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Athletic Training

RE: Shin Splints

09/14/2010

Question:

I have asked the question below before and thank you for the answer. I stoped my walks for a week and my shin felt ok so I went back to my walks again and not as much and slower. But my shin is started to hurt again. I can`t go for my regular walks becuase sith in five minutes my shin hurts. It has been about a month and my shin is not getting any better. It gets so tigh it feels like a rock. Should I do any thing different now or see my doctor now?

Question: I started back walking and I know now that it was to much and too fast too soon. I also have RA so I needed to take it even slow just coming off a big long flare. But I didn`t. Now I got pain when I walk about 4 inches from my ankle and almost straigt down from my toe next to my little toe. It hurts to first walk on it and the more I walk the less pain there is but the pain comes back once I stop walking on it. Is that where you normaly find the pain from shin splints and what is the normal course of treatment?

Answer: Hello and thank you for your inquiry at Netwellness. Traditionally shin splints or medial tibial stress syndrome (MTSS) occurs a little higher than you are describing and localizes over that medial tibia (shin bone). Common causes for MTSS are tight calf muscles (gastrocnemius and soleus), weak posterior tibialis, and overuse of some sort (running volume and surface).

For the described conditions, common treatments involve stretching, icing after activity, evaluating foot mechanics and possibly modifying activity level/conditions.

A potential cause for your discomfort may be arising from your tibialis anterior and or toe extensors. With activity, these muscles become sore. However, as you progress through activity and the muscle is working through a normal range, the discomfort can subside. You may want to follow up with your physician due to your medical history and to rule out any mechanical and or neurological conditions.

Answer:

Thanks for using NetWellness. If your conservative treatments and rest have not helped your shins I would say that it is definitely time see a Sports Medicine Physician. Hope you can get back to walking soon! 

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Response by:

Courtney D Siegel, MEd, ATC Courtney D Siegel, MEd, ATC
Assistant Athletic Trainer
Instructor of Athletic Training
College of Medicine
The Ohio State University