Sprain – tearing of a ligament
Strain – tearing of a muscle and/or tendon
Levels of severity: determined by passive range of motion assessment for sprains, resisted range of motion for strains very difficult to access because of inflammation assessment is best done by a physician. this information is provided so you know what is possible
Causes: gradual or trauma: increased load on the muscle/ligament that is not strong enough to do hold the weight.
over use, overextended muscles/ligaments, improper warm up before activity,
Treatments: treat according to stage of inflammation treat according to severity of injury ice massage Triggerpoint Myofascial release begin massage treatment as soon as possible to reduce adhesion formation especially with muscular strains.
Acute stage: lymph drainage, ice massage, passive range of motion,
Subacute stage: cross fiber friction, muscle energy or strain/counterstrain techniques, add strengthening as inflammation decreases, trigger point therapy, myofascial release
Chronic stage: cross fiber friction for ligaments, cross fiber friction of muscles,
Cautions: Traction may aggravate if it over-stretches muscles. Stretching may over-stretch and re-injure muscles. Repeated injury to ligaments can cause the ligament to become looser and more prone to re-injury. Be sure you are trained in treating acute injuries.
Other therapies: acupuncture, prolotherapy for ligaments, chiropractic, naturopathic (provides nutritional support needed for proper healing and functioning)
Muscle Strains By Whitney Lowe, LMT, NCTMB
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