Some Jobs Are More At Risk For Back Problems

An article from the October 7, 2006 BBC News in the United Kingdom reports on a survey study listing the 5 top jobs most likely to cause back issues among workers in the United Kingdom. The list, compiled and published by the British Chiropractic Association (BCA) has some surprising findings. The study conducted by the BCA surveyed 2,374 people, found that 59% of the working population, in the top category at risk for back problems, sit down all day. Many of these people do not leave their desks even for a lunch break. This sedentary lifestyle coupled with positioning and long hours puts office workers at a higher risk than the excessive lifting and carrying done by those employed in manual jobs. The top five list as released by the British Chiropractic Association is as follows:

1. Office Worker – Long periods of time sitting in awkward positions, often slouched over computer keyboards, or maybe sitting at chairs not properly adjusted for their needs.

2. Nurse – Long shifts, often on their feet all day as well as lifting and carrying.

3. Driver – Hours a day spent at the wheel, sitting in a poor position, along with limited movement.

4. Laborer – Repeated strain from lifting heavy weights and often twisting in awkward positions.

5. Teacher & Nursery Staff – Continuously bending down to a child’s height and lifting children can cause back problems Dr. Tim Hutchful speaking for the BCA comments: “This survey has highlighted what we chiropractors have known for some time. Lack of exercise and sedentary lifestyle is taking its toll. It is assumed that those most at risk from back pain are the ones who have very physical jobs however, as this research has unveiled, whilst lifting and carrying are still common triggers for back pain, it is those with less physically demanding jobs and who are often seated for the majority of the day that could be most prone to back problems.”

According to the BCA, one third of UK citizens will suffer from some sort of back problem. Dr. Hutchful added: “For many who work in an office environment, it is the day-to-day, mundane routines that are at the root of most back problems. Hunching over computer keyboards and cradling the phone between the ear and shoulder can all contribute to lower back and neck stiffness, not to mention the fact that many office workers sit for hours at a time with very little movement.”

References: www.chiropracticresearch.org

Can Chiropractors help with Anti-Aging?

Our body is in a constant and never ending struggle for survival. Scientists estimate that each of our cells must withstand around 10,000 individual assaults from reactive oxygen species (ROS) or free radicals. Amazingly, the body has an incredible system of self-healing that withstands the onslaught and rebuilds what has been damaged. Chiropractic care has been shown to be a powerful method of stabilizing and enhancing this self-healing ability.

The central nervous system is the primary system that controls all function and healing within the body. This flow of nerve energy from the brain to the body coordinates all 75 trillion cells to action. The brain is then fed through movement information that it receives from skin, joint, & muscle receptors. This movement information is called “proprioception.” The brain depends on adequate proprioception for optimal function.

Physical nerve stress occurs when the spinal bones are twisted or thrown out of alignment. This is caused every day by macro traumas such as falls, car accidents, & sporting activities. Micro traumas such as bad posture, repetitive movements, and poor sleeping habits can damage the spine & nervous system as well. Physical nerve stress causes a deficiency in healthy brain-body signaling and an increased release of the stress hormone cortisol. This disrupts the body’s ability to heal.

Chiropractic adjustments remove this built-up pressure on the nervous system allowing the body to heal as it was designed. Many studies have shown chiropractic care to be a powerful form of anti-aging.

In 2005, a landmark study published in the Journal of Vertebral Subluxation (JVSR) found evidence that chiropractic care can reduce oxidative stress in the body.

Oxidative stress is the damage that occurs when free radicals outnumber the body’s antioxidants. Oxidative stress damages all body cell components: proteins, lipids and DNA. In fact, researchers have found that one out of every three proteins is rendered dysfunctional by unchecked free radical damage.

Thiols are sulfur containing compounds in the body that act as antioxidants. They react with free radicals to neutralize them. Serum levels of thiols reflect DNA’s capacity to repair itself, report scientists of Biomedical Diagnostic Research, Inc, and can be used to measure aging and disease status. In a 2003 study published in the Journal of Anti Aging Medicine, low serum thiol levels were found in nine different categories of human sickness and disease.

