What are the treatments for the injury?
Apply the RICE technique: Rest, Ice, Compression and Immobilization, and Elevation.
Rest means to restrict movement and weight-bearing in the injured area. A splint can be used if necessary.
Ice refers to the application of an ice pack or cold compress to the affected area.
Compression involves placing a bandage lightly around the injured area to decrease swelling. Immobilization means to avoid unnecessary movement of the affected area, particularly weight-bearing activity.
Elevatation means to keep the injured area raised above the heart if possible.
Medicines that reduce pain and inflammation, such as aspirin or ibuprofen, may be taken. Aspirin should never be given to children 19 years of age or younger, since it is associated with a disorder known as Reye's syndrome.
What are the side effects of the treatments?
Pain medicines and anti-inflammatory medicines may cause stomach upset or allergic reaction.
What happens after treatment for the injury?
If a certain activity causes repeated muscle strains, a person should strengthen the muscles in a way that does not cause continual damage. A healthcare provider can recommend an exercise program or physical therapy. Any new or worsening symptoms should be reported to the healthcare provider.