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Shin Splint Pain - Causes, Symptoms & Treatment

Dr. Ritesh Kharnal 87% (601 ratings)
MSPT (Master of Physical Therapy)
Physiotherapist, Indore
Shin splints refer to pain felt anywhere along the shinbone from knee to ankle.It is a common overuse injury that most runners will deal with and dread. It is an inflammatory condition of the front part of the tibia. Pain felt on the inner side of the shinbone is called ‘medial shin splints’, while the term ‘anterior shin splints’ refers to pain felt on the outer side. While medial shin splints are more common, pain may be felt on both sides of the shinbone in severe cases.
The common term ‘shinbone’ suggests there is only one bone in the lower leg. Actually, there are two: the fibula and the tibia. The muscles of the fibula attach to the ankle and help to move the foot. The muscles on the outer side of the tibia extend over the top of the foot and help to lift the foot & uncurl the toes.
Causes of Shin Splints
Shin splits commonly occur due to overuse or over-activity. It usually occurs when a person has started running after a long period. Running on hard surfaces or wearing of inadequate and poorly shoes is also one of the major causes of shin splints. Other then this being overweight, lack of calcium or any previous injury can also be reasons of pain in lower leg.
Signs & Symptoms of Shin Splints
The patient has a dull, aching pain in the front part of the lower leg. For some, the pain and discomfort emerge only during exercise, while for others it comes after the physical activity is over. Pain can also be there all the time. The pain can be on either side of the shinbone, or in the muscle itself - this depends on the cause. Signs and symptoms related to shin splints may include:
Moderate swelling in lower leg
Tenderness or soreness along the inner part of the lower leg
Feet may feel numb and weak, because swollen muscles irritate the nerves
Pain triggers when the toes and foot are bent downwards
In severe cases,pain can also be felt while climbing stairs
Stress fractures of one of the two bones in the leg below the knee can also cause shin splint-type pain. A stress fracture is a type of incomplete fracture in a bone. Stress fractures tend to occur as a result of overuse and are known as overuse injuries.
Diagnosis of Shin Splits
Shin splints are usually fairly easy to diagnose. The doctor carries out a physical exam, checks the patient's medical history, and may ask relevant questions regarding lifestyle and physical activities.Sometimes, the doctor may order some diagnostic tests in order to rule out other possible causes, such as a stress fracture. The tests you may have are listed below
MRI scan- This uses magnets and radiowaves to produce images of your shin bone and surrounding soft tissues. Because MRI scans are the most accurate and don’t expose you to radiation, this is usually the test of choice.
X-ray- This is a test that uses radiation to produce an image of the inside of your body.
CT scan - This uses X-rays to make a three-dimensional image of your shin bone. You’re exposed to more radiation than a simple X-ray when you have this test.
Bone scan - This looks for abnormalities or changes in your bones.
Treatment of Shin Splints
Self-help
Following are things you can do yourself to treat shin splints
Avoid doing activities that causes pain,swelling or discomfort. It is better to do low-impact exercises like bicycling, swimming instead of completely avoiding it. But if you have stress fracture it is recommended to take rest for few weeks and heal properly.
Try cold ice packs to help relieve any pain. Wrap your ice pack in a towel – don’t apply it directly onto your skin. Hold it in place for 10 to 20 minutes at a time. You can repeat this several times a day if you need to.
You can take over-the-counter painkillers like paracetamol or ibuprofen to reduce pain.
Check your sport shoes to make sure they are giving your feet enough support and cushioning. Orthotic insoles for your shoes may also help to improve the way you run.
When you start exercising again, start slowly. If you get shin splints again, stop the activity and rest for a few days before starting the exercise at a lower level of intensity.
Run on soft surfaces like grass
Non-surgical treatment
Your physiotherapist can develop a training programme for you to gradually increase your level of activity and help you return to your usual sports. They may use a range of different treatments to help your recovery, including massage and stretching exercises.
Surgery
Most of the time, surgery isn’t required for shin splints. However, if your shin splints are caused by compartment syndrome and your pain is severe, your doctor may suggest an operation called a fasciotomy. This releases the pressure on the muscles in your lower leg.
Prevention of Shin Splints
Risk of developing shin splints can be reduce by doing the following
Wear shoes with good support and padding
Wear cushioned insoles to absorb some of the impact while doing any sport activity
Warm up before working out
Stretch the muscles in your legs after workouts
Work to maintain and improve strength in muscles
3 people found this helpful

