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Dr. Shelden Martin on Kyrie Irving’s Injury

Sports fans stay up-to-date on their favorite team or player while they rally around them toward a victory! The most disheartening news to hear while cheering on your team, is when a key player must sit out due to injury. During a game, NBA’s Brooklyn Nets’ star guard, Kyrie Irving, sustained a shoulder injury which is speculated to be a shoulder impingement or thoracic bursitis, and will keep him off the court for a little while.

Dr. Shelden Martin, team physician for the Arizona Cardinals, Diamondbacks and Rattlers, has experience with treating professional athletes. Dr. Martin offers his insight to the differences in the injuries along with treatment options:

“Shoulder impingement and scapulothoracic bursitis are slightly different problems, though both affect the shoulder girdle. Impingement or subacromial impingement, the most common type of impingement in the shoulder, though there are other types, is the most common. Most often seen in older patients, but when seen in young athletes is many times secondary to other problems, such as stiffness or motion problems from primary frozen shoulder or secondary stiffness after surgery. This can be problematic in overhead and throwing athletes playing sports such as baseball, volleyball, and gymnastics. It is often treated non-surgically with physical therapy, NDAIDs, and or cortisone injections. Less commonly it is treated with arthroscopic surgical decompression in young athletes.

Scapulothoracic bursitis is commonly seen in overhead athletes and results from poor scapular motion and mechanics or from repetitive use causing mechanical irritation of the bursa deep to and around the scapula. It is treated nonsurgically with NSAIDs, physical therapy and sometimes trigger point injections. This is a condition that is rarely ever treated surgically.”

Learn more about the Irving’s injury details here:

Call 602.648.5444 to schedule an appointment with Dr. Shelden Martin today!

Platelet-Rich Plasma (PRP) Therapy

Many active individuals, ranging from weekend warrior types who enjoy exercise and recreational sports in their spare time to professional athletes to those with osteoarthritis, suffer pain and injuries that keep them from performing at their best and sometimes from performing at all.

Surgery to treat joint, tendon and ligament injuries like tendonitis and MCL or ACL tears can keep athletes out of the game for weeks at a time due to long recovery times and possible complications such as infection from the procedure.

Platelet-rich plasma therapy procedures are an alternative option to surgery that are minimally invasive, affordable, quick and can greatly reduce pain and recovery time for athletes.

Typically, when a person is injured, the body sends blood to the site to begin the healing process. Blood platelets are full of proteins and other elements that help mend injuries. However, in some more ligamentous locations like the knee, shoulder and elbow, blood doesn’t usually travel to that area as much when injury occurs.

Platelet-rich plasma procedures mimic the body’s response to injuries by creating a catalyst for a person’s natural healing response and helps rebuild tendons and cartilage. It works by taking blood from the injured athlete, filtering it in a centrifuge that spins at high speeds to separate red blood cells from platelets and injecting that blood into the injured area.

This method of healing is perceived to be most effective for mild injuries to the everyday active individual but has also decreased rehabilitation and recovery time for professional athletes like Hines Ward and Troy Polamalu, both Pittsburgh Steelers football players, who each had platelet-rich plasma procedure therapy that reduced their combined injury times by weeks.

Using the athlete’s own blood is speedy and safe. In total, platelet-rich plasma procedures take about an hour and virtually eliminate the possibility for infection or allergic reaction. They are cheaper than traditional surgical treatment and have the potential to do away with several types of surgery that can be costly and invasive.

Whether it’s a sports related injury or pain due to arthritis, platelet-rich procedures are promising and should be considered by patients for non-surgical treatment.

Valley athletes doing on-field exercises during ACL Injury Prevention Clinic

Student-athletes from around the Valley got a chance to step on the Arizona Rattlers football field during the fourth annual ACL Injury Prevention Clinic at Talking Stick Resort Arena.

The clinic is a mixture of a classroom style lecture and on-field exercises put on by OrthoArizona, Spooner Physical Therapy and the Rattlers.

Check out some of the exercises the Spooner Physical Therapy team put the student-athletes through during their portion of the presentation.

A new procedure on the horizon for ACL injuries?

When an athlete hears the words they have a torn ACL, there is a lot of uncertainty that runs through their mind. How soon can it be fixed? When can I get back to my sport?

These are just a few of the questions I’m asked when treating this injury.

Every year more than 200,000 ACL injuries are reported. The majority of injuries happen playing soccer, basketball and football.

