Recent advances in treating sports injuries are likely to be just the beginning. Watch for developments in these areas in the not-too-distant future:
- The need for surgery may decline as improved rehabilitation techniques lead to a more "natural" progression to recovery for more musculoskeletal injuries.
- Technical advances and new imaging methods will lead to better ways to diagnose and treat injuries.
- Scientists will gain a better understanding of the role of nutrition in inflammation and healing. Such knowledge could lead to improvements in treatment.
- Tissue engineering will become more commonplace. Early studies of cartilage tissue engineering are now underway.
- Using gene therapy, doctors may be able to modify particular cells to induce repair of injured tissues.