The study published in JVSR consisted of 76 participants: one group received short-term chiropractic care; a second group received long-term chiropractic care; and the third group received no chiropractic care.

The study qualified participants for age, sex and the use of nutritional supplements. Healthy individuals that received chiropractic care for 2 or more years had higher serum thiol levels than those with disease. Some of the chiropractic patients had serum thiol levels higher than what is associated with normal wellness.

Chiropractor Dr. Christopher Kent explained: ‘Oxidative stress, metabolically generating free radicals, is now a broadly accepted theory of how we age and develop disease.’

‘Going through life,’ he adds, ‘we experience physical, chemical and emotional stress. These stresses affect the function of the nervous system. We hypothesized that these disturbances in nerve function could affect oxidative stress and DNA repair on a cellular level.’

‘Chiropractic care appears to improve the ability of the body to adapt to stress,’ concluded Kent.

Chiropractors do more than just pain relief, they ignite the body to heal and stay healthy!

References:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Thiol

https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/20809.php

https://www.draxe.com/your-chiropractor-could-be-your-newest-antioxida…

Enten, Roni; The Secret Behind Acai; Life Extension Magazine. July/August 2010.

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/15142434

 

Chiropractic Adjustments Enhance Signals to the Brain and Body

The brain is the master control system for the entire body. It sends and receives a complicated frequency of signals with the body that dictate the function of the body. When there is interference in this neurological feedback loop, it alters the environment the brain perceives itself to be in; this consequently changes the adaptation process the brain orchestrates throughout the body. Chiropractic adjustments have been shown to enhance the sensorimotor integration of the brain with the body.

Many experts have hypothesized that increased stress cycles in the body produce the environment for dis-ease and eventually disease within the body. Stress can come from a variety of sources in the mental/emotional form, chemical form, and physical realm. When the body is under increased stress it responds by increasing its sympathetic tone. This means the body shunts itself into “fight or flight” survival based mode by altering cardiovascular & endocrine function to get itself ready for dynamic activity.

Increased sympathetic tone causes a release of stress hormones such as adrenalin, epinephrine, and cortisol. This is the same response we get when we are anxious or exercising. This is okay if it is for a short period of time; however, when the stress lasts longer than expected it exhausts the body and causes a state of dis-ease to manifest.

When the brain sends information to the organs, muscles, and tissues of the body, this is called efferent neurological flow. In return, the afferent flow of information includes all the messages sent to the brain from skin, muscle, joint, and organ receptors. This afferent/efferent neurological loop is how the body is able to respond and adapt appropriately to its environment.

The ramifications of increased stress hormones in the body include overworked adrenal glands, lowered immunity, decreased digestive functions, fatigue, & blood pressure disturbances. Increased cortisol levels also cause ligament laxity by stripping critical proteins from the tendon and ligament structures. This causes joint weakness throughout the body, including the spine and extremities, making them much more susceptible to injury.

Subluxation is a term used to describe mechanical compression and irritation to spinal joints and nerves. Subluxation scrambles the neurological feedback loop by causing altered rhythms of neurological flow. Subluxations are caused by trauma, poor posture, or increased chemical and emotional stresses.

Subluxations are a physical stress on the body and therefore increase the sympathetic tone, so the body shunts its energy toward the fight or flight system. If the subluxation(s) are not corrected they continue to produce this increased stress response. This increases cortisol and causes greater joint & ligament laxity in the spine and extremities making them more susceptible to injury. Additionally, increased long-term stress on the body greatly accelerates the degenerative processes of the spine and joints leading to osteoarthritis.