Surgery and rehab are involved with recovery time lasting anywhere from six months to a year. While every patient is different when it comes to getting better, understanding that this type of injury takes time to heal is important.

The traditional surgery usually involves replacing the injured ligament with a graft or replacement tissue to restore the patient’s normal anatomy. 

There is a new study being looked at that might change the way ACL tears are treated.

I found a story on The Undefeated ( talking about a new procedure using a bridge to help the ACL ends heal back together without doing a reconstruction.

According to the story, the first human trial looked at 10 patients getting the traditional ACL reconstruction surgery and another 10 receiving what is called the Murray’s bridge-Enhanced ACL Repair (BEAR) procedure.

The procedure, created by Dr. Martha Murray, found that three months after surgery, the BEAR participants in the study all had ACLs that were healing and the flexibility was close to their healthy knee.

I think the Murray’s bridge-Enhanced ACL Repair (BEAR) procedure is an interesting concept.  While more studies will be needed to validate this treatment, there is a lot of potential.

Our goal as doctors is to help get athletes back to their sport safely. If there is a potential new treatment that could speed the return to high-level athletics sooner than is currently possible after traditional ACL reconstruction surgery, I’m definitely interested in seeing what this procedure can do long term.

The study will be published in the Orthopaedic Journal of Sports Medicine next month.

For more information on ACL injuries and prevention please contact me at

Student Athletes Get Pro-Level Care

ABC15 came out to talk to OrthoArizona Dr. Shelden Martin about the new sports medicine program in the Chandler Unified School District.

The program will give student-athletes services that they would see playing at the collegiate level and tools to decrease injuries by providing education and prevention methods.

Arizona Woman Back in Action Thanks to her Reverse Total Shoulder Replacement Procedure

Charlene Linsalata loves being active. This includes doing things around the house and playing golf, but that wasn’t the case nearly two years ago.

“I was running and I didn’t clear the step,” Linsalata said. “I landed on the floor, on my shoulder, but I got right up because it didn’t really hurt.”

Linsalata quickly realized her left shoulder was in bad shape when she couldn’t lift her arm the next day. She headed to OrthoArizona where she met Dr. Shelden Martin.

“In comes this young man, I was scared to death and he said what he felt needed to be done,” Linsalata said.

She fractured her shoulder and Martin suggested she have a reverse total shoulder replacement. Candidates for this procedure are usually elderly patients.

“With this newer technology in the reverse shoulder, it’s still somewhat newer technology since it was FDA approved in 2004,” Martin said. “We’re initially doing it for arthritis type problems with bad rotator cuffs and we’re now expanding the indications for this procedure to include fractures.”

A reverse total shoulder replacement differs from a traditional replacement by switching the ball and socket.

The procedure works by screwing a smooth metal bone into the socket bone, a long metal stem is placed down the humerus and then a plastic socket is secured on top of the stem.

This allows for the deltoid muscle to raise the arm instead of the rotator cuff.

“In a fracture setting like Charlene had, we will try to reconstruct the boney tuberosity pieces around the upper portion of that stem and try to heal those components to the stem itself,” Martin said.

A patient will typically stay in the hospital one night, wear a sling for six weeks and then start physical therapy focusing on range of motion and strength.

“By three months, most patients have made major improvements and are probably 80 percent of the way, although they will still make improvements up to six months or even a year after surgery,” Martin said.

Linsalata credits her successful recovery to doing what Martin and her physical therapist told her to do to get the left shoulder working again.

“You have to do it the right way, the whole way,” Linsalata said. “I’m active and in a way, I’ve had no restrictions.”

“It’s probably one of the most game changing procedures we have in shoulder surgeries for decades and so for the right patient, it’s a great procedure,” Martin said.

A reverse total shoulder replacement can also be used to treat patients who have had previous rotator cuff surgeries and shoulder replacement surgeries that were not successful.

To see if you’re a candidate for this procedure, visit

Students learning how to treat injured athletes on the high school sports field

“We’re bringing together the student athletic trainers, the head school athletic trainers, Dignity Health athletic trainers, team physicians and emergency medical technicians, who would potentially take care of a high school athlete that is injured on the field of play,” said Dr. Matt Hansen, OrthoArizona sports medicine specialist.

All of these medical professionals and students are taking part in the second annual Field to Emergency Room event at Hamilton High School in Chandler.

