Pronounced: FOR-arm MUSS-el str-AY-n
A forearm muscle strain is a partial or complete tear of the small fibers of the forearm muscles. Forearm muscles allow you to extend and flex your wrist and fingers.
Muscles of the Hand and Forearm
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A forearm muscle strain is caused by:
Factors that may increase the chance of a forearm muscle strain include:
Symptoms may include:
The doctor will ask about symptoms and medical history. A physical exam will be done.
Most forearm muscle strains can be diagnosed with a physical exam.
Muscle strains are graded according to their severity:
Recovery time ranges depend on the grade of your injury. Treatment options may include one or more of the following:
The muscle will need time to heal. RICE is often the main part of treatment:
Prescription or over-the-counter medications may be advised to reduce pain.
To help reduce the chance of a forearm muscle strain:
American Council on Exercise
Family Doctor—American Academy of Family Physicians
Canadian Physiotherapy Association
Canadian Academy of Sports Medicine
Dawson, WJ. Intrinsic muscle strain in the instrumentalist. Med Prol Perform Artists. 2005;20:66-69.
Muscle strain (pulled muscle). John Hopkins Medicine website. Available at: http://www.hopkinsmedicine.org/orthopaedic-surgery/specialty-areas/sports-medicine/conditions-we-treat/muscle-strains.html. Accessed March 10, 2015.
Sprains, strains, and tears. American College of Sports Medicine website. Available at: http://www.acsm.org/docs/brochures/sprains-strains-and-tears.pdf. Accessed March 10, 2015.
10/26/2010 DynaMed Plus Systematic Literature Surveillance http://www.dynamed.com: Massey T, Derry S, Moore R, McQuay H. Topical NSAIDs for acute pain in adults. Cochrane Database Syst Rev. 2010;(6):CD007402.
Last reviewed March 2016 by James Cornell, MD
Please be aware that this information is provided to supplement the care provided by your physician. It is neither intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. CALL YOUR HEALTHCARE PROVIDER IMMEDIATELY IF YOU THINK YOU MAY HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider prior to starting any new treatment or with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition.
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