How To Treat Muscle Strain and Soft Tissue Injuries

Times have changed in how athletic injuries are treated. “No pain, no gain” clichés are out! Advancement in technology has dramatically changed the way athletes manage sprain and strain injuries. Athletes today are dropping the Advil bottle and ice packs and using new methods to manage soft tissue injuries.

image0035280 Cryo & Recovery Clinic has been helping members of the Superbowl champion Denver Broncos defense stay healthy and active on the field. Two to three times per week this season, members of the defensive team would come to this clinic to be treated for various conditions and alleviation of general muscle soreness. Using a combination of Whole Body Cryotherapy and Active Release Technique soft tissue therapies, small sprain and strain injuries resolve more quickly. For the Broncos, this means less missed time on the football field. For you, it means more time participating in a sport you love.

What Is A Muscle Strain?
A muscle strain, also called a pulled muscle, occurs when a muscle is stretched too far and microscopic tears occur within the muscle fibers. Common muscle strains include pulled hamstrings, groin strains and calf strains.

Muscle strain injuries are graded by severity:

  • Grade I: Mild discomfort, often no disability. Usually does not limit activity.
  • Grade II: Moderate discomfort, can limit ability to perform high level activities. May have moderate swelling and bruising associated.
  • Grade III: Severe injury that can cause significant pain. Often patients complain of muscle spasm, swelling, and significant bruising.

Recovery Time: Depends on the severity of the injury and tissue type involved. Muscle injuries can heal in as quickly as two weeks, while ligament injuries can take up to one year to fully heal. Under ideal conditions, healing of most soft tissue injuries yield approximately 70% strength compared to un-injured tissue.

When to see a doctor:
Mild sprains and strains can be treated at home. But you should see a doctor if you:
• Can’t move without significant pain
• Can’t move the affected joint within normal range of motion without pain
• Have numbness, tingling, or fatigue in any part of the injured area

Our doctors at 5280 Cryo & Recovery Clinic are able to identify specific areas of injury, grade the severity, and recommend appropriate management strategies. Often these treatment plans are quick, affective, and low cost. By using a combination of treatment modalities, conditions can both be managed symptomatically or preventatively with “prehab” or prevention-based rehab.