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About this Issue

Welcome to our November issue of the Clinical Journal of Sport Medicine, our last issue of 2014.

On reflection, it is difficult to believe how quickly the year has gone by. We hope that you will agree that this year has brought a wealth of interesting research to our readership, and we are pleased to be able to present you with a number of important articles this issue.

We kick off with an Editorial piece by our Critical Reviews section co-editor, Dr James Garrick, which complements this month's systematic review article by Stuber and colleagues on the subject of Core Stability Exercises for Low Back Pain in Athletes. Dr Garrick points out that, despite the widespread popularity of interventions to improve core stability, there is currently little scientific evidence to support the idea that improved core stability per se is efficacious as a general primary injury prevention strategy. The problem seems to be the lack of good quality research in this area, and Dr Garrick calls for researchers to continue to investigate the effectiveness of core stability interventions in high-quality studies.

The systematic review by Stuber and colleagues highlights the lack of quality and quantity of research available focusing on the effectiveness of core stability interventions for low back pain in athletes, leaving the reader with little to guide them when recommending core stability interventions for those with this problem. Despite the lack of available evidence, no doubt, until there is more robust data available, many of us will indeed continue to recommend core stability interventions for non-specific low back pain amongst athletes.

Also this issue, we bring you an important Joint Consensus Statement by the American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM) and the Fédération Internationale de Médecine du Sport (FIMS) on the Pre-participation Physical Evaluation (PPE). Issues examined in the Consensus Statement include the World-Wide heterogeneity of content in the PPE, the economic considerations in performing the PPE, different screening strategies including the role of ECG screening, and the human-centered design for the PPE. Future work by the group will concentrate on formulating a universally-accepted electronic PPE, which is something that CJSM would wholeheartedly welcome. We will be offering a linked podcast on the Position Statement in due course.

Original Research articles on offer this issue include a Randomized Controlled Trial of Low-Intensity Pulsed Ultrasound (LIPUS) in Lower Limb Bone Stress Injuries, and two articles relating to the use of salbutamol by athletes in terms of both its ergogenic effect and also the impact of ethnicity, gender, and dehydration on the urinary excretion of the substance.  

In addition, amongst other interesting topics, there is research on the Injury Profile of Mixed Martial Arts Competitors (together with a related Letter to the Editor), the Circadian Variation of Growth Factor Levels in Platelet-Rich Plasma, and the Effects of Neck Strength Training on Isometric neck Strength in Rugby Union Players.

Perhaps one or two of you have been asked about the risks of parachuting during pregnancy? If so, the article by Ebner and colleagues may help you to guide your patients to making a more informed decision should they decide that this is what they wish to do.

Finally, the Editorial published earlier this year by Craton and Leslie, a Critique on the 4th Consensus Statement on Concussion in Sport, generated much debate and strong opinion from our readership, and this issue we publish three Letters to the Editor in response to the Editorial together with a reply letter from the authors.  

As ever, keep an eye on our CJSM Blog which is available at where our Emerging Media Editor, Dr James MacDonald, keeps us up-to-date on a wide variety of subjects from the World of Sport and Exercise Medicine, and don't forget to follow us on Twitter (@cjsmonline) and Facebook.

Finally, don't miss out on our growing collection of podcasts which are available under the 'Media' tab of the homepage on our website. These are a great way to keep up-to-date with current thinking on relevant subjects from conversations with experts in their fields and I urge you to check them out.

Until next time, Best Wishes,  

Christopher Hughes MBBS MSc

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