Shin splints (also known as Medial tibial stress syndrome or tibial periostitis) is a common injury that affects athletes who engage in running sports or physical activity. This condition is characterized by pain in the lower part of the leg just above the ankle and is caused by repeated trauma to the tissue contained in the anterior compartment of the leg and the tissue surrounding the tibial bone. Ignoring these injuries may result in a more serious condition such as a stress fracture of the bones.
Shin splints or MTSS can usually be attributed to overloading the muscles of the lower extremities or to biomechanical discrepancies. Though the exact cause of this condition is not known, it is usually precipitated by a change in running routine, change of footwear and/or a change in running surface. In addition, a combination of weak musculature made to overwork plus biomechanical insufficiency underlies most cases of shin splints.
Thus, muscle imbalance, including weak core muscles, inflexibility and tightness in the musculature of the lower extremities may contribute to MTSS.
A typical clinical presentation of this condition involves pain, palpable tenderness, and possible swelling.
MTSS is initially treated with rest, ice to reduce inflammation, NSAIDs, and Physiotherapy.