They’re running through drills on how to work together when a student-athlete has injured his or her spine or other emergency situations on the sports field in the Gilbert Public Schools and the Chandler Unified School District.

“You could potentially take someone who has a bad injury and make it worse if we don’t treat them correctly,” Hansen said.

Hansen is the medical director of the sports medicine program in both school districts.

The program kicked off in Gilbert first and now Chandler this fall.

“Our sports medicine program between Dignity Health and OrthoArizona began about three years ago,” Hansen said. “We wanted to raise the level of care to something similar that you would have at a collegiate level.”

OrthoArizona physicians and Dignity Health athletic trainers work with the high school medical staff to make sure each student-athlete is given the best possible care. This includes hosting educational events like this one, providing sports physicals, being on the field during games and holding special office hours for student-athletes.

“It’s good for them to get hands on, so they understand the demands that we’re under when caring for that athlete,” Gary Cohen said. Cohen is with Dignity Health and is the head athletic trainer at Casteel High School in Chandler.

He likes the partnership with the orthopedic physicians and working with the student-athletes.

“They love having us on the sidelines and being able to identify things that might not be an injury necessarily, but we’re identifying that predisposed risk,” Cohen said.

“We’re getting an athletic trainer that is trained in all the latest techniques and protocols and putting them into the schools, so that all of these athletes at these schools have access to that trainer and those trainers are directing the athletes who are injured into our offices,” said Dr. Shelden Martin, OrthoArizona sports medicine specialist.

Martin is overseeing the Chandler sports medicine program. He believes the sports program they have put in place does much more than treat student-athletes’ injuries.

“Our job goes beyond fixing their injury surgically,” Martin said. “It’s counseling and coaching them, so to speak, and really setting their expectations and what to expect. You develop a bond in that relationship and that’s what it’s all about for us as the orthopedic surgeons.”

Student-athletes in Chandler getting new sports medicine services

“The job as a certified athletic trainer has changed tremendously since I started,” said Lance Michel, head athletic trainer at Hamilton High School in Chandler.

Michel has been at the high school for 17 years. He helps student-athletes get back to their sport after suffering an injury.

“They’re all working hard and they want to go out and compete and have fun,” Michel said.

Michel will be getting help this year from OrthoArizona and Dignity Health.

The two groups are providing sports medicine services at the five high schools and five junior high schools in the Chandler Unified School District.

OrthoArizona and Dignity Health have a similar program in the Gilbert Public Schools.

“The whole idea behind this program is elevating that level of care to the same level that we deliver to Division I universities or even the professional teams,” said Dr. Shelden Martin, OrthoArizona sports medicine specialist.

Martin will lead the sports medicine program team. He and four other physicians will be assigned to Hamilton, Basha, Casteel, Chandler and Perry high schools. Dignity Health will provide the athletic trainers.

“It involves not just the team physicians on the sidelines with the athletic trainer for all of the games, but it also involves a lot of education,” Martin said.

Education, sports physicals and prevention methods are just a few of the services they will offer.

“A lot of times these patients or athletes will have an injury and their parents don’t necessarily know where to take them,” Martin said. “Maybe they’re in a sport like cross country or volleyball that doesn’t necessarily have the athletic trainer at that game or practice and the injury doesn’t get recognized until the athlete gets home and their parents notice they’re limping.

“This program can help prevent that from happening,” Martin continued.

This includes offering a walk-in injury clinic at a new OrthoArizona location near the Dignity Health Chandler Regional Medical Center.

“This walk-in injury clinic from 7 to 8 a.m. every day, MondayFriday, is perfect for that scenario because now those parents will know that there is a place they can take them where they will be getting appropriate diagnosis and treatment by orthopedic surgeons,” Martin said.

These are sports medicine services that can be a game changer.

“It’s great to have that accessibility because, once again, sports don’t stop,” Michel said.

“It’s 100 mph full throttle all the time and they [OrthoArizona and Dignity Health] understand the commitment that it takes and that’s what I like about it.

“From what I can see, we’re going to have a great relationship,” Michel said.

Soccer player coming back strong after ACL injury

“Raph Colasito has been spending a lot of time at the Foothills Sports Medicine Gilbert Mesa location.

He and owner/treating physical therapist Matt MidKiff have been working on strengthening his right knee.

“We did a treatment called augmented soft tissue mobilization,” Midkiff said. “[This is] a tool-assisted method with what are called wash out tools and that allows us to break up scar tissue.”

