Compartment Syndrome


Compartment syndrome is a medical condition that causes increased pressure within a muscle compartment. This buildup of pressure can lead to decreased blood flow and even permanent muscle damage. There are two main types of compartment syndrome, there is acute and chronic. Fortunately, there are various treatment options available to help treat both of these types of compartment syndromes. If you are seeking physical therapy in Glen Cove, our physical therapists at Island Sports Physical Therapy will be able to provide you with the care you need in order to combat this condition.


This condition is caused when the groups of muscles are organized together in compartments or webs of connective tissue called fascia. If an injury is sustained, blood or fluid may build up in the compartment and make it difficult for the walls to expand, causing an increased amount of pressure.

  • Acute compartment syndrome– usually caused by a major injury like a car accident, broken or fractured bone, steroid use, constricting bandages, or a severely bruised muscle.
  • Chronic compartment syndrome– normally caused by exercise. People who are consistently involved in physical activity like running, bike riding or swimming have a higher risk of developing this condition. This form is not usually dangerous and can be solved by limiting the amount of physical activity.

Acute Symptoms

  • Pain when stretching the muscle
  • Tightness or numbness in the muscle
  • Burning or tingling sensation in the skin

Chronic symptoms:

  • Pain or cramping during exercise
  • Numbness in the muscle
  • Trouble moving the muscle


  1. Acute: Urgent attention is required for this form of compartment syndrome. Surgery may be the best treatment option. Non-surgical methods will not be able to treat it, due to the serious nature of the injury.
  2. Chronic: physical therapy is a great treatment option for chronic compartment syndrome. Physical therapy can be used to stretch the muscle and ease the pain. Our physical therapists will be able to recommend the best exercises that you can do to keep the muscle active and loose. One common exercise is low impact training, this way you can keep your muscles active while not putting too much added stress or tension on them. Along with exercise, stretches are a great option. You can perform these stretches anytime if you feel tightness or pain in the muscle. If you are seeking physical therapy in Glen Cove, Island Sports Physical Therapy offers orthopedic rehabilitation in order to help treat this condition. Our physical therapists will be able to provide different treatments such as; functional mobility, balance training, and soft tissue immobilization in order to help relieve your chronic compartment syndrome symptoms.

At Island Sports Physical Therapy in Glen Cove, we are committed to helping treat our patients who may be living with a wide range of conditions including compartment syndrome. If you believe physical therapy could be the right treatment option for you, please contact us today!

Island Sports Physical Therapy