Background: Pelvic-femoral injuries are a common problem in football (soccer) players. However, the risk factors for these injuries are unclear. Our knowledge of spinal-pelvic sagittal balance has increased considerably over the past few years, notably as a result of new radiographic techniques such the EOS radiographic imaging system.
Purpose: To investigate the link between spinal-pelvic sagittal balance on EOS imaging and the incidence of pelvic-femoral injuries.
Study design: Cohort study; Level of evidence, 2.
Methods: Players in a League 1 professional soccer team were observed for 5 consecutive seasons. All players included in the study underwent EOS radiographic imaging. All acute and microtraumatic injuries to the pelvic-femoral complex were recorded prospectively: hamstrings, psoas, quadriceps, adductors, obturators, and pubic symphysis. We analyzed the relationship between injury incidence and key radiographic parameters involved in pelvic balance.
Results: A total of 61 players were included (mean age, 24.5 years; n = 149 injuries; mean pelvic tilt, 9.08° ± 5.6°). A significant link was observed between the incidence of pelvic-femoral injuries and pelvic tilt (P = .02). A significant link was also observed between the incidence of acute pelvic-femoral injuries and pelvic tilt (P = .05). In both cases, a high pelvic tilt was associated with a low incidence of injuries.
Conclusion: In professional soccer players, a low pelvic tilt was associated with a high incidence of all pelvic-femoral injuries as well as acute pelvic-femoral injuries. These results could lead to new preventive methods for these musculotendinous injuries through physical therapy.
Keywords: EOS imaging; acute injury; adductors; hamstrings; obturators; pelvic tilt; pelvic-femoral injury; quadriceps; spinal-pelvic sagittal balance.
© The Author(s) 2020.
Conflict of interest statement
The authors declared that there are no conflicts of interest in the authorship and publication of this contribution. AOSSM checks author disclosures against the Open Payments Database (OPD). AOSSM has not conducted an independent investigation on the OPD and disclaims any liability or responsibility relating thereto.
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