Sports Medicine
A Crucial Period
Good Pain, Bad Pain
On Your Knees
Secondary Injuries
Imaging Technology
What's Sciatica?
The Female Athlete
Putting Your Feet First
Itis Schmitis
Too Much, Too Soon
Under the Influence
What's Goin' On?
Think Inches, Not Pounds
Preventing Vaginitis
That Painful Pull
Athlete's Heart
Exercise & Arthritis
Chilled to the Bone
Measuring Body Fat
Exercise and Your Breasts
Choosing a Sports Doctor
Lean on Me (Shoulder)
Exercise & Anemia
Exercise Abuse
Pelvis Sighting
Hand Aid
It's All in the Wrist
Back in Action
Altitude Adjustment
Tennis Elbow, Anyone?
Exercising in the Heat
Agony of the Feet
Restless Legs
Night Time Cramps
Birth Control Concerns
No Periods, No Babies?
Post Partum Prescription
Weight Loss Mystery
Undesirable Cooldown
To Brew Or Not To Brew
Fitness After Baby
Biking and Back Pain
Swimmer's Shoulder
A Hidden Athlete
Avoiding Osteoporosis
Drug Testing
Maximum Heart Rate
Headway Against Headaches
Torn Rotator Cuff
Fat Figures
Bloody Urine
Sag Story
Lackluster Leg
Bothersome Bulge
Gaining in Years
Taking It On the Shin
Aching Ankles
Hoop Help
Tender Toes
Meals For Muscle
Growing Pains
Hot Tips
High Altitude PMS
Personal Bests
Air Pollution
Ankle Blues
Heartbreak Heel
Yeast Relief

Taking It On The Shin

Hoops for the future

Q: I am a high school basketball player and will most likely play at the college level. Running plays a big part in my training but shin splints seem to hinder my progress.

Is it okay to keep running on painful shin splints or will they one day result in stress fractures which take a very long time to heal? What can I do for prevention and treatment of my agonizing shin splints?

Westfield, NJ

A: Shin splints are a royal pain, as anyone who has experienced them can readily testify. It is difficult to be precise about what causes shin splints because it is a "wastebasket" term that can mean any one of several different conditions, including muscle inflammation, periostitis (inflammation of the muscle-bone connection), tendinitis, compartment syndromes, and stress fractures.

These conditions result from overuse or overtraining: doing too much, too soon, on too hard a surface. Inadequate stretching, worn-out shoes, and improper biomechanics (body alignment) can also be contributing factors.

For an accurate diagnosis, see a sports medicine physician, particularly if you have increasing pain during workouts (stress fracture) or numbness and/or tingling of your ankle or foot (compartment syndrome).

Compartment syndrome is a swelling of tissue in part of the leg that can lead to permanent nerve and muscle damage. If you have any numbness or tingling in your shin, you should see a doctor immediately

You are right to be concerned about "running through" the pain and ending up with a stress fracture. This can certainly happen, and a stress fracture will result in a much longer and questionable recovery.

What is the best way to treat shin splints?

Next | 1 | 2

Order Now!
Order The Athletic Woman's Survival Guide
Table of Contents

Foreword: Billie Jean King

Comments by Barb Harris
Editor in Chief,
Shape Magazine

General Health
Common Medical Problems
Dental Health
Infectious Disease
Sexual Health
Emotional Well-Being
Eating Disorders
Alcohol & Other Drugs
Environmental Health

The information in this web site is for educational purposes only and is not providing medical or professional advice. It should not be used for diagnosing or treating a health problem or disease. It is not a substitute for professional medical care. If you have or suspect you might have any health problems, you should consult a physician.

Copyright 2000 - Sports Doctor, Inc.