Sports Medicine Division Female Athlete Program

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Contact the Sports Medicine Division

  • 617-355-3501
  • International: +1-617-355-5209
  • Schedule An Appointment:
    Monday-Friday 7:00am-8:00pm
  • Visit our Locations

The number of girls and young women in competitive sports has skyrocketed in the last few decades. At the same time, Boston Children’s Sports Medicine Division, the first pediatric sports medicine center in the United States, has grown and specialized to meet the unique needs of female athletes. Its Female Athlete Program is comprised of leaders in sports medicine. Our team cares for athletes of all ages—from elite professionals to eager novices—and stands out in the nation for its specialized care and research.

Our approach

The experts in our Female Athlete Program use a comprehensive approach to diagnosis, treatment and management to keep female athletes healthy and at the top of their game. Our caregivers assess the whole athlete and evaluate exercise habits, hormonal balance and nutritional needs, not just symptoms and injuries, to ensure peak performance.

We specialize in caring for patients with the Female Athlete Triad. This condition is characterized by low energy availability, menstrual dysfunction and decreased bone mineral density. (Female Athlete Triad may be referred to as Relative Energy Deficiency in Sport or RED-S. This more inclusive term recognizes that there may be other health and performance consequences from low energy availability and that men can also be affected.) Our clinical team helps young female athletes increase their energy availability, resume regular menstrual cycles, improve bone health and address their other health and performance concerns.

Our Leadership

Dr. Kathryn Ackerman

Kathryn (Kate) Ackerman, MD, MPH, co-director, sees athletes of all ages with musculoskeletal issues, general medical issues and endocrine problems, such as Female Athlete Triad/RED-S and other metabolic concerns. Her research involves the study of female athletes and the Female Athlete Triad/RED-S.

She is an assistant professor in medicine at Harvard Medical School, a former national team rower and a current team physician for the U.S. National Rowing Team and Community Rowing, Inc. She is also a team physician for various high schools and colleges in Boston, The Boston Ballet and the Boston Marathon.

Dr. Martha MurrayMartha Murray, MD, co-director, specializes in the care of knee injuries in athletes, and her research focuses on healing tissues inside joints, particularly the ACL and meniscus of the knee. Her work has been funded by grants from the National Institutes of Health and the National Football League.

She is an associate professor in orthopedic surgery at Harvard Medical School, a member of the Executive Committee of the international ACL study group and author of more than 60 publications regarding research on knee injuries.


In the news

Suffering on the sidelines, more athletes hit by ACL tears
The Boston Globe, October 5, 2014

Needham High soccer star, other girls coping with rise in ACL tears
The Boston Globe, October 5, 2014

Girls’ soccer players dealing with rise in ACL tears
The Boston Globe, October 5, 2014

Tips to prevent ACL tears
The Boston Globe, October 5, 2014

Read more news about female athletes.
The future of pediatrics will be forged by thinking differently, breaking paradigms and joining together in a shared vision of tackling the toughest challenges before us.”
- Sandra L. Fenwick, President and CEO

Boston Children's Hospital 300 Longwood Avenue, Boston, MA 02115 617-355-6000 | 800-355-7944