Subtle Injury Symptoms You Shouldn't Ignore

Dec 12 / Build Muscle

The Diamondbacks’ Jason Marquis made the nation cringe when he threw 13 pitches on a broken leg on Sunday. That’s right, he played through a broken leg. The first injury—when a ball hit Marquis’ shin earlier in the game, and Marquis kept on playing—could have just been a red herring, says David McAllister, M.D., UCLA department of Orthopedic Surgery Chief of Sports Medicine. “There’s no way to know for sure if his leg simply sustained a bruise and the two injuries were unrelated, or if he did suffer from a non-displaced fracture early on, which later gave way. That’s the more likely scenari...

The Diamondbacks’ Jason Marquis made the nation cringe when he threw 13 pitches on a broken leg on Sunday. That’s right, he played through a broken leg.

The first injury—when a ball hit Marquis’ shin earlier in the game, and Marquis kept on playing—could have just been a red herring, says David McAllister, M.D., UCLA department of Orthopedic Surgery Chief of Sports Medicine. “There’s no way to know for sure if his leg simply sustained a bruise and the two injuries were unrelated, or if he did suffer from a non-displaced fracture early on, which later gave way. That’s the more likely scenario.”

Marquis felt pain when he was first hit in the shin an inning earlier, but it seemingly dissolved after a few plays—likely due to the pitcher’s adrenaline and focus on the game, musclemorphosis.com.

How do you know whether your tinge or bruise is nothing to worry about or the sign of something major? Here’s how to read your body’s signals.

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Pain
“Pain is the best indicator that something is wrong. If it doesn’t go away after several minutes, gets worse, affects your exercise or routine, or is so strong that you can’t bear weight, the injury is likely more serious and you should see a doctor for examination,” Dr. McAllister says. “Pain is always your first and best guide and a signal to stop.”

Swelling
“Torn ligaments are common sports injuries, whether in ankles, shoulders or knees,” Dr. McAllister says. “Swelling is an indication of injury, and not always relative to the pain experienced.”

Ligament tear pain can depend on the individual, and whether or not the tear is complete (when it’s complete, you usually feel less pain)—so if there’s swelling, head to a doctor.

Pops and cracking sounds
“If you squat while weight-lifting for example, and your knee pops, it’s likely nothing to worry about,” Dr. McAllister says. “Joints can sometimes make popping noises, and the snaps can sometimes be tendons sliding over bone.”

If the pop is not accompanied by pain or swelling, don’t worry about it. If the pop is quickly followed by noticeable swelling, it could be a ligament tear, so see a doc.

Numbness
“If a disc is ruptured or bulged, the person might feel numbness and/or tingling down arms and legs, depending on whether the disc is located in the neck (arms) or lower back (legs)," says Dr. McAllister. "If this happens, visit a spine specialist for evaluation, as symptoms can worsen if untreated.”

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