Hamstring Tear Not Healing
Category: Health > Conditions and Diseases
Asked by: sarahm19-ga
List Price: $6.00
12 Jul 2004 15:29 PDT
Expires: 11 Aug 2004 15:29 PDT
Question ID: 373218
5 months ago, I went for a 3 mile run. When I finished, I stretched and iced my hamstrings on the couch because i had gotten sore the day after previous runs. When I stood up I felt and heard a pop, one which my MRI, physical therapsit, general doc and sports doc have determined to be a tear in the belly of the lateral head of the gastrocnemius muscele. I have seen 3 general doctors, 1 sports doc, 2 PTs, 2 chiropractors, a massage therapist and a dietitian. I have seen hardly any improvement in the status of my leg in 5 months even though I have stopped all exercise (besides the strength exercises in physical therapy) No running or going for walks. The main problem is the muscle fibers keep popping open again. Approx 10 times in the healing process, maybe even more, I'll do the simplist things (for example reach foreward to get water, try 1lb on a hamstring curl when i felt ready, walk for a little in 1 store, rolling over in bed) and it pops. For the next couple days I am in such stinging pain that I can't get out of bed. After a few days, I start back at day 1 with the crutches and I am weaker. Here are the things that have been happening with my leg since the very beginning: a purple, mottled look on the hamstring, the whole leg is swollen and constantly painful (mostly just behind the knee), sudden stabs of pain everywhere from my butt to my toes, a cold feeling on my leg, a burning feeling on the front side of my knee and small bruises on the hamstring. The MRI said that everything else (the knee, meniscus, everything) was fine. It said simply the tear and swelling. I had vascular problems such as blood clots ruled out with tons of vascular tests and two full blood tests - everything normal. I saw a dietitian who said my diet is great - tons of protein. Here are the things I'm doing for my leg (that I've been doing since the beginning): Massage/ultrasound 3 times per week, use of an electric stimulator 2 times per week, daily strengthening and stretching, heat (when not newly torn) and I'm taking bee pollen, glutamine, vit E, multivitamin, circulation formula, vioxx, magnesium, ginger,arnica, bromelain and motrin. All of the doctors I see tell me I should be doing 5-10 lbs on my hamstring stregthening exercises. I'm doing hamstring curls, calf raises and some butt exercises because I have major atrophy from being on crutches for like 2 months. The problem is, I'm too weak for even 1 lb! I tried that and it retore. I was told it could take up to a year to heal completely, but I am not seeing ANY progress, I can still barely walk. My doctor said surgery is impossible because the muscle fibers would not hold together. He also said no to cortisone shots. My questions are 1) Is this type of re-opening setbacks common with muscle tears? 2) Is it possible that the fibers are not healing straight (does that happen to people?), that's why it keeps reoccuring? If so, what can be done about that? And is there anything else that would help me? Thank you.
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Re: Hamstring Tear Not Healing
From: gimme1-ga on 07 Aug 2004 07:16 PDT
Q "Is this type of re-opening setbacks common with muscle tears?" Yes. But note that recurrent hamstrings strains may be indicative of an underlying problem in the lower (lumbar) spine or the knee. See - http://www.time-to-run.com/injuries/hamstring/treatment.htm http://liaquatian.8k.com/13.htm (scroll to section 'Focal Signs') http://www.sportsinjurybulletin.com/archive/hamstring-rehab.html (see last paragraph 'neural hamstrings' list http://www.btinternet.com/~diptone/arp/rehablo1.htm (see scenario1) Q "Is it possible that the fibers are not healing straight (does that happen to people?), that's why it keeps reoccuring? Probably answered in the last reference above.
Re: Hamstring Tear Not Healing
From: tlspiegel-ga on 07 Aug 2004 10:30 PDT
Hi sarahm19, Soft tissue injuries take an extra long time to heal. The injury will heal with scar tissue, which is not as flexible as muscle and doesn't perform as well. Scar tissue in the middle of the muscle may predispose you to reinjury and potentially leave the muscle weaker than it was before the injury. A previously injured muscle is more likely to tear again, particularly if it was not fully rehabilitated. Physical therapy is very important to help you strengthen a damaged muscle. http://www.allaboutmydoc.com/surgeonweb/surgeonId.433/clinicId.266/theme.theme10/country.US/language.en/page.article/docId.40479 http://www.thestick.net/Calf%20Heart%20Attack.htm http://www.sigafoospt.com/Education/Muscle%20Tears.htm http://forums.runnersworld.com/thread.jspa?threadID=197004&messageID=2957925 http://www.enerchihealth.com/therapies/active_release.html Active Release Therapy is a specialized massage technique which uses intense localized pressure combined with simple stretching exercises to relieve soft tissue pain caused by injured muscles, whiplash, or repetitive stress injuries such as carpal tunnel syndrome. The therapist manipulates muscle tissue to restore sliding of layers of muscle across each other, loosen knots in the muscle, or release nerves which are stuck to the muscle tissue. Problems are typically relieved in three to six 10 - 15 minute sessions, after which some practitioners claim a 96% success rate. Developed by Colorado Springs chiropractor Michael Leahy in the early eighties, the technique has become especially popular among athletes. Conventional treatments for these conditions include anti-inflammatory drugs, deep-tissue massage, or splinting and for the most serious cases, surgery is often indicated. http://www.back2health4you.com/success_stories/Active%20Release%20Testimonial.pdf http://www.thestretchinghandbook.com/archives/sports-injuries-pt2.htm Best regards, tlspiegel
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