Article

Effects of forefoot running on chronic exertional compartment syndrome: A case series

International journal of sports physical therapy 12/2011; 6(4):312-21.
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT

Chronic exertional compartment syndrome (CECS) is a condition that occurs almost exclusively with running whereby exercise increases intramuscular pressure compromising circulation, prohibiting muscular function, and causing pain in the lower leg. Currently, a lack of evidence exists for the effective conservative management of CECS. Altering running mechanics by adopting forefoot running as opposed to heel striking may assist in the treatment of CECS, specifically with anterior compartment symptoms.
The purpose of this case series is to describe the outcomes for subjects with CECS through a systematic conservative treatment model focused on forefoot running. Subject one was a 21 y/o female with a 4 year history of CECS and subject two was a 21 y/o male, 7 months status-post two-compartment right leg fasciotomy with a return of symptoms and a new onset of symptoms on the contralateral side.
Both subjects modified their running technique over a period of six weeks. Kinematic and kinetic analysis revealed increased step rate while step length, impulse, and peak vertical ground reaction forces decreased. In addition, leg intracompartmental pressures decreased from pre-training to post-training. Within 6 weeks of intervention subjects increased their running distance and speed absent of symptoms of CECS. Follow-up questionnaires were completed by the subjects at 7 months following intervention; subject one reported running distances up to 12.87 km pain-free and subject two reported running 6.44 km pain-free consistently 3 times a week.
This case series describes a potentially beneficial conservative management approach to CECS in the form of forefoot running instruction. Further research in this area is warranted to further explore the benefits of adopting a forefoot running technique for CECS as well as other musculoskeletal overuse complaints.

  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Anterior compartment pressures of the leg as well as kinematic and kinetic measures are significantly influenced by running technique. It is unknown whether adopting a forefoot strike technique will decrease the pain and disability associated with chronic exertional compartment syndrome (CECS) in hindfoot strike runners. For people who have CECS, adopting a forefoot strike running technique will lead to decreased pain and disability associated with this condition. Case series; Level of evidence, 4. Ten patients with CECS indicated for surgical release were prospectively enrolled. Resting and postrunning compartment pressures, kinematic and kinetic measurements, and self-report questionnaires were taken for all patients at baseline and after 6 weeks of a forefoot strike running intervention. Run distance and reported pain levels were recorded. A 15-point global rating of change (GROC) scale was used to measure perceived change after the intervention. After 6 weeks of forefoot run training, mean postrun anterior compartment pressures significantly decreased from 78.4 ± 32.0 mm Hg to 38.4 ± 11.5 mm Hg. Vertical ground-reaction force and impulse values were significantly reduced. Running distance significantly increased from 1.4 ± 0.6 km before intervention to 4.8 ± 0.5 km 6 weeks after intervention, while reported pain while running significantly decreased. The Single Assessment Numeric Evaluation (SANE) significantly increased from 49.9 ± 21.4 to 90.4 ± 10.3, and the Lower Leg Outcome Survey (LLOS) significantly increased from 67.3 ± 13.7 to 91.5 ± 8.5. The GROC scores at 6 weeks after intervention were between 5 and 7 for all patients. One year after the intervention, the SANE and LLOS scores were greater than reported during the 6-week follow-up. Two-mile run times were also significantly faster than preintervention values. No patient required surgery. In 10 consecutive patients with CECS, a 6-week forefoot strike running intervention led to decreased postrunning lower leg intracompartmental pressures. Pain and disability typically associated with CECS were greatly reduced for up to 1 year after intervention. Surgical intervention was avoided for all patients.
    Full-text · Article · Mar 2012 · The American Journal of Sports Medicine
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Given the general public's overall lack of knowledge about radiation and their heightened fear of its harmful effects, effective communication of radiation risks is often difficult. This is especially true when it comes to communicating the radiation risks stemming from military operations. Part of this difficulty stems from a lingering distrust of the military that harkens back to the controversy surrounding Veteran exposures to Agent Orange during the Vietnam War along with the often classified nature of many military operations. Additionally, there are unique military exposure scenarios, such as the use of nuclear weapons and combat use of depleted uranium as antiarmor munitions that are not found in the civilian sector. Also, the large, diverse nature of the military makes consistent risk communication across the vast and widespread organization very difficult. This manuscript highlights and discusses both the common and the distinctive challenges of effectively communicating military radiation risks, to include communicating through the media. The paper also introduces the Army's Health Risk Communication Program and its role in assisting in effective risk communication efforts. The authors draw on their extensive collective experience to share 3 risk communication success stories that were accomplished through the innovative use of a matrixed, team approach that combines both health physics and risk communication expertise.
    Full-text · Article · Jul 2012
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Barefoot running is a trend among running enthusiasts that is the subject of much controversy. At this time, benefits appear to be more speculative and anecdotal than evidence based. Additionally, the risk of injuries is not well established. A PubMed search was undertaken for articles published in English from 1980 to 2011. Additional references were accrued from reference lists of research articles. While minimal data exist that definitively support barefoot running, there are data lending support to the argument that runners should use a forefoot strike pattern in lieu of a heel strike pattern to reduce ground reaction forces, ground contact time, and step length. Whether there is a positive or negative effect on injury has yet to be determined. Unquestionably, more research is needed before definitive conclusions can be drawn.
    Full-text · Article · Nov 2012 · Sports Health A Multidisciplinary Approach
Show more