URBANA – Maybe you tried a new sport or played a little too hard, and now you're paying with aches and pains.
Do you go to the doctor, or wait and hope the pain goes away?
Starting Monday, Provena Covenant Medical Center will remove at least one of the pains – the one you feel in your wallet when you pay a professional to take a look at your injury.
Each Monday, Wednesday and Friday, from 7 to 10 a.m., the hospital will offer free injury evaluation clinics for youths and adults on the fourth floor of Covenant Medical Center, in Suite 4460.
Walk-in evaluations are available, or people can call ahead for an appointment. The number is 1-800-245-6697.
Bryce Compton, a certified athletic trainer with Provena, will conduct the exams.
Compton said the clinics are timed so kids and adults can get in to see someone before school or work.
While he's not a doctor, he can let patients know if they need to see one. Compton said he will answer patients' questions, conduct various muscle and range-of-motion testing and assess their injuries.
If it's a minor injury, he'll send the patient along with suggestions for care and exercise to avoid getting hurt again, he said.
If it's more serious, he'll suggest an X-ray and/or refer the patient to a sports medicine doctor. When it's possible, for patients wishing to see Provena's sports medicine physician, Dr. Chris Covington, same-day appointments will be arranged, he added.
Patients he advises on home remedies and exercise are welcome to return for a free follow-up evaluation during one of the free clinic times, Compton said. There is a charge, however, to see the physician.
Oftentimes people get hurt and hope their sore shoulder, lower back pain or aching feet or legs just get better with time because they don't want to pay someone to evaluate the problem, Compton said.
But taking care of an injury right away can keep it from getting worse, and leave you able to get back out there and play again without pain, he said.