Chiropractic adjustments have been shown to normalize spinal afferent/efferent processes to their proper resting tone. This is like hitting the reset button on the computer when it is malfunctioning. The computer is allowed to pause and reprocess itself. Chiropractic adjustments stop the stress response and restore normal hormonal and cardiovascular function to the body. This allows the body to reset itself and begin healing the damage that was done in the body due to chronic stress cycles.

Research performed by Taylor and Murphy demonstrated that chiropractic adjustments enhanced sensorimotor integration, the body’s ability to sense where it is in space and effectively coordinate complex movement patterns. This improves function in both the brain and the body. Improved spatial intelligence translates into better physical and mental balance, coordination, and mobility. Chiropractic adjustments make you think and move with better speed, skill, and finesse.

References: https://www.alpineclinicofchiropractic.com/2010/09/balance-and-movemen…

Taylor H, Murphy B. Cervical Spine Manipulation Alters Sensorimotor Integration: A Somatosensory evoked potential study. Clin Neurophysiol; 2007;118:391-402

Taylor, H, Murphy B. Altered Sensorimotor Integration with Cervical Spine Manipulation. J Manipulative Physiol Ther; 2008;31:115-126

Learn more:https://www.naturalnews.com/031134_chiropractic_brain_health.html#ixzz1rQEf7xmg

 

Sitting For Long Hours Per Day Takes Years Off Your Life

Can someone exercise and still be a couch potato? That peculiarly modern question motivated a new study from Finland in which a group of healthy, physically active volunteers donned special shorts that measure muscular activity in the legs. The volunteers then went about their daily lives.

All were diligent exercisers. Some ran. Others lifted weights or played soccer. A few Nordic-walked. On one day during the study, they worked out as usual. On another, they did not exercise.

Throughout, the shorts measured how much they actually moved.

A growing body of science suggests that prolonged inactivity, a practice known more familiarly as sitting a lot, is both widespread and unhealthy. In a representative study published last month in The Archives of Internal Medicine, Australian researchers compared medical records and lifestyle questionnaires for more than 220,0000 Australian adults 45 and older.

They found that the more hours the men and women sat every day, the greater their chance of dying prematurely. Those people who sat more than eight hours a day — which other studies have found is about the amount that a typical American sits — had a 15 percent greater risk of dying during the study’s three-year follow-up period than people who sat for fewer than four hours a day.

That increased risk held true in the Australian study even if the people sitting eight hours a day spent at least part of that day exercising.

But that study and many others examining sitting and health have relied on self-reported measures of physical activity, like questionnaires. A few have used accelerometers to determine how many steps people were taking during the day.

No one, though, had directly studied people’s muscular activity during sitting and exercising, outside the artificial environment of an exercise physiology lab, until the Finnish researchers came up with the idea of embedding flexible electrodes into shorts fabric.

Measurement of muscle activity matters. In earlier studies with animals whose legs were immobilized with casts or traction devices, physiologists noticed swift, dramatic and deleterious changes in the levels of certain enzymes in cells throughout the animals’ bodies that affect fat metabolism and blood sugar regulation. The researchers concluded that the lack of muscular contractions in the animals’ legs had caused a chain of biological reactions that led to the alterations in enzyme production.

In the current Finnish study, after volunteers donned the shorts, the electrodes began constantly tracking contractile activity in the quadriceps and hamstring muscles, two of the largest sets of muscles in the body. The volunteers also completed detailed logs about their activities during the days of the study.

The researchers had hypothesized that they would see considerably less muscular inactivity over all on the days the volunteers exercised, says Taija Juutinen Finni, a professor of kinesiology at the University of Jyvaskyla in Finland, who led the study.

But the results did not turn out that way. There was, in fact, virtually no difference in how much time people spent being couch potatoes on the days when they exercised compared with days when they did not. On nonexercise days, about 72 percent of volunteers’ waking time, or about nine hours, was spent sitting.

When they formally exercised, volunteers used about 13 percent more energy over all than on days they didn’t exercise. But they still sat 68 percent of the time.

