The best way to deal with any injury is to practice biofeedback. However, if there has been a complete rupture of the muscle/tendon patients my require surgery to gain the best long-term outcome followed by a set rehabilitation programme combined with osteopathy treatment.
10 – week rehabilitation programme
Firstly, consult your osteopath or NHS A+E (if treatment required asap).
Immobilise your arm with a sling to reduce muscle movement and rest up to let your body start its natural healing process (Inflammatory cascade).
Use a cold flannel over the affected area for 15mins, several times a day to reduce swelling and promote recovery.
In guidance with your doctor or pharmacist you can administer nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs. Try to avoid these in the first 48 hours of your injury as research shows this can affect the healing process.
Week 2 and 3:
Continue to immobilise the arm with a sling during the day.
Use painkillers as directed by a doctor/pharmacist. If you still have lots of swelling continue to use a cold flannel 15 mins, several times a day. This will help with the healing and reduce pain sensations.
Introduce exercises, if having surgery, wait till afterwards. Start with gentle arm curls and wrist movements forward and back with stretching of the forearm.
Depending on how your recovery is going you can start hand gripping exercises.
If your rehabilitation is going to well and with consultation with your osteopath, you could discontinue using a sling.
Hopefully at this stage you no longer require additional help, but you can continue to use painkillers as directed by a doctor/pharmacist.
Continue your range of movement exercises with the wrist and elbow, gradually increasing repetitions. Once you can perform these with ease then include resisted exercises by using an elastic band to build strength back into the forearm, arm and shoulder.
Keep progressing range of movement exercises, active exercises, static and resisted exercises.
Work on building strength exercises to the muscles in the arm and forearm.
Continue exercises from week 4 progressing in range and intensity. Start to introduce sport specific drills or if this injury has affected your work (builder, gardener, hairdresser, dancer etc) then work- related drills as appropriate to return to work.
Advanced strengthening exercises- isotonic shoulder and bicep exercises. Gradually return to full activity (including sport) as appropriate.
10 weeks-6 months: Continue your rehabilitation exercises for the best outcome. Being patient and taking the time to recover is key. If you experience pain during the exercises, please discuss this with your practitioner.
Have you succumbed to a sports injury? Need advice, treatment and a treatment plan to stop you worrying about your injury. Book your osteopathy appointment to get answers.