DETROIT (WWJ) – Soccer fans are on the edge of their seats for the final match up in World Cup play. Some experts say, although interest in the sport may be at its highest point in the US, so are the risks for injury.

Beaumont Orthopedic surgeon Dr. Joseph Guettler says as children begin the sport earlier, the odds for serious injury rises, especially for girls.

“Because of the way young females are made, because of the strength ratios, because of other factors which could include hormonal influences they are at a greatly increased risk for blowing out their knees, and when I say blown out, I mean ACL tears,” said Dr. Guettler.

He says concussions related to sports injuries are on the rise.

“Concussions are happening more, they are being diagnosed more, and it is happening mainly because youngsters are being pushed younger and harder,” he said.

Guettler says parents and coaches can help keep young players safe by resisting the pressure to keep them playing a single sport year-round, and by listening to kids when they complain about lingering aches and pains, which could be a sign of growth plate damage.


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