Surprisingly, how much people exercised or what kind of exercise they chose did not change sitting time. Whether volunteers worked out for less than an hour or for more than 90 minutes, they spent an equivalent amount of time the rest of the day being mostly torpid physically.

It seems that after exercising, the study authors concluded, people “substitute either lighter and/or sedentary activities.”

David W. Dunstan, a professor at the Baker IDI Heart and Diabetes Institute in Australia, who has studied inactivity and wrote an editorial to accompany the new Australian paper, says he found the study fascinating. By measuring muscular inactivity using electromyography, he says, “the measurement is getting closer to the heart of the sitting problem, that being a problem of muscular disuse.”

Dr. Finni agrees. Although she and her colleagues did not look directly at the downstream biochemical effects of the inactivity, she says, their results suggest that normal exercise, which fills so few hours of even active people’s days, “may not be enough in terms of health.”

Of course, exercise remains valuable, she and Dr. Dunstan are both quick to add. It reduces risks for cardiovascular disease and other conditions and burns calories.

But exercise paired with otherwise unalloyed sitting should be avoided, Dr. Dunstan says. “It is important the general public become more conscious about what they do in their nonexercise time,” he says. Almost everybody, he says, “should look for opportunities to reduce their daily sitting time and move more, more often, throughout the day.”

By GRETCHEN REYNOLDS, Columnist
NYTimes

Waist Size Helps Predict Heart Risk In Teenagers

A new study uses waist measurements and body mass index to help predict health risks in teenagers.

Using waist measurements together with body mass index may better predict a teenager’s cardiovascular risk than using B.M.I. alone, a new study finds.

Pediatricians and medical groups routinely use B.M.I. as a measure of unhealthy weight in children.  This index, calculates by dividing a person’s weight in kilograms by the square foot of their height in meters.   It cannot differentiate between fatty and lean tissue. So if you are muscular and use just B.M.I, these measurements would classify you as obese even though you are not.

Some researchers have suggested using either a waist circumference or waist to height ratio to measure health.  A study in Archives of Pediatrics & Adolescent Medicine disputes using either measure alone was not enough.

Dr. Brian W. McCrindle (and colleagues) performed a study at the Hospital for Sick Children in Toronto.  They gathered detailed data on more than 4,000 14- and 15-year-olds. All kids selected had a B.M.I. in the 85th to 95th percentile for their age.  The 85th percentile classified them as overweight.   The 95th percentile classified them as obese.

They took measurements of the waist to height ratios, measured their cholesterol levels (good and bad).   Teenagers whose B.M.I. had put them in the obese category showed a trend toward higher blood pressure with higher waist-to-height ratios.

Waist size should be half of height or less, the researchers found. Above that ratio, they began seeing associations with cardiovascular risk factors.  This is in high school kids.

“While B.M.I. is a useful number,” Dr. McCrindle said, “using it together with waist circumference might give you a better indicator of what someone’s risk is for complications associated with obesity.”

References: Taken from article written by ANAHAD O’CONNOR, Reporter

Runners May Be In Great Shape, But They Are Prone To Injuries

By most estimates, nearly 70 percent of runners will become injured. While many of their injuries will appear minor, they can become more serious over time if not properly treated.

Running injuries may impact other areas of the body as well. Because I am an extremity expert as well as a chiropractor, I am trained to look at the body.   I want to identify the true source of the problem treat any malfunction in the body and develop a training or rehabilitation program to solve it.

