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What are Volleyball Injuries?

Volleyball is an excellent sport for players of all levels. Volleyball injuries can be defined as those injuries developed during practice or the volleyball game.

Since volleyball is a sport that requires players to be active, but not in frequent high-contact with each other, the injuries seen in this sport may be less severe and less frequent than those seen in football and rugby, for example.

Types and Clinical Presentation of Volleyball Injuries

Volleyball injuries can generally be classified as either chronic (overuse) injuries or acute (traumatic) injuries.

Volleyball injuries are part of the life of a volleyball player.  The development of acute or traumatic injuries is determined by different causes, such as the position of the player during the game and the maneuvers used.

Overuse Injuries

Tendonitis of the wrist may occur.  Sprains and strains happen from the hand to the elbow. Finger injuries frequently occur during setting and blocking movements.  

Finger Injuries

Fingers are vulnerable to injury during volleyball games and practices. Some activities like blocking, setting, and digging can expose the player to injury. Some examples of injuries are fractures, dislocations, and tendon and ligament tears. Treatment for finger injuries vary considerably depending on the severity and characteristics of the injury.

Causes of Volleyball Injuries

There are several injuries associated with volleyball. A thorough examination will assist the clinician in understanding the mechanism of injury and, ultimately, the type of treatment needed.

Due of the forward-directed position and spread of the hands and fingers during the block and due to the power and speed with which the ball is directed by the hitter, there are numerous injuries to the hands and fingers including: sprains of the interphalangeal joints and the first metacarpophalangeal joint, lacerations of the web spaces from abduction injuries of the thumb away from the index finger, fractures of the phalanges, and dislocations of interphalangeal and metacarpophalangeal joints

Overuse injuries occur over time due to stress on the muscles, joints and soft tissues if they do not have proper time for healing. These injuries can begin as a small, nagging ache or pain, and can grow into a debilitating injury if they are ignored and treatment is delayed.  Some overuse injuries common to volleyball players are tennis elbow tendonitis (lateral epicondylitis), wrist tendonitis, forearm muscle strain, and elbow bursitis and ligament and joint sprains.

Treatment Options for Volleyball Injuries

The treatment of volleyball injuries depends on the type of injury and the part of the body affected. Usually, acute or traumatic injuries require ice, compression and rest as well as elevation of the affected extremity. Overuse and acute traumatic injuries are managed by a hand surgeon and can include surgical intervention for injuries of greater magnitude and those that do not respond to conservative treatments.

Minor injuries are often treated conservatively. Some examples of these injuries are dislocations and finger sprains. Finger dislocations and first metacarpophalangeal sprains and dislocations can usually be treated with tape support or splinting.

However, it is key to get an accurate diagnosis from a surgeon like Dr. Jason Pruzansky or Dr. Mark Pruzansky in order to try and get the best outcomes.

Preventing Volleyball Injuries

Several strategies can help prevent volleyball injuries, ranging from preparation and safety equipment to the careful inspection of the court.

The proper preparation for the play includes maintaining strength, warming up and stretching, cooling down properly, getting enough hydration, and using sun protection during games.  

If You Believe You Have a Volleyball Injury, Contact HandSport Surgery Institute

Please contact us as soon as possible to schedule an appointment with our talented team. People who have been hurt while playing volleyball should be evaluated to try and prevent further injury and mobility issues.

If you have been injured, it’s important to be evaluated by a highly skilled professional. Call Drs. Mark and Jason Pruzansky at 212-249-8700 to schedule an appointment and obtain an accurate diagnosis.

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