Home Health Compartment syndrome in running: symptoms and remedies

Compartment syndrome in running: symptoms and remedies

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Today we will face a frequent pathology with Fisiorunning, but rarely diagnosed immediately, which blocks runners after a few minutes of running: compartment syndrome

By connecting to the muscle pathologies, and specifically those of the adductors, we take the opportunity to talk about the compartment syndromes which affect 95% of the legs and comprise 15% of injuries that can affect runners. In the race the adductors they are often affected by it.

What is compartment syndrome? –

The name derives from the anatomical interest of the muscle compartments which are surrounded and divided by bands, also including nerves and blood vessels. There Compartment syndromeand it is therefore a pathological condition of the runner that occurs exclusively during physical effort. Exercise increases intracompartmental pressure which hinders blood circulation in muscle fibers. The reduction of blood to the muscle prevents its proper function and causes pain due to lack of oxygen. The increase in blood pressure can also alter and compress structures nervous e arteriose distali.

So one repeated effort over time as running creates an increase in intramuscular pressures. This is also facilitated by the overload. So running overweight, with heavy backpacks (the military are often affected by it) and exaggerating with training favors this pathology. Recent scientific studies report that biomechanical muscle overloads could also lead to Compartment Syndrome.

What are the signs and symptoms of compartment syndrome? –

The pivotal symptom of compartment syndrome is pain deaf in the inner thigh; in the case of adductors. This manifests itself gradually with running, worsening over time and increasing impacts; totally ceasing with the interruption of the activity (usually within 15 minutes). It can be accompanied by changes in the sensitivity and of force of the leg, can give swelling and a feeling of compression. The runner identifies precisely after how long the pain occurs (with the help of the clock he knows the precise minutes since it appears) and the intensity or amount of effort that evokes it.

This type of onset of pain is easily found in a wide range of pathologies of runners. It is therefore essential differentiate it from other pathologies , which could be co-present, such as Tibial Stress Syndrome, both vascular and nerve entrapment syndromes, hernias, muscle injuries, lumbar pathologies and tumors.

What can a runner do for compartment syndrome? –

First of all, it will be essential to diagnose this pathology correctly and as soon as possible. So it is always better to rely on a healthcare professional if in doubt. The range of action on Compartment Syndrome is wide. We have a surgical indication through the Fasciotomy which must always be preceded by the conservative treatment which is successful in 65% of cases.

Per conservative treatment we mean rest, warmth and all physiotherapy maneuvers such as massage therapy, mobilization, manual therapy, osteopathy, passive and active stretching, specific rehabilitation exercises, instrumental therapies, etc.

Several scientific studies have found that the motor re-learning of running posture, with a change of support from the heel to the midfoot, considerably reduces the intercompartmental pressures, eliminating the Syndrome within a few weeks. In Fisiorunning, through thebiomechanical analysis of the run and the next retraining posturale, we set a correct support eliminating the risk of accidents such as Compartment Syndrome and consequently improve performance. The midfoot support and not in Overstriding associated with the increase in cadence allow greater cushioning and a reduced muscle response in contraction. In this way the symptomatic compartments are less stressed and normalize.


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