IT Band Injury Leads to Success Thanks to Nationwide Children’s Staff

Last year, I suffered from a devastating injury. Before my injury, I had just placed fourth in 2 mile at the state track meet as a junior and had high hopes for my last high school cross country season. I trained relentlessly over the summer, but during the season, my left IT band, specifically in my quad, started bothering me. I continued running and pushing myself. This only made my condition worse, as the pain did not subside and I finished forty-something place at the Cross Country State meet.

I took the next two weeks off of running and swam instead. I met with my track coach and athletic trainer, Gail Swisher, who helped me write a training plan to prepare for track season. Gail referred me to the Nationwide Children’s Sports Medicine center in Westerville. During my appointment with Dr. Amy Valasek, she informed me that I could have a stress fracture, so I scheduled an MRI.

A couple of weeks later, I discovered from my MRI that I did not have a stress fracture, but my left IT band was extremely inflamed. Dr. Valasek told me that the only way to heal my inflammation would be through physical therapy.

Twice a week for three months, I met with Alex Reid at Nationwide Children’s Hospital for physical therapy, working on exercises to strengthen my IT band. Alex gave me several exercises and stretches to do at home twice a day. I spent at least an hour on exercises every day and was forced to swim almost every day to take a break from running. I felt as if running would never feel normal again and my hip would always hurt.

Slowly, my conditions improved. Alex helped me progress back to running, and five weeks later, I was up to 20 miles per week. Alex was beyond helpful, keeping me encouraged and staying positive even when she knew I was anxious to return to my normal self. She made coming to physical therapy so often so much better and her investment and efforts to improve my hip are one of the reasons why I am so appreciative of the Nationwide Children’s program.

By the end of my progression plan back to running and when I was up to running 30 miles a week pain-free, I had finally graduated from physical therapy! Then, by the beginning of track season, I was almost up to 40 miles a week and was feeling back to my normal self.

My IT band injury and the recovery process was definitely a great time of adversity in my life, but I used this challenge to fuel my desire to improve. I would also like to give a huge thank you to everyone at Nationwide who helped me through this journey: Gail Swisher, Kayleigh Lowery, Alex Reid, and Dr. Valasek.

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  • Name: Molly F.Molly Fagin
  • Condition(s): Tendonitis
  • Age at Treatment: 17
  • Age Today: 09/29/200019 Years

Last year, I suffered from a devastating injury. Before my injury, I had just placed fourth in 2 mile at the state track meet as a junior and had high hopes for my last high school cross country season. I trained relentlessly over the summer, but during the season, my left IT band, specifically in my quad, started bothering me. I continued running and pushing myself. This only made my condition worse, as the pain did not subside and I finished forty-something place at the Cross Country State meet.

I took the next two weeks off of running and swam instead. I met with my track coach and athletic trainer, Gail Swisher, who helped me write a training plan to prepare for track season. Gail referred me to the Nationwide Children’s Sports Medicine center in Westerville. During my appointment with Dr. Amy Valasek, she informed me that I could have a stress fracture, so I scheduled an MRI.

A couple of weeks later, I discovered from my MRI that I did not have a stress fracture, but my left IT band was extremely inflamed. Dr. Valasek told me that the only way to heal my inflammation would be through physical therapy.

Twice a week for three months, I met with Alex Reid at Nationwide Children’s Hospital for physical therapy, working on exercises to strengthen my IT band. Alex gave me several exercises and stretches to do at home twice a day. I spent at least an hour on exercises every day and was forced to swim almost every day to take a break from running. I felt as if running would never feel normal again and my hip would always hurt.

Slowly, my conditions improved. Alex helped me progress back to running, and five weeks later, I was up to 20 miles per week. Alex was beyond helpful, keeping me encouraged and staying positive even when she knew I was anxious to return to my normal self. She made coming to physical therapy so often so much better and her investment and efforts to improve my hip are one of the reasons why I am so appreciative of the Nationwide Children’s program.

By the end of my progression plan back to running and when I was up to running 30 miles a week pain-free, I had finally graduated from physical therapy! Then, by the beginning of track season, I was almost up to 40 miles a week and was feeling back to my normal self.

My IT band injury and the recovery process was definitely a great time of adversity in my life, but I used this challenge to fuel my desire to improve. I would also like to give a huge thank you to everyone at Nationwide who helped me through this journey: Gail Swisher, Kayleigh Lowery, Alex Reid, and Dr. Valasek.

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