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Welcome, medical contents search April 25, 2013
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Shin splints

more about Shin splints

  • Shin splints  represent a group of problems that cause pain along the shin bone.  Shin splints result from overuse injuries to the muscles, tendons and adjacent tissues.

  • Shin splints cause a dull pain, swelling and tenderness along the shinbone.  The pain usually covers about four to six inches in length, and is noticed most when beginning an exercise, then reappearing after the physical activity is finished.

  • Overuse is the most common cause.  Pain usually occurs following sudden increases in intensity or lengthy amounts of activity.  Shin splints are common among athletes who are constantly running on hard surfaces such as runners, basketball players or tennis players.
  • The factors that increase the risk of shin splints are worn-out shoes, imbalance of the lower leg muscles, improper shoes (inadequate shock absorption) and flat feet.

  • The diagnosis is based on symptoms and a history of athletic activity.  X-Rays of the lower leg or a bone scan may be necessary to rule out other causes of leg pain.

  • Rest of the affected leg-while resting, a low-impact exercise such as swimming or cycling is recommended to maintain overall fitness.
  • Apply an ice pack to reduce the swelling and pain
  • Anti-inflammatory medications
  • Wrapping the swollen lower leg with an elastic bandage
  • Custom-made shoe inserts can correct the underlying problems of the foot
  • Stretching and strengthening exercises of the lower leg muscles
  • Return to activity -- if the pain subsides, a light walking regiment is allowed.  You should stop walking if the pain returns.  Gradual increase in activity is important to prevent a recurrence.

  • The prognosis is good with proper treatment.  Shin splints may reoccur if the patient attempts to resume physical activity too quickly.

more about Shin splints

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