Among the most common running-elated injuries are:

  • Runner’s Knee – This is the most common running-related injury. Known as patello-femoral pain, and sometimes diagnosed as chondromalacia of the patella, runner’s knee is essentially irritation of the cartilage of the kneecap. The condition results in pitting or fissuring of the cartilage to varying degrees. While running, various mechanical conditions may predispose runners to a poorly tracking kneecap. This can result in irritation and/or damage to the kneecap. Runners will notice pain near the kneecap, especially after sitting for extended periods of time with knees bent or while walking down stairs or downhill. Appropriate treatment involves eliminating or modifying activities that cause the pain; correcting improper biomechanics that allow the injury to arise; and avoiding positions that further irritate the condition, such as sitting for prolonged periods of time.
  • Iliotibial Band Syndrome – Symptoms of this syndrome include pain or aching on the outside of the knee, usually occurring in the middle or at the end of a run. When you flex and extend your knee, the iliotibial band, which runs along the outside of the thigh, can become irritated from repetitive rubbing over the outside of the knee. There are several causes of this syndrome, including weak gluteal muscles, bowed legs, over-pronation of the foot, leg length discrepancy, and running on uneven surfaces. Running on a circular track may also contribute to the problem. As with other running injuries, athletes should decrease their training regimen. In addition, they should also add stretches for the ouside of their thigh to their warm-up program, avoid running on uneven or circular track surfaces, and some should wear motion control running shoes.
  • Shin Splints – Also called medial tibial stress syndrome, “shin splints” refers to pain occurring in either the front or inside portions of the lower leg. Tenderness extends along the length of the lower leg at either of the surfaces. Those most at risk for shin splints are beginning runners who are not yet used to the stresses of running or who have not stretched or strengthened properly. To care for shin splints, runners should decrease their training, and begin with ice and rest, later adding strengthening of their lower leg muscles. They may use swimming and biking as alternative forms of exercise. If symptoms persist, runners should consult their physicians.
  • Achilles Tendinitis – The Achilles tendon is the connection between the heel and the muscles of the lower leg. Several factors contribute to the development of Achilles tendinitis, including excessive hill running, sudden increases in training, and improper shoes. One of the major factors is excessive tightness of the posterior muscles of the leg, including the calf muscles and the hamstrings. Runners with this condition should reduce their running. They can use ice and gentle stretching to reduce pain and tightness. If not treated properly, Achilles tendinitis can develop into a chronic problem.
  • Heel Pain (Heel Spurs and Plantar Fasciitis) – The most common heel problems are caused by strain of the plantar fascia, which extends from the heel to the toes. Strain in this tissue can become very painful, especially with the first steps of the day. The condition can cause swelling at the origin of the plantar fascia at the heel. The pain is most noticeable when the foot flattens during weightbearing or when pushing off with the toes during walking or running, and it is usually located near the heel. The problems tend to occur in flat, flexible feet and in high arched, stiff feet. Left untreated, the pain can spread around the heel. Treatment should include a decrease in the intensity and duration of running workouts. Runners should also evaluate their running shoes for excessive wear and for proper fit. The wrong shoe for a foot type can worsen biomechanical flaws and cause plantar fasciitis.

Runners can take several precautions to prevent being sidelined because of an injury. While some of these steps might seem time-consuming or expensive, they are a good way to keep you on the right track.

  • Prepare for exercise/activities – Understand what muscle groups will be used and slowly start conditioning them by strengthening them. Talk with a PM&R physician to determine the appropriate type of exercises.
  • Properly stretch muscles before running – Muscles and joints need to warm up before beginning a run. Also be sure to allow for a “cooling down” period afterward.
  • Use an appropriate running shoe – There are several brands and models of running shoes. Make sure you are using the type best suited for your feet and your running style. Running shoes should also be replaced regularly. Consult a specialty running store to choose an appropriate shoe.
  • Incorporate hard days and easy days into your training program – Mileage should only be increased approximately 10 percent each week. Runners should make sure to decrease their mileage slightly every third week as a way to allow for recovery prior to additional mileage increases. Runners should also be patient with their development, being careful not to push themselves too far or too fast.
Some information provided by the 2012 American Academy of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation: https://www.aapmr.org/patients/conditions/msk/Pages/runfact.aspx

YIPS Makes Putting Hard To Do

Yips are involuntary wrist spasms that occur most commonly when golfers are trying to putt. However, the yips can also affect people who play other sports — such as cricket, darts and baseball.

