Ringside medicine is a unique specialty encompassing all aspects of medical care. Ringside physicians need to be well versed in multiple specialties in order to insure the well-being of the competitor.
Furthermore, doctors involved in combat sports (boxing, mixed martial arts (MMA), kickboxing, bare knuckle boxing, Muay Thai, etc.) need to appreciate the nuances of each sport and provide the proper care to protect these athletes. As such, educating healthcare professionals to be able to identify those competitors who should not participate is imperative. Preventing individuals at higher risk from competing can certainly reduce the risk of morbidity, mortality and the ultimate sequela of potential long-term injuries. Additionally, having the expertise to recognize the potential signs and symptoms of an injured fighter during a contest is crucial in preventing catastrophes.
It is the goal of the physicians involved with combat sports to protect the health and safety of combat sports athletes. As education and experience is a key factor, the new book created by Dr. Gerard “Rusty” Varlotta and the Association of Ringside Physicians (“ARP”), is a significant achievement in attaining this objective.
“The care of the injured combat sports athlete requires a comprehensive understanding of a multitude of injures and medical conditions that result from this high-risk sport,” Editor In Chief Dr. Varlotta explained. “Any physician providing medical coverage MUST have the knowledge to appropriately diagnose and treat the injured fighter. Any healthcare professional must have a diverse knowledge base that is specific to this sport and not necessarily within their own clinical expertise and training. Understanding all of the medical aspects of combat sports will result in improved safety and health of the combat athlete. The editors of this Manual of Combat Sports Medicine have assembled world-class ringside physicians to share their knowledge of the care of the combat sports athlete.”
Combat sports medical coverage requires unique knowledge and medical skills and thus the need for a comprehensive manual for competent care of the combat sports athlete. This manual is the most comprehensive accumulation of the knowledge and experience of physicians who have shared their expertise on a variety of topics relevant to the health and safety of combat sports participants. It is not intended to be a complete in-depth analysis on each topic but is meant to provide a basis for further learning and the confidence to care for the unique participants of this sport.
This manual includes administrative issues as well as the specifics of the preparticipation evaluation, and the acute and non-acute neurological, orthopedic, ophthalmological, maxillofacial, dental, infectious disease and cardiovascular evaluation and treatment of the injured fighter. This will also serve as a reference guide for healthcare providers and officials involved in combat sports. It concentrates on sport-specific issues that need to be understood by those providing the medical care of combat sport participants. Injury prophylaxis and accelerated rehabilitation is the next level of achievement that will provide a better understanding of the risks associated with these sports.
Everyone involved in combat sports including physicians, emergency medical technicians, athletic trainers, physical therapists, cut-men, referees, commissioners, inspectors, judges, promoters, representatives of the boxing councils, members of all combat sports agencies as well as those in the media reporting on combat sports should understand the complexity of the care of the combat sports participants.
The ARP’s MANUAL OF COMBAT SPORTS MEDICINE has brought together some of the world’s brightest and most experienced experts in combative sports. The manuscript is a comprehensive and thorough review of all aspects of ringside medical care. Whether you are a ringside doctor, manager, cut-man, promoter, fighter (or simply someone who wants to learn and get involved in these sports), this resource in an invaluable tool for everyone to read and gain knowledge regarding safe sports practices. Dr. Michael Schwartz, ABC medical chairman, has highly recommended this book be a part of every educational meeting and utilized as a reference for training in all ringside safety courses.