muscle.

Femur: The bone which runs from the hip to the knee.

Fibula: The smaller of the two shin bones, located on the lateral aspect of the leg.

Fracture:  A broken bone.

Groin strain: A strain to one of the adductor muscles.

Haematoma: A pooling of blood in soft tissue which is normally visible as a bruise.

Haemorrhage: Internal bleeding.

Hyperextension: Extension of a joint beyond the normal range of motion.

Ilio-Tibial Band: The fibrous sheath that runs along the lateral aspect of the thigh between the hip and the knee.

Immobilisation: Prevention of movement in a body part, either through strapping or plaster cast.

Inflammation: The natural response by the body to tissue damage resulting in swelling, heat and pain.

Internal Rotation: Movement of a limb or body part towards the mid line of the body.

Lateral: The further of two points or anatomical markers from the mid line of the body.

Malleolus: The bony prominences on either side of the ankle.

Medial: The nearer of two points or anatomical markers to the mid line of the body.

Neuralgia: Pain caused by damage to nerves.

Orthopaedics: The medical specialty which deals with musculoskeletal problems.

Patella: The knee cap.

Plantar Fascia: The thick band of collagenous tissue in the arch of the foot.

Posterior: Structures that are situated at the rear of the body.

Rotator Cuff: A group of four muscles — Supraspinatus, Subscapularis, Infraspinatus and Teres Minor – which provide stability to the shoulder joint.

Rupture: A complete tear of a ligament, tendon or other soft tissue.

Scapula: The shoulder blade.

Sprain: Injury involving a tear of a ligament

Strain: Injury involving a tear or partial tear of muscle tissue.

Tendonitis: Inflammation of a tendon.

Tibia: The medial shin bone.

Trauma: Injury or tissue damage caused by direct force.

Obviously, if something comes up in your consultation that you don’t fully understand then just ask and they will be happy to explain it to you as not everyone outside of the medical profession knows all the above terms off by heart.

If you’re looking for the next step in your vocabulary expansion then check out of blog on 45 of the longest and clinical names (and how to pronounce them).