Knee Anatomy - Better Understanding Helps Prevent Knee Injuries!

Dr. (Prof) Amit Kumar Agarwal 88% (10 ratings)
MBBS, MS - Orthopaedics, M.Ch - Orthopaedics, MCh - Trauma and Orthopeadic Surgery
Orthopedist, Ghaziabad
Knee Anatomy - Better Understanding Helps Prevent Knee Injuries!

The knee joint is the meeting point of several bones. The knee bone's connected to the thigh bone at knee joint. The thigh bone or femur is the longest bone in the human body and it sits directly above the knee. Below the knee joint lies the shinbone or tibia down to the ankle. Tibia is partnered with the fibula, which runs along the outside of the leg. The kneecap also called as patella lies in between, protecting the knee joint. When the leg bends, the patella moves on the front part of the femur.

Knee Joint Compartments - 

Arthritis affects the ends of the bones, or spots where the bones in the knee joint move against each other. The joint capsule is a thick ligamentous structure that surrounds the entire knee that contains synovial membrane which provides nourishment to all the surrounding structures. The synovial fluid produced by the synovial membrane lubricates the knee joint. The capsule itself is strengthened by the surrounding ligaments.

Cartilage in the knees - 


Cartilage covers up the knee joint's ends thus keeping the bones from rubbing together and creating friction. This makes cartilage critical to keeping the knees pain-free when one is running, walking bending or squatting. There are two types of cartilage in the knee joint. Meniscus cartilage makes up the crescent-shaped disks on the inside and outside of the knee between the femur and tibia. Meniscus cartilage works like a shock absorber, providing cushion to the joint when walking to running. Joint or articular cartilage covers the bones of the knee, making smooth and friction free movement.


Cartilage is about eighty percent water when we are young, and can lose water content over time to drop to about seventy percent. The knees are filled with fluid that helps to keep the cartilage smooth and slippery. If this fluid is too much can stretch out the joint and less can lead to friction between the bones.

Hence, it is imperative to know how the parts of the knee joint work together, as it is the first step one can take to maintain or restore knee health. In case you have a concern or query you can always consult an expert & get answers to your questions!

 

 

2376 people found this helpful

Knee Ligament Injuries - Ligament Tear & Damage!

Dr. Senthil Kamalasekaran 90% (127 ratings)
MS - Orthopaedics, MBBS
Orthopedist, Chennai
Knee Ligament Injuries -  Ligament Tear & Damage!

There are many situations under which people may go through joint or muscle damage. There are other portions that may also go through the side effects of such damage. During the damage, a knee ligament might be overstretched (sprained), or at times even torn. A ligament tear can be incomplete (only a portion of the filaments that make up the tendon are torn) or complete (the tendon is torn totally). Knee tendon wounds can bring about pain, swelling, wounding and lessen the movement of your knee. Your knee joint may feel unsteady and you may walk with a limp.

There are four tendons in the knee that could get damage:

  1. The anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) is one of the two noteworthy tendons in the knee. It connects the thighbone and the shinbone in the knee.
  2. The posterior cruciate ligament (PCL) is the second significant tendon in the knee also connecting the thighbone to the shinbone in the knee.
  3. The lateral collateral ligament (LCL) connects the thighbone to the fibula, the littler bone of the lower leg on the parallel or external side of the knee.
  4. The medial collateral ligament (MCL) additionally connects the thighbone to the shinbone on the medial or inside of the knee.

