Muscle Strain Treatment
Call 911 if:
- There's significant swelling, pain, fever, bleeding, or open cuts.
- The person heard a “popping” sound or can’t walk, and there is no other way that they can safely and quickly be transported to a medical facility.
1. Control Swelling and Prevent Further Injury With PRICE
Protect by applying an elastic bandage, sling, or splint.
Rest the muscle for at least a day.
Ice immediately, and continue to ice for 10 to 15 minutes every hour, for 2-3 days.
Compress by gently wrapping with an Ace or other elastic bandage. (Don't wrap tightly.)
Elevate injured area above the person's heart level, if possible, for at least 24 hours.
2. Manage Pain and Inflammation
- Take an over-the-counter pain medication like aspirin or ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin). Do not give aspirin to anyone under age 18.
3. Follow Up
- Elevate and ice the area every 3 to 4 hours after the first day.
4. When to Call a Doctor
Call a health care provider if:
- After a day or two the person can't move or put weight on the affected area.
- The injured area is cool, pale, or changes color.
- There is tingling or numbness.
- There is new or severe pain.
- The person needs advice on how (and how soon) to resume normal exercise and activity.