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Listening Time — 27:39

For female athletes, intense exercise and training can lead to a trio of related problems. Together they are known as the female athlete triad, and include:

  • Menstrual dysfunction.
  • Reduced bone density.
  • Energy deficiency related to insufficient nutrition. 

Symptoms of the triad can range from mild to severe. Some athletes may avoid discussing abnormal periods, eating habits, and related body image concerns. As a result, it often goes unrecognized. If untreated, the condition can have immediate and lasting effects. 

Dr. Kelly Waicus, MD, and physical therapist Laura Stanley, PT, DPT, discuss the condition. How can you identify female athlete triad? They answer that question and discuss treatment and how to prevent it.

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Read more about Female Athlete Triad.

Kelly Waicus

Kelly Waicus, MD, is the primary physician for several University of North Carolina sports teams. Kelly Waicus, MD, is the primary physician for several University of North Carolina sports teams. They include men's and women's swim and dive, lacrosse, fencing, and cheerleading and women's tennis, golf, and volleyball. She completed a pediatric residency at Children's Hospital in Cincinnati and a sports medicine fellowship at UNC. Dr. Waicus is board certified in pediatrics and has a certificate of qualification in sports medicine.

Laura Stanley

Laura Stanley PT, DPT, is a board-certified clinical specialist in sports physical therapy. She practices at Proaxis Therapy in North Carolina and is a former college athlete. Laura's clinical interests include adolescent sports medicine and post-operative knee and shoulder rehab. She has a passion for working with young athletes. She focuses on injury prevention, functional and sport-specific rehab, and long-term health and well-being.

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