Treat a hamstring
Whether muscle strain or torn muscle: If a violation of the musculature is suspected, the movement should be stopped immediately and the injury should be treated according to the so-called PECH rule.
- Break: Whether hamstring in the calf, in the thigh or in the arm: The affected body part should be spared in the following days and weeks as far as possible.
- Ice: Cooling helps relieve the pain and inhibits bleeding into the tissues. The cooling pack should never be applied directly to the skin.
- Compression: Apply an elastic bandage. As a result, excessive swelling of the injured area can be avoided. Ideally, apply a cooling ointment to the injured area before applying the bandage.
- Elevating: Place the affected part of the body up as often as possible after the injury, reducing blood flow to the damaged tissue.
Final certainty, whether a muscle strain, a torn muscle fiber or a muscle tear, can only give a visit to the doctor. If necessary, he may also prescribe physiotherapeutic treatment or massages.
For severe pain to the doctor
In case of severe pain, a doctor should always be consulted so that the severity of the injury can be examined more closely. With the help of an ultrasound examination, the doctor can determine what kind of injury is present and how great the damage in the muscles actually is. If more than 75 percent of the muscle is torn, the torn muscle fibers may need to be treated surgically.
In the first 48 hours after the torn muscle, the affected area should be cooled as much as possible. Under no circumstances should you use warming or circulation-promoting ointments during this time as they can promote blood flow into the tissue. At a later date, however, such ointments may well be used to promote the healing of the bruise. It is also not advisable to stretch the affected muscles directly after the torn muscle, because stretching can make the injury even worse.
Muscular rupture: complications
A torn muscle fiber causes hemorrhage into the tissue with subsequent bruising. In the case of very severe bleeding, it is possible that the injury zone does not fully recover. If connective tissue grows into the bruise, scar tissue forms, which is significantly less elastic than the muscle tissue. This reduces the ability to contract and exert muscular strength. In addition, she is prone to re-injuries.
If a patient still has complaints after the injury has healed, these are usually due to the scar tissue. In such cases, it may be useful to surgically remove the scar tissue.
Another complication following a hamstring injury is the formation of a cyst around an incompletely healed bruise. A cyst is a capsule that contains the undegraded blood of the bruise. If the cyst is disturbed, it must be excised by surgery.
Exercising too early after a hamstring or massaging the injured area too early can lead to a chronic inflammation of the muscles. As a result, calcification can occur, which can ossify over time (myositis ossificans). Due to the ossification similar to the formation of scar tissue in the muscles areas that are less distensible and contractible than the rest of the muscles.
Muscular rupture: That's how long the healing takes
How long it takes for a hamstring to heal always depends on the individual case. As a rule, the duration of the healing process is between four and six weeks. If the hamstring is treated directly after the injury has occurred following the PECH rule, this usually has a positive effect on the duration of the healing process.
After a rest period of at least five days, everything is allowed during the healing process that causes no pain. As a rule, after a few days a slight strain on the affected muscles is possible. If you no longer have any troubles when straining your muscles in everyday life, you can try it with moderate cycling, a brisk walk or a relaxed endurance run.
If you feel pain during a workout, stop it immediately to prevent further damage to the muscles. By no means should you get back into full training before the hamstring healed completely. Until then, you absolutely must renounce fast-paced, jerky movements in the injured muscles.
Prevent a torn muscle
You can not actively avoid a torn muscle or a muscle strain, but with a few simple tips and tricks you can significantly reduce the risk of such a sports injury:
- Warm up carefully: the warm-up progamme before training increases blood circulation and muscle temperature. As a result, the muscles work better and injuries occur less frequently.
- Set maximum loads as possible at the beginning of the workout. Most muscle fiber tears only appear 30 to 60 minutes after the onset of exercise, when the muscles are already tired.
- Stretch your muscles carefully because a well-stretched muscle is less prone to injury.
- Avoid imbalances: If your musculature, for example, on the front of the thigh is much more pronounced than on the thigh back, such a dysbalance can favor injuries.