shin pain recovery questions

I’m taking some time off from running until the pain from my left shin is gone, which was caused by shin splints. I’m not sure if it’s a stress fracture or not; all I know is that I haven’t done any running for one fulll week and the pain is still there, even when walking and the cold makes it worse.

I’ve been taking anti-inflammatories for three weeks now (or even more) and I stopped taking them about two days ago because I thought I was on them for too long, but it kinda hurts to walk. My question is: do anti-inflammatories just ease the pain, or do they actually enhance the healing process as well? This will help me decide whether I should keep taking them or not.

Also: Do I start shin strengthening exercises after the pain is gone, or can I start doing them right now?

And finally: Is lifting good or bad for the shin (of course here I’m talking about lifting that involves legs). It doesn’t hurt to do squats for example, but I was just wondering if I’m not supposed to put any load on it, regardless of if it hurts or not. I would assume: do whatever creates no pain, right?

Thanks, help is much appreciated :slight_smile:

Here is my advice. I am not a athletic trainer or a dr. however here are my thoughts.

I believe anti inflamatories enhance the healing process as well as easing the pain. Think of it the same way you would think of ice. You ice after a workout so that it helps stop inflamation so blood will have a easier time flowing instead trying to flow through tight vessles because of the inflamation. I am not sure what the exact mechanism of anti inflamatories is or how exactly they work but that is what they do. If more blood can get to the injured site the better flow of nutrients you will have going to the site to promote the healing process.

With lifting… as you said “do whatever creates no pain”. I think that is important. Make sure there is no pain from the exercise during OR after.

Again, I am no sports medicane professional but that is just my 2 cents.

I think lifting will actually help prevent injury down the road. I could not lift on my ankle during the initial healing process, but after starting to lift on it heavy I have noticed a decrease (actual almost a total absence) of the shin and ankle pains I used to consider normal, as well as muscular tweaks which I aways had problems with.

Resistance band training has helped a lot in this area too.

As for the anti-inflamms, my podiatrist told me to go on a cycle of them (heavily) because the pain was so bad that it hurt constantly and kept me up at night. I THINK I remember doing 1,200 mg a day, but he told me to do it for only two weeks, take a break, then do another two week cycle if needed.

My PT did hydrocortisone cream (by Rx) with ultrasound- this was not particular to my ankle problem, it was basically just another way to do major anti-inflamms and it was very helpful.

Also it might sound ridiculous, but have you ever thought about acupuncture? I was very skeptical at first, but there is definitely something to it.

Yes. Remember activity promotes blood flow which aids in healing. Again nutrient transport. AND… resistance training promotes release of HGH from your endocrine system which also helps in the healing process.

I’ve noticed that my shin experiences NO pain when I lift. It might hurt after, but it’s the normal pain that I get during the day even if I don’t do anything.
I’ll try resistance band exercises too.
Today when I woke up there was actually less pain, so maybe I’ll take a break from anti-inflamatories and keep icing.
Hey, Kras, 1200mg of anti-inflammotories sounds a lot to me!
The ones I was taking were 200mg a day, and the pharmacist told me they were one of the strongest he had (w/out doctor prescription) and asked me if I have a strong stomach before he gave them to me (I said yes, but they gave me some problems…)

I’m nearly positive that’s what it was. Ibuprofen is for sissies anyway, so 1,200 mg of it wasn’t dangerous. My podiatrist told me that more than the recommended dose of the over the counter stuff was alright, but the prescription stuff of course is much stronger and I wouldn’t have taken so much.

A couple years ago I had tears in my hamstring before one of our state meets, and my coaches basically told me that we would lose the meet if I didn’t compete. I think that was my record for anti-inflamms, something nuts like 1,600 mg starting the night before and all morning while I sobbed on the bus… but I got away with 2 PR’s and met my PR’s in two other events :stuck_out_tongue: bottom line- the drugs work!

cycling the dosage sounds like a good idea. I think my doc’s point was that the body adapts and might eventually compensate so that you cannot feel normal without the pills.