A painful and dangerous condition caused by pressure build-up from internal bleeding or swelling of tissues. The pressure decreases blood flow, depriving muscles and nerves of required nourishment.
- Severe pain.
- Sensation of pins and needles.
- Weakness of the affected area.
- Visible swelling of the area.
- Redness in the area (depending on the cause).
- Recent changes to; activity level or training duration.
- Tight Gastrocnemius and Soleus muscles (calves).
- Biomechanical factors (Flat feet or high arched feet).
- Motor vehicle accidents or traumatic injury to the leg.
Treatment for Compartment Syndrome
- Activity modification or reduction.
- Soft tissue massage & stretching exercise.
- If biomechanics is a contributory cause – orthotics may be considered.
- Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (Nurofen etc).
- For severe cases of compartment syndrome, emergency surgery is required.
What can you do?
- Reduce or modify current activities.
- Gradually resume normal activity as symptoms resolve.
- Deep tissue massage.
- Footwear assessment – it may be time for a new pair.
- Stretch your lower leg muscles – but not to the point that it causes pain.
- See a healthcare professional for advice.