What is a Calf Strain?

calf strain

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What is a Calf Strain?


A calf strain, also known as a pulled calf muscle, is a common injury that occurs when the muscles in the calf are stretched beyond their limits, resulting in tears in the muscle fibers. This injury can range from mild to severe, depending on the extent of muscle damage.

What causes calf pain?

Common causes of calf pain are a cramp or muscle strain in the calf.

A cramp is when the muscles suddenly tightens causing pain. This might happen if you have been doing new exercises, if you are dehydrated, or if you are deficient in some dietary minerals. Cramps normally go away by themselves.

Sometimes cramps can be a symptom of an underlying medical issue. If you have regular or severe cramping that lasts longer than a few minutes you should speak with your doctor.

A calf strain is the overstretching or tearing of either of the 2 calf muscles.

Other possible causes of calf pain include:

  • Achilles tendon injuries such as Achilles tendinopathy or a sudden rupture of your Achilles tendon
  • sciatica — when you have problems with the sciatic nerve which controls your lower leg
  • a bruise due to injury
  • diabetic peripheral neuropathy — when you have nerve damage that affects your feet, legs, arms and hand
  • deep vein thrombosis (DVT) — when a blood clot forms in the deep veins most commonly in the leg (this is a medical emergency, see your doctor immediately if you think you might have DVT)
  • compartment syndrome — a serious condition caused by trauma to the muscle

Calf strain is categorised into grades:

  • Mild — sharp pain (during or after activity).
  • Moderate — pain that means you can’t continue regular activity.
  • Severe — severe pain between your Achilles tendon and the middle of the muscle.

Sometimes calf pain can be a symptom of something more serious that needs urgent medical attention.

Are you suffering from any foot condition?  At The Chelsea Clinic, we can help.  One of our podiatrist can assist and then recommend what treatments are best to get you back on track. Podiatrist South Kensington
Schedule an appointment here or you may call us at +44 (0) 207 101 4000


We hope you have a feetastic day!

-The Chelsea Clinic and Team



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At The Chelsea clinic we have a very specific skill set with regards the foot and ankle. Pleased to offer a bespoke service which is tailored to the individual. With over 20 years experience in the Fitness and Healthcare industry we are registered and qualified with the Health Care Professions Council, the College of Podiatry and the General Osteopathic Council.