The musculoskeletal system consists of the connective tissues, ligament, muscles, tendons and bones that help in providing stability, shape, support and protection to the body. Musculoskeletal injuries are a group of painful disorders that arise due to wear and tear resulting in impairment in the functioning of the musculoskeletal system.
The common causes responsible for developing musculoskeletal injuries are:
- Adopting a fixed posture
- Repetitive movement of the limbs
- Excessive burden on specific muscle groups
- High pressure on body parts
- Forceful movement
- Performing repetitive tasks in quick succession
The common symptoms in people with musculoskeletal injuries include:
- Pain in limbs, neck and back
- Swelling, numbness, tingling sensation and fatigue of the affected muscle group
- A few individuals may experience a combination of different symptoms due to multiple injuries
A detailed medical history along with laboratory and other special tests are employed to confirm the diagnosis. These tests help to identify the damage to the nerve or muscle. Electroneuromyography (ENMG) is one of the common tests used to evaluate muscle and/or nerve damage. Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scan is employed to view the tendons, ligament, and muscles and assists in diagnosis.
The treatment of musculoskeletal injuries includes both non-surgical and surgical methods. Non-surgical methods are the initial line of management and include:
- Restriction of movement of the injured part
- Heat or cold treatment that may relieve pain and accelerate repair process
- Exercise and physical therapy to help in stretching the injured muscle
- Medication such as anti-inflammatory drugs and analgesics
In cases where non-surgical methods are not effective, surgical repair of the underlying muscle, tendon, or ligament is recommended.