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Expert opinion and controversies in musculoskeletal and sports medicine: Stingers


Standaert, C. J., & Herring, S. A



Publication Info:

Archives of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, 90:402-406


Stingers are a common injury in contact sports and are characterized by acute lancinating pain in 1 upper extremity with or without associated weakness and neck pain. Appropriate on-field evaluation is necessary to identify the extent of injury and rule out structural injuries to the head, spine, or shoulder girdle. Although athletes can often return to play after a single acute event that resolves rapidly, those who have recurrent events, persisting pain, or strength deficits require a thorough diagnostic evaluation before return-to-play decisions can be made. In some circumstances, players sustaining a single stinger or multiple recurrent stingers may be permanently removed from participation in collision or contact sports.

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