Sprains and strains: Causes

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Understand how sprains and strains occur

Knowing the causes of sprains and strains can help you identify these injuries, and therefore guide you to the most appropriate treatment for your patient.

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Sprains and strains have specific causes

Soft-tissue injury involves a sprain, strain or direct blow to a muscle, tendon and/or ligament.1

  • Sprains are caused by abnormal or excessive force applied to a joint1,2
  • Strains occur when a muscle is stretched beyond its limit or has contracted too strongly1,2
  • Overuse injuries, from repetitive friction, pulling, twisting or compression may also occur1
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Sport is a common cause of sprains and strains, but not the only one

Soft-tissue injuries are common in sport.1,2 Indeed, muscle strains or overuse injuries account for around 50% of all injuries suffered during sport.3,4

However, these injuries can also occur through simple, everyday activities like over-stretching, tripping and falling or playing with the kids.2,3

Risk factors for sprains and strains

Understanding sprains and strains

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Signs and symptoms

Explore an overview of how to recognise sprains and strains and when to refer patients.

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Learn how sprains and strains can be managed.

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Joint and OA pain

Overview of joint and osteoarthritic pain

Find out about how joint and osteoarthritic pain are, and meet two patients with joint pain.

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Voltaren Triple Effect

Voltaren Emulgel 1% for strains and sprains

Relieves pain, reduces inflammation and speeds up the natural healing process.4–6

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Patient care resources

Access a leaflet for your patients which can help them understand the causes of muscle pain and how best to treat it.

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