Why my calf pain doesn’t go away
If you are asking yourself ‘why is it taking so long for the pain to go away’ then you might want to consider the following. When the muscle tears the body attempts to repair the injured fibers by sending cells to reattach the torn ends of the fibers.
It reacts similar to repairing an open wound. Like having a cut at the bottom of your foot. If you keep on walking on it, you will shear away the cells that are healing and closing the wound. The more you walk or run through the pain, the longer it will take to heal.If the pain returns every time you start running again, you have missed the most vital aspect of the cause of the muscle tear. The muscle length must return to normal before you return to participating.
Then you decide its a good idea to ‘rest your calf’, so you take a few days off. Eventually the pain in the calf goes away (usually 3 days), but when you try running again, the pain just returns. If the muscle length is not restored, you will rip the wound wide open and start from the beginning again. This is the most common reason why patients consult us, because they get stuck in this cycle of repair and breakdown. Some patients just give up and ‘accept it’, whereas others decide to ask your expertise.
If you are taking anti-inflammatory medication for the calf muscle tear, STOP taking them. Inflammation is the body’s natural way of healing the injured muscle fibers. The medication is preventing this repair process from taking place, not to mention, masking the effect of the trauma on the tissue when you return to running while still taking anti-inflammatory medications.