Chronic Exertional Compartment Syndrome

Chronic Exertional Compartment Syndrome

It is a condition that is characterized by pain, swelling and rarely disability in arm or leg muscles. It is usually occur in exercise-induced muscles. It mostly occur in athletes.


Symptoms are as follows:Compartment Syndrome causes symptoms Treatment

  • Pain of burning/aching type in affected compartment of muscles usually lower leg
  • Affected limb experience tightness
  • Numbness and tingling
  • Foot drop rarely
  • Swelling or bulging sometimes because of muscle hernia

The exact cause of this condition is rarely understood. It occur due to the unable expanding of fascia covering the muscles after exercise when muscles expand in volume. Sometimes specific gait could lead to the development of chronic exertional compartment syndrome.


This condition don’t lead to life-threatening or fatal consequences. However, it can be extremely debilitating.


Diagnosis of this condition depends upon detailed medical history and complete general physical examination of patient. Some imaging tests can also be considered like MRI or near infrared spectroscopy (NIRS). Compartment pressure testing is considered as a gold standard test to diagnose this condition.


Treatment options include:

  • Medications to relief pain
  • Physical therapy
  • Massage
  • Break from exercise
  • fasciotomy is a surgical option which is considered sometimes.
Home Remedies
  • Use orthotics as they can prevent the injury to happen
  • Stretching the aching limb after exercise
  • Do pauses in your physical activities.
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