Chronic Hamstring Injuries

Chronic Hamstring Injuries

Your hamstring muscles are in the back of the thigh and can be damaged by inadequate warm-up before exercising, lack of lower back flexibility or abnormal biomechanics.   Mot chronic hamstring injuries cone from improperly rehabilitated injuries or traumas over a long period of time. Hamstring flexibility or lack of increases the possibility of small tears that cause the muscles to shorten and tighten.   Take care of hamstring injuries immediately by employing R.I.C.E ore rest, ice, compression and elevation.

Rehabilitation and Management

Recovery from a hamstring injury begins with the recognition of the injury and severity. Physical therapy or PT may be needed depending and how long ago the injury occurred, lifestyle and activity levels, and how severe the injury might be.

Rehabilitation for hamstring injuries are categorized into several different phases: acute stage, subacute phase, remodeling phase, eccentric strengthening, functional stage, return to activity.

Injuries to your hamstring require treatments geared toward decreasing inflammation and maintaining an acceptable range of motion. Using protection, rest, ice, compression, elevation (PRICE) are the best treatments. Once the pain has lessened the physical therapist begins gentle range of motion exercises. Therapists may prescribe the use of a cane or crutches to help with stability when walking. A few days after the injury, most patients begin to feel better and want to return to normal activities. It is best to complete a rehabilitation program to avoid re-injuring the muscles. Strengthening, balance and stretching is emphasized to prevent recurrence.

The subacute phase is five days to three weeks after the inflammation and injury. Active range of motion and muscle strengthening exercises are prescribed. Aquatic therapy is excellent and prevents the pain and injury coming from heavy weight bearing exercises. It may be necessary to undergo a transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation to provide pain relief. Continue using ice to decrease pain and inflammation. Actively start cardiovascular training by swimming and participating in upper body exercises.

The remodeling phase of recovery from hamstring injuries begins with isometric exercises. Start with ankle weights but keep