What is Muscle Strain?
It is a contraction-induced injury in which muscle fibres tear due to extensive mechanical stress. This mostly occurs as a result of a powerful eccentric contraction or overstretching of the muscle.
A muscle strain can be acute or chronic.
- Acute muscle strain: An acute muscle strain occurs when muscle tears suddenly. It can be due to trauma or injuries when the muscle is not warmed up properly and has poor flexibility and conditioning. It may happen while slipping, jumping, running etc.
- Chronic muscle strain: These are the results of repetitive movement. The cause could be indulging in sports like rowing, tennis, basketball and poor postural practices.
Sign and symptoms
The sign and symptoms vary with the grade of the injury and may present as-
- Pain or tenderness
- Redness or bruising
- Loss of free movement (limited motion)
- Muscle weakness and spasm
Muscle strain is classified into different grades for the purpose of diagnosis depending on the severity of fibre damage as evident from the physical examination-
- Grade 1 strain: Only few muscle fibres are stretched or torn and the muscle has its normal strength.
- Grade 2 strain: Greater number of injured fibres are torn and it presents with pain, tenderness, swelling and loss of strength.
- Grade 3 strain: Tearing of the muscle all the way causing a סpopפע sensation as the muscle rips into two parts causing complete loss of function.
Radiologically, plain radiographs may show soft-tissue swelling in a case of muscle strain injury. Magnetic resonance (MR) imaging can confirm the injury site.
Initial treatment usually consists of rest, ice, and compression for relief of pain and swelling. Suitable medications may be prescribed and as pain and swelling decreases, physical therapy can be started to improve the motion and muscle strength. The time frame for healing of muscle strain injuries is directly related to the severity of injury. Minor muscle strain injuries may be healed in 1 week, whereas severe injuries may require 4 to 8 weeks.
Warning: Above information provided is an overview of the disease, we strongly recommend a doctor's consultation to prevent further advancement of disease and/or development of complications.
Disclaimer: The information provided herein on request, is not to be taken as a replacement for medical advice or diagnosis or treatment of any medical condition. DO NOT SELF MEDICATE. PLEASE CONSULT YOUR PHYSICIAN FOR PROPER DIAGNOSIS AND PRESCRIPTION.
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