Double ACL Tears Part Of National Trend For Female Athletes - FOX 26 News | MyFoxHouston

Double ACL Tears Part Of National Trend For Female Athletes

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A warning for parents as spring and summer sports seasons heat up.  Doctors say there's more evidence than ever that boys and girls are participating on an uneven playing field when it comes to injuries. 

Alyssa Culpepper wrestles at Jersey Village High School. 

"It's like a combat sport," she says.

That she was wrestling at all her senior year is remarkable.  Over the summer Alyssa had surgery on a torn ACL, only to return to competition six months later.

"I got cleared and then my first competition back I tore it.  I knew it.  It was the same sensation."

Double ACL tears are part of a nationwide trend in the wake of more girls and young women playing sports. 

"There are a lot of studies that show women can sustain two to six times the injury rate as their male counterpart," said Dr. Anup Shah, orthopedic surgeon with Kelsey-Seybold Clinic.

Why?  Dr. Shah says the difference is found in their genes and how they're built.

"Women have wider pelvises.  They have different stresses on joints in their bodies which increases their likelihood of injury, especially to the knee," he said.

The injuries have taken their toll on Alyssa, both physically, emotionally and financially.

"I feel like if coaches knew the right technique, athletes wouldn't get hurt," she said.

The STOP Sports Injury Campaign by orthopedic surgeons aims to educate coaches, athletes and parents.

"THere needs to be a good education program in place in terms of listening to the body, staying hydrated, using proper technique and learning the bio mechanics of your sport," said Dr. Shah.


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