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Sudden Calf Pain...Severe

Hey guys, I have a weird problem I could use help diagnosing. Yesterday afternoon I started getting a slight pain in my lower leg. At first it felt like a shine splint but soon hurt much more. When I would put weight on that foot my whole lower leg would SCREAM with pain. I went home and tried my foamroller to see if I could find any tight spots and I found a spot at the very top of my calf, right behind my knee that hurts TERRIBLE!!! I tried to roll it out, but I dont know if its a soft tissue problem. I did deadlifts for legs yesterday morning, but I have never run into this doing deads before. This weekend I only did one thing odd. I was chasing my nephew around the yard alot sunday wearing flip flops with no cushion. I am completely flat footed. Could this have injured something. The pain seems to come and go too. One minute I can walk almost completely normal and the next I have a severe limp. Foam rolling it almost made it worse. Let me know if any of you have any ideas. Thanks.

Get it checked out by a doctor. I hate internet diagnoses but you could have a blood clot.

Hey Boss,
Only thing I can think of is that when you were running around in the flip-flops, you had to change your running mechanics a bit to keep them on. Less ankle movement & probably more knee and hip involvement. Coulda strained either a gastroc or hammie, as both cross the back of the knee in the area you’re talking about.

You may wanna pop over to JPs to see if Bill, Julie, or someone else has any other ideas.

I don’t know how to help you treat it but it sounds like you strained it. It’s happened to me before. I’m not flat footed but one day I was just walking around and suddenly this sharp pain in my calf. Only thing I can recommend is not to use weights that require calf work. Do you regularly stretch? I’ve noticed that stretching has helped a lot. Adequate stretching is a must but if you don’t like stretching do 10 counts before and after you work out. This is assuming you don’t stretch at all.

Hey Steve-O, yeah I definitely had to change the way I ran to keep my flipflops on. Also, like I said, no support or cushion in those things.

Zap, wouldnt I have some numbness or tingling if it was a blood clot? I have the exact opposite of numbness. The pain kind of feels like it is right where a muscle attaches to the bone.

I guess i’ll just have to watch my ham and calf activity for the next couple of days to see if it goes away. Would you guys recommend that I keep using the foam roller? If its a strain, that would actually maybe hurt it more wouldnt it?

I’d ice it a few times a day, 10-15 minutes at a time. Probably wouldn’t roll it… just ice and rest. After it heals up a bit, then return to rolling, either with the roller, or maybe even a tennis ball.

[quote]Zap Branigan wrote:
Get it checked out by a doctor. I hate internet diagnoses but you could have a blood clot.[/quote]

I totally concur. Dorsiflex your foot (point your toes towards your body) If you feel pain in your calve that would be considered a positive Homan’s Sign. Possible DVT. Get it checked out immediately.

A little update. Actually, after I foam rolled it over lunch, it hurt like heck for about an hour, and now it actually feels REALLY good. It doesnt hurt hardly at all.

It feels a little tight back there, but no extreme pain. To the last poster who said to point my toes toward my body, no that causes no pain. The only time it caused pain before was when I tried to kinda stand on my toes, or when I was walking right as that foot left the ground.

Like I said though, actually feeling pretty good right now. Could it have just been a knot in there???

I called my sister who is an ER nurse and she said that if it was DVT, that the pain would be quite severe, but mostly when my foot is pulled backward in dorsiflexion.

When I do that, there is no pain at all. Its just general standing and walking that cause the pain. I can feel that there is a tendon or something back there that when pressed on causes the pain again.

She said that the most likely cause is extreme overpronation from wearing the sandles with no cushion or support and that caused me to over stimulate something.

Ok, another update. Tonight it doesnt hurt at all when I walk or anything but when I push right in the middle of the outside of my lower leg, Pretty much right on the bone about 2 inches down from my knee, it hurts like a bad bruise. As far as I know, I didnt hit it on anything. This really has me baffled. Its feels like a really bad bruise, right on that bone.

[quote]boss99er wrote:

Zap, wouldnt I have some numbness or tingling if it was a blood clot? I have the exact opposite of numbness. The pain kind of feels like it is right where a muscle attaches to the bone.

… [/quote]

I am not sure of all the exact symptoms but my sister had one in her calf they caught in time. She was ~ 29 or 30 years old at the time.

A guy on my rugby team had a stroke thay may have been caused by a clot in the calf. He was ~ 37 years old at the time.

I am a bit paranoid now.

Yeah, I hear ya on the paranoid stuff. but this really does seem to be a localized pain. If I push directly on the side of my leg, right on the bone, it hurts. When I pull my foot back, there is no pain at all. I am convinced that it is a strain of a tendon or a deep bruise of some sort.

If there is any heat, redness or swelling in the area, definitely get it checked out by a doctor.

The area you point out with tenderness most likely corresponds to the peroneals. You probably pulled one of them when running around with flip flops on. Does it hurt when you push your foot outward (everting your foot) or inward (inverting your foot) at the ankle?

Nope, no direction I move my foot in makes it hurt. I can move my foot all over. Its just sometimes while walking it hurts, usually when when I am pushing off my toes to take another step. The only other time it hurts is if I push right on that spot.

The spot is an inch or two below my knee right where the calf muscle meets the fibula (I think thats right, the outside bone)pretty much dead center front to back.

Oh and I forgot, there is no swelling, heat, or redness at all in the area.

It can be a chin splint. When you are flat-footed and you jump or run on hard/unstable surfaces, you have more chance to get a chin splint.

The sudden pain you had could just be caused by a big inflammation caused by your chin splint.

Try to get something in your shoes like an orthesis, put ice where it hurts and take a week off training. Try to avoid anything that could hurt you again. It will get better.

Oh yeah… I forgot.

I had exactly the same thing with my ankle during a tournament. I could walk and suddently not being able to stand at all on my feet. The pain could start anytime, even when im sitting on the floor. I suspect something jammed an caused inflammation. Two days later, I was ok. Just take some days off :stuck_out_tongue: