Shin splint is an acute pain on the shin or lower leg of a person. This condition is commonly triggered by prolonged running, typically on hard plains and irregularly shaped surfaces. It is also known to the medical community as Medial Tibial Stress Syndrome (MTSS).
Aside from MTSS, pain on the shin may also be caused by the following:
- Compartment syndrome – or chronic pain due to the build-up of pressure along the leg muscles
- Stress fracture of the leg bone
- Inflammation of the bone’s outer layer (perostitis)
- Inflammation of the muscle (myostitis)
- Inflammation of the tendon (tendonitis).
Typically, pain on the shin afflicts those who do sports that involve extensive running such as football, tennis, basketball, rugby, marathon, and the likes. Dancers are also susceptible to shin splints. Sometimes, strenuous running during the daily rush hours can cause a person to experience this leg condition. If you have flat feet, overpronated feet, overused leg muscles, poor hip and spine support, then your risk of incurring shin splints is higher.
A shin splint begins as a dull pain (often tolerable depending on the person), but will advance into a more excruciating and continuing pain. Normally, shin splints will heal on their own without intervention. However, you may want to see your doctor if such pain on the shin is being caused by a fracture or another condition that requires medical attention.