Cold & Hot Reusable Compress
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The DynaPro Reusable Hot/Cold Pack is a versatile non-toxic compress that you can use for both hot and cold therapies and for treatment of both acute and chronic injuries.
A quad contusion (or quadriceps contusion) is a contusion injury to the quadricep muscles at the front of the thigh. This injury occurs when the thigh sustains a direct blow that crushes those muscles against the thigh bone.
Typically, despite the damage to the muscle, its function is not usually completely lost. If the contusion leads to bleeding into the surrounding tissue (haematoma), then swelling and tenderness will be present together with severe pain on passive stretching and active contraction.
A quad contusion is usually a sports related injury and can be very painful. A sometimes used colloquial name for this injury is a “charley”.
‘There are 2 types of quad contusion injury:
Of these two types, the intramuscular injury results in more pain and loss of range of motion of the thigh. However, both types of injury can result in localized bleeding and tissue damage in the quadriceps area
This type of injury is common in sports that involve a lot of direct contact between athletes (e.g. football, rugby, basketball and hockey) or collisions with fixtures on or around the playing field (e.g. soccer or lacrosse). In fact, it is the most common acute thigh injury in contact sports such as these.
A common event that leads to quadricep muscle contusion injuries is when one player’s knee strikes the quadricep muscles of another player. This can happen, for example, during a collision between them.
It can also happen if the patient’s thigh directly strikes an object while he or she is falling, such as in skiing or snowboarding.
The symptoms of quad contusions are usually relatively severe. This is because the quadricep muscles that are most vulnerable to a blow are lying against a large bone (the femur) . They have little or no room for movement to absorb a powerful blow from the front.
Most of the symptoms are caused by rupture of the muscle fibres. Initially, only negligible symptoms are present. However, after 24 hours, haematoma formation within the muscle causes pain, swelling, stiffness and functional impairment of the quadriceps muscle.
Doctors classify quad contusion injuries into three categories. These are first, second and third degree, going from least to most severe.
The descriptions of each category, and the associated symptoms, are as follows:
Individuals experiencing some or all of these symptoms after a blow to the front of the thigh may be suffering a quad contusion. The next step should be to call a doctor (preferably one with sports medicine experience) and make an appointment for an examination and possible diagnosis.
Quad contusions, if left untreated, can sometimes develop into more severe injuries. One of these is myositis ossificans. This is a condition in which bone tissue forms inside the muscle.
Another possible complication is compartment syndrome. This is a condition whereby a critical increase in the pressure within a confined compartmental space leads to a fall in the perfusion pressure to the tissue within that compartment.
Hence, individuals who think they have experienced a quad contusion should seek medical help without delay.
With rest and the correct treatment, most quadriceps contusions heal spontaneously within a few weeks.
To treat a quad contusion, most doctors will suggest the following:
Some patients may need pain relief with non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs like naproxen and ibuprofen as well as with paracetamol. Patients should refrain from applying heat to the contusion, since this can make the swelling worse.
Surgery is only rarely needed and this is reserved for cases which are either very severe or do not get better with conservative treatment.
As we have mentioned above, this is one of the most common acute thigh injuries in contact sports. It can also be among the most painful. Consequently, it is worthwhile to provide some suggestions on how athletes in particular can try to prevent it in the first place:
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