How to prevent muscle strain during workouts

Ankle osteoarthritis is a condition that causes pain and stiffness in the ankle joint. Traditional treatments like joint fusion can limit mobility. An alternative procedure called ankle distraction arthroplasty has been gaining some traction, but how well does it hold up in the long term? 

A recent study by Greenfield et al. (2019) investigated this very question. They conducted a survival analysis of ankle distraction arthroplasty for ankle osteoarthritis. Their findings suggest that this procedure may be a viable option for some patients. 

Key takeaways from the study: 

  • Ankle distraction arthroplasty showed promising results, with an 84% survival rate at 5 years. This is better than some previously reported outcomes. 
  • The study also identified factors that can influence the success of the procedure. Avascular necrosis of the talus (bone death) was associated with a lower survival rate. Additionally, sex may play a role, with the study suggesting potential gender differences in long-term outcomes. 

What this means for patients: 

Ankle distraction arthroplasty offers a potential option for preserving joint mobility in patients with ankle osteoarthritis. This study provides valuable data for surgeons and patients to consider when making treatment decisions. 

Important to note: 

  • This was a retrospective study, meaning researchers analyzed past data. More robust research designs are needed to confirm these findings. 
  • The study involved a relatively small group of patients. Larger studies are necessary to draw more definitive conclusions. 

Overall, this research suggests that ankle distraction arthroplasty may be a valuable tool for treating ankle osteoarthritis. However, more research is needed to solidify its place as a standard treatment option. 

ReferenceGreenfield, S., Matta, K. M., McCoy, T. H., Rozbruch, S. R., & Fragomen, A. (2019). Ankle distraction arthroplasty for ankle osteoarthritis: a survival analysis. Strategies in trauma and limb reconstruction, 14(2), 65.,and%2037%25%20within%205%20years


This blog is for informational purposes only and should not be considered as medical advice. Always consult with a qualified healthcare professional to discuss your individual treatment options.

Image Credit: OrthoBethesda 

Article Author: Gordon Slater| Tandose Sambo 

What is a muscle strain?

The body, like all other mechanical mechanisms, works best when it operates within certain critical boundaries. When the body is overworked or overexerted, you can induce the onset of injuries. A muscle strain is an injury that results from overexerting a muscle, and the result is either an overstretching, or complete tearing of the muscle. 

The severity of the muscle strain will determine the treatment plan that will be required for healing. Muscle strains are very common. Many athletes, dancers and generally active people have experienced muscle strain at some point. Once a proper understanding of how the body works is mastered, it is possible to prevent muscle strains. As long as the body isn’t put into excessive shock without a prior warm up, the body should be able to operate just fine. 

What are the symptoms of muscle strain?

The most notable indication of muscle strain is the feeling of a popping sensation in the site of the strain. This is usually indicating that the muscle is giving way after being overworked. In the case of foot and ankle conditions, the sensations are usually experienced in the ankle region. The strain can occur either in the lower ankle region, or the high ankle region. The classification of the ankle strain is determined by the range of motion that induced the condition. After the stress, there is the onset of pain. Consultation with an orthopaedic specialist will determine the treatment path that will enable the optimum recovery. 

What is the best treatment plan for muscle strain?

While there are some acute orthopaedic conditions that you can treat at home, it is advised that you seek medical care if you suspect that you may have a muscle sprain. The correct diagnosis of your sprain will ensure that you are able to alleviate your pain, minimise further damage to the muscle, and regain full use of the body after healing. What you want is to ensure that you don’t have a recurrent experience and repeat the injury via further straining the weakened site. Where possible, you must pause physical activity and rest. In more severe cases of muscle strain, such as a tear, a surgical procedure will be required. 

Pain is the first sign that there is a problem in the body. Once the strain is diagnosed, your orthopaedic specialist will put you on a pain management plan, in order to ensure that you are more comfortable as you heal. Over the counter drugs are prescribed in instances of acute sprains, and stronger prescription painkillers are prescribed in the case of more severe cases. 

Physical therapy as a treatment, is incorporated once the preliminary treatment has begun. 

What critical supplies can you have on hand to manage a muscle sprain?

Minor muscle strains can be treated at home, and require supplies that you can get from your local pharmacy or in your own home. These include: towels, ice for soothing the area, compression bandages, pillows for elevating the legs and supporting mechanisms such as a brace or crutches. 

Applying the RICE method

The RICE method stands for:

Rest, Ice , Compression , Elevation of the foot

The RICE method is one of the standard orthopaedic treatment conditions for muscle strain. It is a treatment that is used as a countermeasure once a muscle strain has occurred. For the more seasoned active persons, preventative methods are utilised in order to prevent muscle strain. 

Prevention always preserves the health of the body. By taking the time to heal, incorporating proper warm up exercises into your regime, and strengthening the body via activities such as weightlifting, and having a good diet, you can keep your body in great shape. 

If you are in doubt, you can consult with your orthopaedic specialist. They will be able to guide you to the right regime that will keep you in optimum health. 

Article Reference: 

Healthline: Muscle Strain 

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Dr. Gordon Slater

Dr. Slater is one of the first foot and ankle surgeons in Australia to adopt minimally invasive surgical techniques. He routinely uses MIS to treat a range of conditions, including bunions.

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Dr Gordon Slater is a highly-skilled surgeon specialising in foot and ankle conditions and sports injuries. Dr Slater is one of the first foot and ankle surgeons in Australia to adopt minimally invasive surgical techniques. He routinely uses MIS to treat a range of conditions, including bunions. MIS  has many advantages including shorter operating times, reduced post-operative pain, reduced risk of infection, minimal scarring and better cosmetic outcomes.

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