Colasito tore his ACL during a tournament with his club team SC Del Sol in February.

“Beginning of the second half, I went to tackle at midfield and as I was driving and getting away from the person I wanted from, him and his teammate sandwiched me and one of the players came across my knee and then my knee came out and as I was falling I heard three pops,” Colasito said.

“He presented with me a little bit late and so he already had a little bit of stiffness and so we did what is called pre-rehab and we worked on his range of motion before surgery,” said OrthoArizona sports medicine specialist Dr. Shelden Martin. “It’s always better to have good range of motion, good quadriceps control and normal gait before go in and do an ACL reconstruction.”

Martin did Colasito’s surgery in April.

“A lot of times it’s an issue of educating these patients and athletes about the recovery period and understanding this is kind of a year out of their life,” Martin said.

The doctor and Midkiff have been working together to help Colasito recover from his injury.

“The first six weeks after surgery are really just controlling swelling and getting range of motion back,” Martin said. “After that it’s really working on getting that quad muscle to start and getting back its strength and its bulk and that takes many months.

“When you get to three months is when we start progressing to running and four months and beyond is more sports-specific activities like jumping, cutting, twisting, pivoting and training in three planes of front to back, side to side, up and down,” Martin continued.

The 18-year-old is more than four months out from his surgery.

“Once they get passed that four-month time frame, it’s kind of as strong as it will be,” Midkiff said. “The bone is healed around the grafts and ultimately we can start to challenge the knee with difficult and more lateral and rotational patterns.”

Colasito is working hard to not only get back to the sport that has been part of his life since he was 3 years old, he wants the opportunity to try out for the Division I men’s soccer team at Grand Canyon University in the spring.

He will be a freshman in the fall.

“Before this I wanted to rush into things, but with all the people who I know that have torn their ACL, they said take your time and that’s helped me with my patience a lot,” Colasito said.

Patience and a never-give-up attitude can go a long way.

“I hope when they see this that it pushes them to stay focused and there is always a way,” Colasito said.

Phoenix Orthopedic Surgeon Dr. Shelden Martin Announces Office Move to Two New Valley Locations

PHOENIX – Dr. Shelden Martin, a leading orthopedic surgeon with OrthoArizona – Arizona Orthopaedic Associates, has announced the relocation of his office to Phoenix and Mesa effective March 17.

Dr. Martin is a board certified orthopedic surgeon with extensive training and experience in orthopedic and sports injuries. He has worked with professional, collegiate and high school athletics teams and his research has been recognized both nationally and internationally.Dr. Shelden Martin Flier (FINAL)

His office will move to OrthoArizona – Arizona Orthopaedic Associates’s Phoenix office as one of two convenient locations for Valley residents.

“The two new locations will give patients an even better experience with added convenience,” Dr. Martin said. “The move will allow us to provide the same specialized care, now with two accessible locations across the Valley.”

The Phoenix location will be near the southwest intersection of Loop 202 and SR 143, at 3033 N 44th St, Ste 100, Phoenix, AZ 85018,

The East Valley office in Mesa will be located at 3130 E. Baseline Rd. Suite 101, Mesa, AZ 85204, a mile south of U.S. 60.

Patients and professionals continuously praise Dr. Martin’s expertise and attentiveness, as well as his innovative and personalized approach to each individual patient’s treatment plan. Patient James McKelvy, who received a shoulder replacement from Dr. Martin in 2012, was pleased with the care and knowledge Dr. Martin delivered throughout the process, as well as the success of his procedure.

“I really do have confidence in Dr. Martin’s abilities,” McKelvy said. “He knows what he’s doing. He fully informed me of what outcomes I should anticipate, and he was very forthright.”

Dr. Martin, and the staff at OrthoArizona – Arizona Orthopaedic Associates, can handle any orthopedic injury and offer minimally invasive options for athletes and non-athletes. Dr. Martin specializes in complex arthroscopic surgery, including ligament reconstruction, cartilage transplants, shoulder and elbow joint replacements, and reverse shoulder replacements.

To schedule an appointment or consultation, call (480) 750-0303.

For more information on OrthoArizona – Arizona Orthopaedic Associates, please call (480) 750-0303 or visit Find out more about Arizona Orthopaedic Associates on Facebook at and Twitter at

Learn more about Dr. Martin on his website and follow him on Facebook at and Twitter at