Tampa Bay Spine & Sport specialists work as a team to diagnose and treat pain points thoroughly, utilizing sports medicine, interventional pain management, neurosurgery, physical therapy, chiropractic care, and PTSD counseling to address every aspect of a patient’s health and well-being.
Dr. Mathew Ragsdell is double board certified in Orthopaedic Sports Medicine and Orthopaedic Surgery, with 20 years of experience treating sports injuries. He did a fellowship in Sports Medicine and Shoulder Reconstruction at Beaumont Health in Michigan, and was a team doctor for the Detroit Lions.
Dr. Ragsdell specializes in knee and shoulder injuries, and he also treats wrist, elbow, and ankle injuries. He is dedicated to improving his patients’ overall wellness by listening to concerns and explaining conditions and treatment options ─ beginning with non-surgical alternatives and progressing to minimally invasive arthroscopic procedures.
To schedule a consultation with Dr. Ragsdell, please use our Appointment Request Form or call one of our Florida locations:
What is a Sports Injury?
A sports injury doesn’t always result from playing sports. Accidents and falls can cause sports injuries that can impact daily activities or interfere with your ability to participate in sports. Sports medicine doctors diagnose and treat sports and accident-related injuries that cause pain with activity.
The most common sports injuries include:
The anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) provides stability by connecting the thighbone and shin bone, and supporting the knee joint.
Common causes of ACL injuries:
- Slowing down suddenly and switching directions
- Pivoting on the knees with feet planted on the ground
- A high-impact blow to the knee
ACL injury symptoms :
- A loud pop, or popping sensation
- Severe pain and inability to continue an activity
- Rapid swelling
- Lost range of motion
- A feeling of instability, or giving way, while weight bearing
Dr. Ragsdell can repair or replace a torn ACL ligament with a tendon graft using a minimally invasive arthroscopic procedure.
Articular cartilage lines your joints and caps the ends of your bones. Once damaged, it will not heal on its own. Over time, as cartilage breaks down, bones stiffen and joints become inflamed and swollen.
Common causes of cartilage damage:
- Sudden twist at the knee
- High impact blow to the knee
Articular cartilage damage symptoms :
- Stiffness, pain and/or swelling
- A “catching” sensation, crackling, grating, or popping when bending or moving
- Inability to fully extend or bend the joint
Dr. Ragsdell may recommend an arthroscopic procedure to repair damaged cartilage.
Meniscus cartilage, which sits between the major bones around the knee, absorbs shock and transmits weight. A meniscus tear, which can happen when you forcefully rotate your knee, can make it impossible to play sports.
Meniscus tear symptoms :
- Pain around the knee joint
- Catching or locking
- Inability to fully extend or bend the knee joint
Ice, compression, and rest can help. If this doesn’t work, Dr. Ragsdell may perform a knee arthroscopy to remove or repair torn cartilage.
Rotator Cuff Tear
The rotator cuff includes muscles and tendons that hold and power your shoulder.
Common causes of rotator cuff tears:
- A sudden fall on an outstretched arm
- An abrupt, jerking motion while lifting something heavy
- A chronic tear that develops over time
- Degenerative tears are common for people who do repetitive shoulder movements, such as carpenters, mechanics, painters, and athletes who play baseball, softball, tennis or row
Rotator cuff tear symptoms:
- Painful difficulty raising your arm
- Popping or clicking sounds or sensations
- Shoulder pain that worsens at night or when at rest
If a rotator cuff injury does not respond to conservative treatments, Dr. Ragsdell may recommend an arthroscopic rotator cuff repair.
The AC joint connects the acromion (part of the shoulder blade) to the clavicle (collar bone) at the top of the shoulder. It helps maintain shoulder position, and is important for control, motion, and strength.
When the AC joint is injured, and the clavicle separates from the scapula (shoulder blade) it can become painful, unstable and affect shoulder function.
Common causes of AC shoulder separation:
- A sudden fall directly on the ‘point’ of the shoulder
- A direct blow during a contact sport
- Lifting weights or heaving objects
- AC joint arthritis can develop slowly from overuse
Separated shoulder symptoms:
- Pain at the top of the shoulder
- A noticeable bump
- Tightness and loss of motion
- Pain while lifting the arm up to the side or across the front of the body
Physical therapy, rest, and modified activities are the primary treatments for most AC joint injuries. An injection may help patients with AC joint arthritis. If the AC joint is very unstable, an arthroscopic surgical repair may be needed.
A SLAP tear (which stands for superior labrum anterior to posterior) is an injury to the labrum, which is the ring of cartilage that surrounds the shoulder joint socket.
Common causes of a SLAP (or labral) tear:
- A motor vehicle accident
- A fall onto an outstretched arm
- Forceful pulling
- Repetitive overhead sports that involve throwing or weightlifting
- Normal wear and tear
SLAP (labral) tear symptoms :
- A sensation of locking, popping, catching, or grinding
- Pain when moving or holding the shoulder in specific positions
- Pain lifting objects, especially overhead
- Decrease in shoulder strength and range of motion
- Pitchers may notice a decrease in throw velocity, or feel like they have a “dead arm”
SLAP tears may be repaired surgically. Conservative treatments include rest and physical therapy.
Conditions We Treat
Sports Injury Treatment in Tampa Bay
Tampa Bay Spine & Sport is an integrated practice with a primary focus on musculoskeletal rehabilitation to address back pain, neck pain, headaches, car accident and sports injuries. Dr. Scott Elliott, Dr. Mark Elliott, Dr. Christopher Schrock, Dr. Matthew Ragsdell, Dr. Tom Coulter and Licensed Mental Health Counselor Cara Dixon-Taliaferro work as a team to diagnose and treat pain points thoroughly, utilizing chiropractic care, physical therapy, interventional pain management, sports medicine, neurosurgery, and PTSD counseling. Our team collaborates with healthcare professionals from multiple disciplines to give patients a detailed picture of their health, physical limitations and range of potential treatments, and guide them on their path to pain-free living.
To schedule a consultation, please use our Appointment Request Form or call one of our two Florida locations: