3 Ways To Diagnose A Calf Muscle Tear

Calf muscle strains and injuries are quite common, especially among athletes.[1] X Trusted Source PubMed Central Go to Source One of the most common sports injuries that affect mobility is a calf muscle tear. The main problem is that it can be difficult to distinguish this from straining or stretching the calf muscles, as the muscles here can tear if you keep moving. A calf muscle tear takes a long time to heal and is also prone to re-injury. There are other injuries that can cause calf pain, but if the pain is severe or you hear a “pop” or “click” sound coming from your leg, you should see a doctor right away.

Recognizing a calf muscle tear

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Understand which muscles can be injured in the calves. In fact, the “calf muscle” is made up of three muscles attached to the Achilles tendon located on the back of the foot, these three muscles are the calf twin, the soleus and the plantar, in which the calf twin is the largest. The majority of injuries that occur in the calves are injuries to the twin calf muscles.

This muscle, which passes through the knee and ankle joints, is composed of many fast-twitch muscle fibers. It is this property that makes it susceptible to tension and tear because it is constantly subjected to rapid stretching and contraction.

The soleus muscle passes through the ankle joint and is composed of many slow-twitch muscle fibers, so it is less prone to injury than the calf twin. However, the treatment for a slipper muscle injury is not the same as that of the calf muscle.

The plantar fascia has little to do with the calves and is considered residual muscle. If this muscle is injured, the treatment is similar to that of the calf twin.

The Achilles tendon connects these three muscles to the heel bone, and it can also be injured and cause calf pain. The most common injuries to the Achilles tendon are tendinitis or tendon tears.

Chẩn đoán rách cơ bắp chân – wikiHow

Know the cause of the muscle tear. Calf muscle tears mainly occur during strenuous activities, when you are exercising and suddenly change direction or speed up the exercise. Injuries often occur after you’ve had a sudden, vigorous movement that puts a lot of strain on your calf, such as in sports that require sudden increases in speed (eg, hurdle racing, high jump, basketball, soccer). ).

Sudden contraction. Sudden increase in speed from a stationary position is a common cause of calf tears. Short-distance runners are particularly susceptible to this injury. A sudden change in direction of movement, such as when playing basketball or tennis, can also be to blame.

Prolonged degeneration. Overwork or too much exercise is a common cause of muscle tearing, which is more likely to happen in runners and football players. Players have to contract suddenly and run for a long time, these two factors combined make them very easy to tear the calf muscle.

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“Weekend warriors” is a way to call people who exercise strenuously but infrequently, they are also prone to tearing calf muscles. Men are more susceptible to this injury than women.

Chẩn đoán rách cơ bắp chân – wikiHow

Identify the symptoms of a muscle tear. The symptoms of a calf muscle tear are often more immediate and obvious than the symptoms of a muscle strain. Similar to an Achilles tendon rupture, symptoms include:

feel like you’ve been hit or kicked in the back of the leg

clearly hear the “pop” or “click” sound in the foot

severe and sudden pain in the calf (often throbbing)

pain to the touch and swelling in the lower leg

bruising and/or discoloration

reduced mobility in the ankle

having trouble walking or standing on your toes


Chẩn đoán rách cơ bắp chân – wikiHow

Rest your feet. Sit down, elevate your legs and rest. If your leg is very painful and begins to swell, you most likely have a calf injury and need to be treated. The calf area can bruise, especially if it’s a muscle tear because then the calf will bleed internally.

If you hear a “pop” or swelling in your calf, you should go to the emergency room immediately.

Swelling or bleeding can cause a condition called compartment syndrome, where the increased pressure prevents enough oxygen and nutrients from reaching the muscles and nerves in the injured area. This happens after a broken bone or severely bruised muscle, so if you think you have a serious injury, get treatment as soon as possible. If you allow compartment syndrome to develop, you may need surgery.

Chẩn đoán rách cơ bắp chân – wikiHow

Contact your doctor. It is important to distinguish which muscles in the calf are injured, which you cannot do on your own. Your doctor will conduct tests such as an exam and an MRI scan to determine the extent of the injury. So if you think your calf muscle is torn, you should see a doctor right away.

If you self-diagnose and try to treat a calf muscle tear at home, there’s the potential for another injury or the injury to get worse.

Chẩn đoán rách cơ bắp chân – wikiHow

Ask your doctor about tests to check for injuries. They usually order an ultrasound or magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) of the injured area.

MRI technology uses magnetic waves and computers to create 2-D and 3-D images of the area to be scanned, used to diagnose internal injuries that simpler techniques such as X-rays do not. can do.

Your doctor may also recommend magnetic resonance angiography (MRA), which is a specialized type of MRI but shows blood vessels and often uses contrast dye to better see the blood vessels. MRA helps detect damaged or blocked blood vessels that can lead to other conditions such as compartment syndrome.

Chẩn đoán rách cơ bắp chân – wikiHow

Follow your doctor’s instructions. Treating a calf muscle tear usually doesn’t require surgery, but you should absolutely follow your doctor’s instructions while you’re recovering. Otherwise you could have a worse re-injury or long-term damage. You have to be patient because the recovery time takes up to 8 weeks and it takes many months for the calf to completely return to its normal state.