Side effects can include the following:

  1. A popping sound or feeling at the time of the injury can in some cases be heard if a ligament is entirely torn.
  2. Swelling of your knee. When a tendon is harmed, there might be some bleeding inside your knee joint from the harmed tendon. This can lead to knee swelling. The level of swelling will rely upon the seriousness of the damage. Minor ligament sprains may bring about a little amount of swelling, though totally torn ligaments may cause more damage.
  3. Pain in your knee. Once again, the level of pain depends upon the seriousness of the knee damage.
  4. Your knee might ache even on touching it.
  5. Chondromalacia patella is a condition in which the cartilage under the knee cap becomes softer.
  6. A feeling that your knee is might not be stable or even if you would be able to stand on it. This may make you limp. This too depends upon how serious the damage to the tendon is.
  7. Wounds around your knee can occur at times. It might take some time to heal.

Treatments that can help elevate the pain are as follows:

  1. Rest the knee
  2. Ice your knee to get rid of pain and swelling
  3. Apply compression on your knee
  4. Raise your knee on a pad when you are sitting or resting
  5. Wear a knee brace to balance the knee
  6. Take painkillers as recommended by your specialist. If you wish to discuss about any specific problem, you can consult an Orthopedist.
2805 people found this helpful

7 Most Common Causes Of Knee Pain!

Dr. Kunal Makhija 90% (10 ratings)
MBBS Bachelor of Medicine and Bachelor of Surgery, MS - Orthopaedics, Fellowship In Joint Replacement, Fellowship In Minimal Invasive Subvastus Knee Replacement
Orthopedist, Navi Mumbai
7 Most Common Causes Of Knee Pain!

The knee is one of the biggest and most complex joints in the body. The knee is joined by the thigh bone (femur) to the shinbone (tibia). The little bones that keep running nearby the tibia (fibula) and the kneecap (patella) are alternate bones that make the knee joint. Ligaments associated with the knee-related leg muscles move the knee joint. Tendons join the knee bones and provide help to the knee:

  • The foremost tendon keeps the femur from sliding in reverse on the tibia (or the tibia sliding forward on the femur).
  • The back tendon keeps the femur from sliding forward on the tibia (or the tibia from sliding in reverse on the femur).
  • The average and horizontal tendons keep the femur from sliding side to side.

Some of the most common knee joint conditions are as follows:

  1. Chondromalacia patella: Irritation of the ligament underneath the kneecap (patella), bringing about knee pain. This is a typical reason for knee pain in youngsters.
  2. Knee osteoarthritisOsteoarthritis is the most widely recognized type of joint inflammation and regularly influences the knees. It is caused by maturing and wear and tear of the ligament. Its indications may include knee pain, swelling and stiffness.
  3. Meniscal tear: Damage to a meniscus, the ligament that supports the knee, regularly happens when the knee is twisted.
  4. ACL strain or tear: The ACL is in charge of a substantial part of the knee's flexibility. An ACL tear regularly leads to the knee popping out and may require surgical repair.
  5. PCL strain or tear: PCL tears can bring about pain, swelling, and knee unsteadiness. These wounds are less normal than ACL tears, and exercise based recovery is generally the best alternative.
  6. Patellar subluxation: The kneecap slides or separates along the thigh bone during movement, causing pain around the knee cap.
  7. Patellar tendonitisInflammation of the ligament related the kneecap (patella) to the shinbone. This happens mostly in competitors from rehashed bouncing.

