Enlarge Text: - + | Print

Shin Splints

The name “shin splints” refers to pain along the inside of the shin or tibia bone. Overuse or repetitive activity results in inflammation of the muscles, tendons and periosteum of the tibia, causing the pain commonly referred to as shin splints.

Several things are commonly believed to predispose a person to shin splints, such as flat feet or abnormally rigid arches. Activities that contribute to shin splints include running, dancing or sudden increases in training, as in the case of military training.

Shin Splints Treatment
Resting from activity, cross training, anti-inflammatory medication, ice, mild compression and stretching are all beneficial self-treatment for shin splints. Slowly increasing activity once pain has subsided, along with proper warm up and stretching, will aid in returning to action.

Causes of Shin Splints
The three main causes of shin pain are:

  • Stress fractures—Tiny cracks in the bone caused by the repetitive application of force, such as repeatedly jumping up and down or running long distances.
  • Tendonitis—Tendons are the thick, fibrous cords that attach muscles to bones. Tendonitis results from irritation of a tendon, which causes pain and tenderness just outside a joint.
  • Compartment syndrome—A swelling of the leg muscles that results in increased pressure to a compartment of the lower leg. While this is a severe, evolving injury requiring immediate surgical repair, it is not very common.

Let the Sports Medicine Program at Gwinnett Medical Center–Duluth help you resolve the pain shin splints causes. Our expert physical trainers and doctors can prescribe you a treatment plan that will help get you back to playing the sports you love.

For a free physician referral to one of Atlanta’s top sports medicine doctors, please call 678-312-5000.