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Usually the immediate treatment is rest, ice, compression and immobilization (splint etc.).

Restorative treatment includes physical therapy, massage, and the use of crutches.

Find out other causes of calf pain

Chẩn đoán rách cơ bắp chân – wikiHow

Identify the symptoms of cramps. Calf cramp is very painful because the muscle suddenly contracts, although this pain will either pass quickly or just need a simple countermeasure. Features of calf cramps include:

Tight and tight leg muscles

Sudden pain in the body

There is a “lump” or bulge in the calf

Chẩn đoán rách cơ bắp chân – wikiHow

Treatment of cramps. Muscle cramps or spasms usually go away on their own fairly quickly, but you can speed this up by stretching and applying heat (or cold).

Stretch the calf muscle cramps. To do this, use your own weight on that leg and slightly bend the knee. Another method is to sit down with the sore leg stretched out in front of you, using the towel to gently pull the top of your foot toward you.

Hot compress. Use a heating pad, hot water bottle, or warm bath towel to relax your calf muscles. Bathing or showering with warm water also works well.

Cold compress. Massaging the calves with an ice pack can cure cramps. Each cold compress should not be longer than 15-20 minutes and always wrap the ice pack in a towel to avoid cold burns.

Chẩn đoán rách cơ bắp chân – wikiHow

Recognize the symptoms of tendonitis. Tendons are the “bands of tissue” that connect muscle to bone, and anywhere where tendons are located, tendonitis can occur. However, tendinitis most commonly occurs in the elbows, knees, and heels. This disease causes pain in the lower part of the calf or heel. Symptoms of tendonitis include:

Dull pain that gets worse when you move the joint

There is a crunching sensation when moving the joints

Pain to the touch or redness

Swelling or lumps

Chẩn đoán rách cơ bắp chân – wikiHow

Treatment of tendonitis. The treatment for tendinitis is quite simple: rest, take over-the-counter pain relievers, apply cold compresses, apply compression bandages, and elevate the injured joint.

Chẩn đoán rách cơ bắp chân – wikiHow

Identify the symptoms of heel spurs. A slipper strain is less severe than a strain or tear of the calf muscle. This injury is common in athletes who play sports that require daily jogging or long-distance running. Common symptoms of heel spurs include:

Tightness in calf muscles

Pain that gets worse after a few days or weeks

Pain that gets worse after walking or jogging

Slightly swollen

Chẩn đoán rách cơ bắp chân – wikiHow

Recognize the symptoms of an Achilles tendon rupture. Because this tendon connects the calf muscle to the heel bone, it causes calf pain when injured. Achilles tendon injuries occur when you exercise vigorously, fall, step into a hole, or jump incorrectly. You should seek immediate treatment if you think the Achilles tendon has ruptured because it is a serious injury. Symptoms of tendon rupture include:

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clearly hear “pop” or “click” in the heel (usually but not always)

severe pain in the heel and may spread to the calf


can’t bend the foot down

unable to use the injured leg to “push” when walking

unable to stand on toes with injured leg

Chẩn đoán rách cơ bắp chân – wikiHow

Identify risk factors for rupture or tear of the Achilles tendon. If you know people who are at high risk for an Achilles tendon rupture, you can determine if this is the cause of your foot pain. People who are more likely to tear or rupture the Achilles tendon include:

People aged 30-40

Men (up to 5 times more likely to rupture a tendon than women)

Players of sports that require sudden runs, jumps, and acceleration

Steroid injectors

People using fluoroquinolone antibiotics, including ciprofloxacin (Cipro) or levofloxacin (Levaquin)

Prevention of calf muscle injuries

Chẩn đoán rách cơ bắp chân – wikiHow

Stretch. According to the American College of Sports Medicine, you should stretch at least twice a week, but not necessarily before exercising. However, many experts recommend stretching after exercise. Applying exercises that increase the body’s flexibility like yoga will help you avoid muscle injuries.

Use a towel to stretch your calf muscles. Sit with your back straight with your legs stretched out in front of you. Wrap the towel around your feet and, holding the ends, gently pull your toes toward you until you feel a stretch in your calves. Hold for 5 seconds and then release. Repeat 10 times. Repeat the same with the other leg.

Use elastic bands to strengthen calves. Sit with your back straight with one leg straight out in front of you, and point your toes toward your head. Wrap the elastic around your feet and hold the ends. While maintaining tension with your hands, push the top of your foot toward the floor. You should feel a stretch in your calf muscles at this point. Return to starting position. Repeat 10-20 times for each leg.

Chẩn đoán rách cơ bắp chân – wikiHow

Warm up before exercise. Apply dynamic stretches to warm up before exercising. Unlike static stretching, which typically holds a position for a minute or two, dynamic stretching is similar to movements during exercise but uses less energy.

Practice brisk walking outdoors or on the treadmill.

The front lunge, swinging legs, and blood circulation-enhancing movements are great for warming up.

You can also do some exercises on an exercise ball, such as light stretching.

Chẩn đoán rách cơ bắp chân – wikiHow

Rested. Excessive movement or repetition of a stretch will create favorable conditions leading to calf muscle injury. You should consider taking a break from your usual sport or activity to try a new sport.

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