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Anon. asked...

Tags: sports

Hello, I do a lot of running and over the past few weeks after Xmas my left shin has been sore. This doesn't hurt during day to day life but whenever running I can feel a pain and furthermore when I run my finger along the shin there is an area of greater pain that the rest leading me to believe I have a stress fracture. I had one c5 years ago in the same leg and this feels very similar. I wanted to see a sports specialist for advice/xray to ensure this is the case. I work in London and wondered what the best way to go about this was? I have't been to a GP as the last time I have a c5 they said just go to A&E.

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The Answer

The symptoms that you describe can be linked to a Stress Fracture but also to a condition called Shin Splints.

Both of these injuries can occur as a result of exercise where there has been overuse of the leg muscles over a continued period of time. This occurs when the muscles become fatigued and are unable to absorb stress or repeated episodes of shock on impact.

Symptoms often include generalised tenderness and pain which over time may become easier to pinpoint the source of pain as well as swelling and difficulty walking etc…

Injury is more likely if you have been overtraining or running on hard services or even wearing unsupportive footwear whilst participating in sport.

Treatment usually involves resting initially, refraining from impact sports, analgesia and ice. As healing occurs gentle exercise can be commenced such as swimming or cycling.

If the symptoms like in your case persist for more than a few weeks you would be encouraged to seek medical assistance by means of your GP or a Minor Injury Unit.

It would be possible for practitioners in these facilities to refer you for an X-Ray or MRI to exclude fractures or other types of trauma.

We would suggest seeing your GP as they may be able to refer you for investigations as well as for treatment such as physiotherapy if need be.

There are some walk- in GP centres which you may wish to attend if you are unable to be seen by your GP. Some of these walk- in GP services however are privately run.

The other option available to you is to present yourself to the Minor Injuries department at a hospital within London near to where you work.

Answered by the Health at Hand nurses  

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