Muscle strains (tears) are common, particularly in the lower limb. Although they will often settle with rest and activity modification they can heal poorly and are prone to reccurance. When to ice, when to massage, when to use crutches and braces and bandages, when to resume activity and how quickly to resume activity should be supervised by a qualified physiotherpist for the patient's best chance of recovery. As with ligament injuries, musclular pain often settles several weeks before full healing has occurred and a too early return to activity can cause a recurrence.
Treatment of muscle strains (tears) consists of rest initially, with ice compression and bracing where possible and often use of crutches. Following this inital treatment, a graded exercise program aimed at restoring optimal strength and flexibility to the muscle is put in place and other activities are prescribed (particularly for sports people) so that general fitness and flexibility are maintained whilst the person recovers.