It was once thought that the yips were always associated with performance anxiety. However, it now appears that some people have yips that are caused by a focal dystonia, which is a neurological dysfunction affecting specific muscles.

Some people have found relief from the yips by changing the way they perform the affected task. For example, a right-handed golfer might try putting left-handed.

The involuntary movement associated with the yips may:

  • Occur at the beginning or middle of your stroke
  • Come and go
  • Worsen during high-pressure situtations
  • The yips may result from neurological factors, psychological factors or a combination of both.

Neurological factors
In some people, the yips are a type of focal dystonia, a condition that causes involuntary muscle contractions during a specific task. It’s most likely related to overuse of a certain set of muscles, similar to writer’s cramp. Anxiety worsens the effect.

Psychological factors
In a pressure situation, some athletes become so anxious and self-focused — over-thinking to the point of distraction — that their ability to execute a skill, like putting, is impaired. Choking is an extreme form of performance anxiety that may compromise a golfer’s game.

A combination of factors
For some people who have a mild degree of focal dystonia, stress, anxiety or high-pressure situations can worsen the condition.

Neurological yips are associated with:

  • Older age
  • More experience playing golf
  • Lower handicap

Psychological yips can be a problem at any age and experience level. When you start to have episodes of the yips, you lose confidence, worry about recurrence and feel anxious whenever you have to putt. These reactions can perpetuate the cycle — your increased yips-related anxiety makes your symptoms worse.

Because the yips may be related to overuse of specific muscles, a change of technique or equipment may help. Possible strategies include:

  • Change your grip. This technique works for many golfers, because it changes the muscles you use to make your putting stroke. However, if you have the type of yips related to performance anxiety, changing your grip likely won’t make much difference.
  • Use a different putter. A longer putter allows you to use more of your arms and shoulders and less of your hands and wrists while putting. Other putters are designed with a special grip to help stabilize the hands and wrists.
  • Mental skills training. Techniques such as relaxation, visualization or positive thinking can help reduce anxiety, increase concentration and ease fear of the yips.

What is Chronic Exertional Compartment Syndrome?

Chronic exertional compartment syndrome is an uncommon, exercise-induced neuromuscular condition that causes pain, swelling and sometimes even disability in affected muscles of your legs or arms.

Anyone can develop chronic exertional compartment syndrome, but it’s more common in athletes who participate in sports that involve repetitive movements, such as running, fast walking, biking and swimming. Chronic exertional compartment syndrome is sometimes called chronic compartment syndrome or exercise-induced compartment syndrome.

Symptoms:

The pain and other symptoms associated with chronic exertional compartment syndrome may be characterized by:

1. Aching, burning or cramping pain in the affected limb — usually the lower leg, but sometimes the thigh, upper arm, forearm or hand

2. Tightness in the affected limb

3. Numbness or tingling in the affected limb

4. Weakness of the affected limb

5. Foot drop, in severe cases, if nerves in your legs are affected

6. Occasionally, swelling or bulging as a result of a muscle hernia

Pain typically happens soon after you start exercising the affected limb, gets progressively worse for as long as you exercise, stops 15 to 30 minutes after the affected limb comes to rest and over time, may begin to persist longer after exercise, possibly lingering for a day or two.

Taking a complete break from exercise may relieve your symptoms, but usually once you take up running again, your symptoms usually come back unless you continue to stretch and do keep up to date with your rehabilitative exercises.

If you experience unusual pain, swelling, weakness, loss of sensation, or soreness related to exercise or sports activities, talk to your doctor because these symptoms may be associated with conditions that require emergency medical treatment. Don’t try to exercise through the pain, as that may lead to permanent muscle or nerve damage — and jeopardize continued participation in your favorite sports.

Sometimes chronic exertional compartment syndrome is mistaken for shin splints. If you think you have shin splints but they don’t get better with self-care, talk to your doctor.

What are the causes?