Some of the most common and effective knee treatments are as follows:

  1. RICE treatment: Rest, ice, compression and elevation stand for RICE. The RICE treatment is a great solution for some knee conditions.
  2. Pain medications: Over-the-counter medicines or pain relievers, for example, acetaminophen (Tylenol), ibuprofen (Motrin), and naproxen (Aleve) can treat most knee joint pains.
  3. Non-intrusive treatment: An exercise routine can strengthen the muscles surrounding the knee, expanding the knee's strength.
  4. Cortisone infusion: Injecting steroid into the knee that can diminish pain and swelling.
  5. Hyaluronan infusion: Injection of a “gooey” material into the knee that may diminish pain from the joint and delay the requirement for a knee surgery.
  6. Knee surgery: Surgery might be done to amend a number of knee conditions. Surgery can supplant or repair a torn tendon, expel a harmed meniscus, or replace a seriously harmed knee.
  7. Arthroscopic surgery: An endoscope is embedded into the knee joint. Arthroscopic surgery has a shorter recovery and restoration period than open surgery.

In case you have a concern or query you can always consult an expert & get answers to your questions!

4041 people found this helpful

Knee Joint - 7 Most Common Problems!

MBBS, MS - Orthopaedics, DNB - Orthopedics
Orthopedist, Delhi
Knee Joint - 7 Most Common Problems!

The knee is one of the biggest and most complex joints in the body. The knee is joined by the thigh bone (femur) to the shinbone (tibia). The little bones that keep running nearby the tibia (fibula) and the kneecap (patella) are alternate bones that make the knee joint. Ligaments associated with the knee-related leg muscles move the knee joint. Tendons join the knee bones and provide help to the knee:

  • The foremost tendon keeps the femur from sliding in reverse on the tibia (or the tibia sliding forward on the femur).
  • The back tendon keeps the femur from sliding forward on the tibia (or the tibia from sliding in reverse on the femur).
  • The average and horizontal tendons keep the femur from sliding side to side.

Some of the most common knee joint conditions are as follows:

  1. Chondromalacia patella: Irritation of the ligament underneath the kneecap (patella), bringing about knee pain. This is a typical reason for knee pain in youngsters.
  2. Knee osteoarthritisOsteoarthritis is the most widely recognized type of joint inflammation and regularly influences the knees. It is caused by maturing and wear and tear of the ligament. Its indications may include knee pain, swelling and stiffness.
  3. Meniscal tear: Damage to a meniscus, the ligament that supports the knee, regularly happens when the knee is twisted.
  4. ACL strain or tear: The ACL is in charge of a substantial part of the knee's flexibility. An ACL tear regularly leads to the knee popping out and may require surgical repair.
  5. PCL strain or tear: PCL tears can bring about pain, swelling, and knee unsteadiness. These wounds are less normal than ACL tears, and exercise based recovery is generally the best alternative.
  6. Patellar subluxation: The kneecap slides or separates along the thigh bone during movement, causing pain around the knee cap.
  7. Patellar tendonitisInflammation of the ligament related the kneecap (patella) to the shinbone. This happens mostly in competitors from rehashed bouncing.

Some of the most common and effective knee treatments are as follows:

  1. RICE treatment: Rest, ice, compression and elevation stand for RICE. The RICE treatment is a great solution for some knee conditions.
  2. Pain medications: Over-the-counter medicines or pain relievers, for example, acetaminophen (Tylenol), ibuprofen (Motrin), and naproxen (Aleve) can treat most knee joint pains.
  3. Non-intrusive treatment: An exercise routine can strengthen the muscles surrounding the knee, expanding the knee's strength.
  4. Cortisone infusion: Injecting steroid into the knee that can diminish pain and swelling.
  5. Hyaluronan infusion: Injection of a “gooey” material into the knee that may diminish pain from the joint and delay the requirement for a knee surgery.
  6. Knee surgery: Surgery might be done to amend a number of knee conditions. Surgery can supplant or repair a torn tendon, expel a harmed meniscus, or replace a seriously harmed knee.
  7. Arthroscopic surgery: An endoscope is embedded into the knee joint. Arthroscopic surgery has a shorter recovery and restoration period than open surgery.

In case you have a concern or query you can always consult an expert & get answers to your questions!

3145 people found this helpful
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