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ATHLETIC TRAINER

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INJURY OF THE MONTH

Shin Splints (Medial Tibial Stress Syndrome)

 

What is it?

Pain along the inner edge of the shinbone (tibia).

How does this happen? 

It develops after physical activity and is associated with running due to an overuse of the lower leg muscles from repetitive activity. Shin splints are common in athletes that run on hard or angled surfaces, or in those that wear improper shoes for their foot type.

Signs & Symptoms:

  • Dull, achy pain along the front of the lower leg
  • Sharp and razor-like pain may occur as well
  • Pain during and after physical activity
  • Aggravated by touching the sore spot

Treatment:

  • R.I.C.E.
  • Anti-inflammatory medication
  • Physical therapy, including flexibility and strengthening exercises
  • Supportive shoes

Prevention:

  • Cross train by alternating jogging with swimming or biking
  • Gradually increase training
  • Wear proper running shoes
  • Use proper running form

Return to play guideline:

  • Depends on the severity of pain and the type of treatment that is being used to manage the injury.