School of Medicine physicians, students to provide medical assistance at 2009 Reno Rodeo

Sporting environment provides learning opportunity

RENO, Nev. — Rodeo competitors know it's not a question of if you'll get hurt, but rather a question of when and how badly. Cowboys and cowgirls simply accept injuries as part of their sport.

Luckily, competitors of the 2009 Reno Rodeo have a team of medical professionals to see to their injuries if they get hurt during competition.

Trainers from Justin Sports Medicine provide the bulk of services for competitors while REMSA provides emergency transport for both competitors and fans. School of Medicine physicians and students along with medical volunteers from the Reno Rodeo Association will provide medical assistance and expertise to both competitors and spectators as needed at the June 18-27 event.

"This is an educational opportunity for our students to learn how to interact with emergency medical teams and what is potentially involved with medical help in a large crowd setting," said Daniel Spogen, M.D., chair of the School of Medicine's family and community medicine department in Reno.

The Reno Rodeo medical team embodies a wide variety of medical expertise and backgrounds-from physical therapists and sports trainers to physicians and emergency medical technicians. The team also treats a wide variety of injuries ranging from competitors' sprained ankles and broken fingers to broken jaws and torn skin. Injuries in the grandstands and carnival range from heat exhaustion and cardiac arrest to broken bones.

In addition to Spogen, Brad Lee, M.D., an adjunct clinical professor of internal medicine at the School of Medicine, and Carol Scott, M.D., assistant director of the University Student Health Center, also provide medical assistance at the rodeo as well as work with student volunteers.

"We treat them and recommend they rest and not participate but most if not all of them refuse and continue to participate," said Scott. "When you treat competitors at the rodeo, you're treating their injuries but also helping them prepare to go back into the arena. They are some of the most physically and mentally tough athletes we treat."

Media Contacts

Julie Ardito, APR
Senior Director, Advancement and Engagement
Office: (775) 784-6006

Tessa Bowen, MPA
Communications Manager, Advancement and Engagement
Office: (775) 682-9254

The University of Nevada, Reno School of Medicine, Nevada's first public medical school, is a community-based, research-intensive medical school with a statewide vision for a healthy Nevada. Established in 1969, UNR Med is improving the health and well-being of all Nevadans and their communities through excellence in student education, postgraduate training and clinical care, research with local, national and global impact and a culture of diversity and inclusion.