Your arms and legs have several groupings, or compartments, of muscles, blood vessels and nerves. Each of these compartments is encased by a thick layer of connective tissue called fascia (FASH-ee-uh), which supports the compartments and holds the tissues within each compartment in place. The fascia is inelastic, which means it has little ability to stretch.

In chronic exertional compartment syndrome, exercise or even repetitive muscle contraction causes the tissue pressure within a compartment to increase to an abnormally high level. But because the fascia can’t stretch, the tissues in that compartment aren’t able to expand sufficiently under the increased pressure. Imagine shaking up a soda bottle but leaving the cap on — an enormous amount of pressure builds up.

As the pressure builds up within one of your muscle compartments, with no outlet for release, nerves and blood vessels are compressed. Blood flow may then decrease, causing tissues to get inadequate amounts of oxygen-rich blood, a condition known as ischemia (is-KE-me-uh). Nerves and muscles may sustain damage.

Experts aren’t sure why exercise or muscle contraction creates this excessive pressure in some people, leading to chronic exertional compartment syndrome. Some experts suggest that biomechanics — how you move, such as landing styles when you jog — may have a role. Other causes may include having enlarged muscles, an especially thick or inelastic fascia, or high pressure within your veins (venous hypertension).

In chronic exertional compartment syndrome, exercise or even repetitive muscle contraction causes the tissue pressure within a compartment to increase to an abnormally high level. But because the fascia can’t stretch, the tissues in that compartment aren’t able to expand sufficiently under the increased pressure. Imagine shaking up a soda bottle but leaving the cap on — an enormous amount of pressure builds up.

As the pressure builds up within one of your muscle compartments, with no outlet for release, nerves and blood vessels are compressed. Blood flow may then decrease, causing tissues to get inadequate amounts of oxygen-rich blood, a condition known as ischemia (is-KE-me-uh). Nerves and muscles may sustain damage.

Experts aren’t sure why exercise or muscle contraction creates this excessive pressure in some people, leading to chronic exertional compartment syndrome. Some experts suggest that biomechanics — how you move, such as landing styles when you jog — may have a role. Other causes may include having enlarged muscles, an especially thick or inelastic fascia, or high presse within your veins (venous hypertension).

What are the risk factors?

The condition is most common in athletes under 40, although people of any age can develop chronic exertional compartment syndrome.

People most at risk of developing chronic exertional compartment syndrome are those who engage in exercise that involves repetitive motions or activity. Young female athletes may be at particular risk, for reasons unknown.

Risk factors include engaging in such sports, exercises and activities as:

  • Running
  • Football
  • Soccer
  • Biking
  • Tennis
  • Gymnastics

Overuse of your muscles or overtraining — that is, working out too intensely or too frequently — also can raise your risk of chronic exertional compartment syndrome.

Chronic exertional compartment syndrome isn’t a life-threatening condition and usually doesn’t cause any lasting or permanent damage if you seek appropriate treatment. However, if you continue to exercise despite pain, the repeated increases in compartment pressure can lead to muscle, nerve and blood vessel damage. As a result, you may develop permanent numbness or weakness in affected muscles.

Perhaps the biggest complication of untreated chronic exertional compartment syndrome is its impact on participation in your favorite sports — the pain may prevent you from being active.


Don’t try to exercise through your pain. Limit your physical activities to those that don’t cause pain. For example, if running bothers your legs, you may be able to swim. Use ice or take omega 3s until you can see your doctor and make sure this is NOT an emergency.

The following basic sports and fitness guidelines can help protect your health and safety during exercise:

  • Warm up before starting exercise.
  • Cool down when you’re done exercising.
  • Stop if you’re in pain.
  • Check with your doctor before starting a new exercise program if you have any health issues.
  • Eat a healthy, balanced diet.
  • Stay hydrated.
  • Engage in a variety of physical activities.

Sections of this article are published on https://www.mayoclinic.com/health/chronic-exertional-compartment-syndrome/DS00789