Muscles : The Veps delivers relaxation and muscle tone
Muscle contraction pain can be quite common for us all (ref Wikipedia, August 2015).
Contracture, a term most commonly used in the world of sports, is the involuntary contraction of a number of muscle fibres within an individual muscle or muscle group, over an unusually long period of time, and is often painful.
On clinical examination the contracture is easily recognised as it is hard and painful to the touch and when palpated (hard point). Indurated areas can feel like balls or ropes within the muscle. The muscle is painful during either passive stretching or voluntary contraction.
Contractures can occur:
- Following over-training, muscle overuse, overwork;
- As a defence mechanism to trauma, accompanied by somatic dysfunction and reflex muscle compensation to pain, the muscle contracting to block the traumatised area, as can be observed with lumbago and torticollis;
- Secondary to a muscle injury such as a contusion, elongation, rupture or tear; in such an event, the muscle will contract to protect itself and prevent the damage from worsening;
- With certain muscular diseases; in these cases, the muscle may also be damaged.
A contracture most often occurs at the level of the calf muscles, thighs, buttocks, lower back, vertebral channels and neck. The contracted muscle shortens over a prolonged period of time, resulting in pain and impotence and maintains a permanent tension on its tendons, which can lead to tendinitis. If the muscle continues to be stressed, stretching or tearing can occur.
Proposed treatments generally include total rest, heat application, massage, physiotherapy, occasionally medical treatment involving muscle relaxants and pain killers.