Understanding Shin Splints

By admin
October 1, 2013

Shin splints, or medial tibial stress syndrome, are a painful condition often found in athletes or people who regularly exercise. The pain from this condition is typically exacerbated by activity; if it persists while you are at rest, you're likely suffering from a different condition entirely. Keep reading to find out more about shin splints and how to treat them.


There are a wide variety of factors that can contribute to shin pain. Poor shoes, failing to warm up with stretching, highly-arched feet, flat feet, and hard or crowned surfaces are several common causes. Other sources include the overuse of the tibilialis muscles and the inflexibility of the calves (specifically the soleus and gastronemius).

Compartment syndrome is a less common but far more serious possibility. It occurs when swelling in the anterior compartment of the leg becomes constricted by the rigid connective tissues surrounding it. This is the only contributor that indicates surgical treatment may be needed.


The first thing anyone suffering from shin splints should do is to cease the exercise that caused them. They can also be treated through icing, taping, and non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs. Physical therapy is yet another option, and is perfect for strengthening and stretching the affected muscles without adding more stress to them.

If the above treatment options are ineffective or if the pain only keeps getting worse, immediate medical attention may be required. For example, if shin splints are occurring because of compartment syndrome, surgical measures may be necessary.

If shin splints are significantly painful or impacting your daily life, you should contact a board certified medical professional for instruction and/or treatment.

Shin Splint Treatment in Napa and Vacaville

If you want to learn more about shin splints and their treatment, contact us today to schedule a consultation. We have offices in Napa (707.258.2547) and Vacaville (707.446.6206). We look forward to hearing from you!

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