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1. The use of therapeutic medications for soft-tissue injuries in sports medicine

Justin A Paoloni and John W Orchard
Med J Aust 2005; 183 (7): 384-388.
Published online: 3 October 2005

Soft-tissue injuries are injuries to skin, fascia, ligament, muscle, and tendon. Currently, many therapeutic medications are commonly used in the management of soft-tissue injuries, including: analgesics, non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), corticosteroids, prolotherapy sclerosant agents, aprotinin, glyceryl trinitrate, botulinum toxin, and glucosamine. Despite their regular use for soft-tissue injury, few medications have strong evidence of a consistent therapeutic effect. In this article, we review the proposed mechanisms of action, side effects, and the evidence base (based on National Health and Medical Research Council levels of evidence1) for common soft-tissue injury treatments. We also suggest appropriate circumstances for using therapeutic medications, with emphasis on the Hippocratic principle of primum non nocere (first do no harm).

  • Justin A Paoloni1
  • John W Orchard2

  • University of New South Wales, Sydney, NSW.

Correspondence: 

Competing interests:

None identified.

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