The fact that being a male or female can affect your orthopedic injury is news to many. There are many differences between males and females, as the difference in muscle mass, bones, and ligaments make each sex more vulnerable to different injuries. Understanding these distinctions can help to prevent future injuries.
Most issues with the musculoskeletal system can occur in both men and women, but men are commonly treated for different orthopedic injuries than women.
Hand And Wrist Fractures
Hands and wrists are used throughout the day and even the slightest injury can cause pain and affect our daily activities. Because men engage in working more around the house and using tools more than women, they can suffer more from these types of injuries.
Men also participate in contact sports like football with tackling and struggling with opponents causing more injuries to the hand and wrist.
Soft Tissue Injuries
Men who work physical jobs with constant movement and heavy lifting during the day can cause soft tissue injuries from being worn down over time. This can include tears to the quadriceps in the thighs.
The Achilles tendon connects the calf muscle to the ankle bone. Men are 3 times more likely to sustain an Achilles tendon tear than women. Running track, playing football and basketball can all lead to this injury.
Men are also more vulnerable to shoulder dislocations playing football.
Women are more vulnerable to different types of injuries for various reasons.
Menopause and changes in estrogen levels can affect women in several ways, putting them at higher risk for osteoporosis and hip fractures. There are 300,000 hip fractures a day in those over age 65.
Women are 8 times more likely to have ACL injuries from overuse, including ankle sprains and stress fractures.
Knee osteoporosis, or wear and tear arthritis, is more common in women.
Women suffer more from carpal tunnel syndrome, tendonitis, and osteoarthritis. They also have more joint pain from ligament laxity.
Women have a shallow socket in their shoulder, and therefore, have less shoulder stability.
Ankle sprains and bone injuries are twice as common in females.
Word To The Wise
Preventing injury is the goal of every athlete, coach, and parent. Knowing and understanding the different vulnerabilities of men and women, as well as girls and boys, can help with training and maintaining strong healthy bones, ligaments, and muscles.
Practice the following:
- Address mechanical misalignments before they become a problem
- Strengthen the entire joint by not only working on larger muscles but also smaller ones
- Use resistance band exercises to work on small muscles
- Eat a healthy diet
Request an Appointment with a Sports Medicine Specialist
Seek evaluation from Dr. Camille Clinton if you are experiencing injury or any pain. Dr. Clinton is a highly trained orthopedic surgeon specializing in sports medicine. For further questions or to schedule an appointment, please our office in Kirkland, WA at (425) 899-4810.