How To Take Care of Shin Splints

How To Take Care of Shin Splints Blog

Shin splints is the term that is used to explain a pain that comes from the lower leg. A splint will either be on the inside or the outside of a person’s shin bone. Typically, a shin splint pain starts as a slight ache that the patient can’t pinpoint. It can usually be felt along the area where the muscle attaches itself to the bone.

A Shin splint may be caused by:

  • Starting too vigorous of an exercise program instead of starting off slow. Always start a new exercise program off slowly and get enough rest between workouts. High impact aerobics can also cause a shin splint.
  • Quickly increasing how intense or long your workouts are. When the muscles of the leg are continuously being overused, you become a prime candidate for getting this condition.
  • Not having supportive shoes. You need anatomical support in your shoes in order to prevent a shin splint. The surfaces on which you exercise may also cause a shins splint, so choosing to exercise on an all-purpose track or in the grass is optimal.

How to Ease Shin Splint Pain

    1. The first step to easing this pain is “active rest”. It is important that you don’t completely stop your conditioning activities and then start up at the same level of intensity in a few weeks, as this will aggravate the pain over and over again. Instead, choose lower-impact exercises, such as swimming, a stationary bicycle, or elliptical machine.
    2. The use of ice on your shin splints will also help, especially in the beginning when the pain is at its worst. If your muscles are also red and swollen, ice will certainly help. Take some ice cubes and wrap them in a small towel. Rub the swollen spot for at least 10 to 15 minutes to get relief. Never directly apply ice to the area, as this can cause burns or frostbite. Repeat every few hours.
    3. Always give your muscles an adequate amount of stretching time with. You may find the following stretches to be helpful.

 

You’ll want to be patient when it comes to taking care of your shin splints, as it can take weeks or even months for your body to go back to normal. Don’t try to work through the pain, as you will only make the situation worse. If you do not feel as though your pain is improving after a few weeks, do not hesitate to seek the advice of your family physician. He or she will guide you in the next best possible course of action.

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In this instance, an athlete was originally diagnosed with minor quadriceps muscle strain and was treated for four weeks, with unsatisfactory results. When he came to our clinic, the muscle was not healing, and the patients’ muscle tissue had already begun to atrophy.

Upon examination using MSUS, we discovered that he had a full muscle thickness tear that had been overlooked by his previous provider. To mitigate damage and promote healing, surgery should have been performed immediately after the injury occurred. Because of misdiagnosis and inappropriate treatment, the patient now has permanent damage that cannot be corrected.

The most important advantage of Ultrasound over MRI imaging is its ability to zero in on the symptomatic region and obtain imaging, with active participation and feedback from the patient. Using dynamic MSUS, we can see what happens when patients contract their muscles, something that cannot be done with MRI. From a diagnostic perspective, this interaction is invaluable.

Dynamic ultrasonography examination demonstrating
the full thickness tear and already occurring muscle atrophy
due to misdiagnosis and not referring the patient
to proper diagnostic workup

Demonstration of how very small muscle defect is made and revealed
to be a complete tear with muscle contraction
under diagnostic sonography (not possible with MRI)

image

Complete tear of rectus femoris
with large hematoma (blood)

image

Separation of muscle ends due to tear elicited
on dynamic sonography examination

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