13/03/2021 / Health and Fitness

6 Types of Soft Tissue Injuries and their Treatment

Damage to the skin, ligament, or tendon leads to soft tissue injury. This medical condition is a common occurrence in people who participate in sports, engage in excessive physical activity, or have hefty exercise routines.

6 Types of Soft Tissue Injuries and their Treatment
Mazia AhmedMazia Ahmed

Mazia Ahmed

MSc Nutrition Science, Ph.D. Scholar

Table of Content


Damage to the skin, ligament, or tendon leads to soft tissue injury. This medical condition is a common occurrence in people who participate in sports, engage in excessive physical activity, or have hefty exercise routines. For instance, it’s very common with marathon runners who tend to put a weighty measure of stress on their legs and feet. The outcome can be regular injury or strain to key regions of the lower leg like the calf muscles or an Achilles ligament. Soft tissue injury results in pain, swelling, bruising, and damage. 

4 Common Symptoms of a Soft Tissue Injury

Apart from pain that stems from the injured part of the body, other symptoms can help in diagnosing the severity of this type of injury. It requires immediate treatment and if ignored it could lead to complications. Below are few symptoms of Soft tissue Injuries. Sports injuries can be avoided by taking some precautions.

1. A lump on or around the site of the injury,

2. Inability to put weight on the area, instability of the affected joint,

3. Muscle cramping or weakness

4. Swelling or bruising

6 Types of Soft Tissue Injury

1. Anterior Cruciate Ligament injuries (ACL) 

Anterior Cruciate Ligament injuries affect the ligament found near the knee. This ligament is primary in aiding mobility of the joint. Sudden changes in the direction of movement, abruptly stopping any activity involving knees, or a direct hit to the knee area can lead to an ACL injury. Despite age, women are more prone to an ACL injury. Minor injuries can be treated immediately with physical therapy or medications although further discomfort should be addressed and requires surgical treatment.

2. Bursitis

Bursitis affects the fluid-filled sacs called bursae found around the joints. The lubrication provided by bursae helps in reducing friction during joint movements. Inflammation of these sacs leads to bursitis. Inflammation can arise due to repetitive motion and overuse. Bursae of the hips, elbows, and shoulders are more prone to this injury and physical therapy will help in full recovery and prevent future injury as well.

3. Sprains

Sprains are a very common soft tissue injury. It occurs when there is a partial tear to any ligament found around the ankles, knees, or wrists region. Physical therapy and medication help this condition even though it should be treated with the utmost care and precision since this ligament tissue intersects between two bones.

6 Types of Soft Tissue Injuries and their Treatment 1

4. Tendonitis

Tendons are found around shoulders, wrists, knees, and elbows. The inflammation of these fibrous cords leads to tendonitis. Repetitive motions and overuse regularly lead to tendonitis. Physical therapy along with necessary anti-inflammatory medicines will help in recovery.

5. Contusions

Any significant injury to a ligament, tendon, or bone can be considered a contusion. It leaves a bruise or a lump in the injured area with discolored skin. Simple physical therapy techniques and the use of ice packs will help in healing.

6. Concussions

A concussion is a condition that occurs when soft tissues in the brain are injured. Even if considered as a temporary injury it affects one’s concentration, memory, balance, and coordination. It damages brain function overall. Depending on the severity of the condition, painkillers will be prescribed, and if the body is unresponsive to the medication surgical treatments might be required.

2 Medical Treatments of a Soft Tissue Injury

Immediate treatments help reduce the severity of the injury when followed for a maximum of 72 hours.

  • The R.I.C.E.R method stands for rest, ice, compression, elevation, and referral and helps with any bleeding and immediate damage.

  • No HARM treatment is another effective method. It requires the person to say no to heat, alcohol, running, and massage to treat the injuries. These immediate treatments will be only effective when coupled with proper medication for a full recovery . 

6 Types of Soft Tissue Injuries and their Treatment 2

1. R.I.C.E.R Method

The RICER technique is a viable strategy utilized in the underlying treatment of a soft tissue injury. 

Rest: A reprieve from physical activity is prescribed to give the injury time to mend. 

Ice: The injury ought to be frosted here and there in 20-minute spans, keeping away from direct contact of ice to the skin. 

Compression: Bandaging the injury will pack it, and forestall any further draining or growing to happen. 

Elevation: Elevating the injury over your heart while you are resting will help in the decrease of swelling. 

Referral: Referral to a proper clinical expert for direction and the board.

2. No HARM Treatment 

It ought to be utilized within the initial 48–72 hours (contingent upon seriousness) after the injury to accelerate the recuperation cycle. 

(No) Heat: Applying warmth to the harmed zone can cause bleeding and swelling.

(No) Alcohol: Alcohol can hinder your capacity to feel if your physical issue is getting more exasperated, increase in bleeding, and swelling. 

(No) Re-injury: Avoid any exercises that could irritate the injury and bring on additional harm. 

(No) Massage: Massaging a harmed region can avoid more bleeding and swelling, and eventually accomplish more harm whenever done too soon.

Word of Wisdom

For a more extreme soft tissue injury, a brief assessment by an orthopaedist or sports injury therapist is suggested. Because severe soft tissue wounds may require surgeries for recovery, a considerable no. of these medical procedures can be performed arthroscopically; intrusive methodology or small incisions are made to repair the damage. On many occasions, these methods are genuinely speedy and doesn’t need a short-term emergency clinic stay.

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