William Brown, MD

Second Trip to Vietnam

I just returned from a second trip to Vietnam. Nguyen Van Len is doing well and is ready to play for the National Team. All the other athletes are doing well. I have been invited to return in October. At that time I have been asked to give a lectures on sports hernias for local surgeons and at the Medical School.

Vietnamese Star Athlete Benefits From Sports Hernia Surgery

I was invited to Vietnam in early June by the National Soccer Team to care for their star athlete Nguyen Van Len. He needed surgery but could not get a visa to the United States. The operation was performed on June 10, 2010. He has done very well and is already back in rehab and starting to play soccer.

After surgery, there was a news conference at which all the major Vietnamese television stations were present. The operation itself was televised on the nightly news.

While in Vietnam I also operated on six other Vietnamese athletes, including Nguyen Thi Nu their star 400m sprinter. The local newspaper called me a neurosurgeon (I am a general surgeon); I need to work on my Vietnamese. I have been invited to return to Vietnam in August.

I look forward to caring for more of the Vietnamese athletes. And to share my surgical knowledge.

How to make a diagnosis?

To make the diagnosis of a sports hernia I rely mainly on the history that the patient gives to me and a careful physical examination. Occasionally I order an MRI to help with the diagnosis. In Europe and Australia, ultrasound is used extensively to help make the diagnosis of a sports hernia, but I truly believe that a careful physical exam is the best diagnostic test.

Other Experts

The most common question I am asked, is who are the other experts in the diagnosis and repair of sports hernias? The other surgeons with a extensive experience with sports hernias are Dr Ulrike Muschaweck who is based in Munich Germany, Dr. William Meyers at Drexel University, Dr Jerry Gilmore in London.

What is Osteitis Pubis?

The two halves of the pelvic bone join anteriorly at the symphysis pubis. A sports hernia is thought to be the result of poorly coordinated contraction of the abdominal oblique muscles and the adductor muscles.

This can lead to stress across the symphysis pubis. This results in chronic inflammation and pain. This inflammation and pain is called osteitis pubis. Repair of a sports hernia often allow osteitis pubis to heal by relieving this stress.