A groin pull, also known as groin strain, is an injury caused by putting too much stress on muscles in the groin and upper thigh. The pain associated with the injury results from a sudden and forceful stretching of the affected muscles. The most serious effect of this particular overstretching is tearing of the affected muscle. Groin pulls are considered a common injury in athletes, particularly those engaged in running and jumping as well as with sudden twisting, turning and kicking; while participating in sports, such as, rugby, soccer, football, basketball, ice hockey, etc
What are Symptoms of Groin Pull?
This particular injury causes sudden pain in the injured area, there's also tenderness and stiffness of the muscles in the groin area. The pain can be rather severe and excruciating. Apart from the pain an injured person may notice a swelling of the groin area. After a few days the affected part may show the signs of bruising.
All the movements in the groin area are restricted and any stretching of the inner thigh and hamstring becomes almost impossible. The injured muscles lose their strength.
How is Groin Pull Diagnosed?
A patient's medical history, a physical exam and the circumstances of the injury are all taken into consideration when diagnosing groin pull.
In a grade 1 pull, a patient generally complains about mild discomfort in the groin area. The physical activity remains almost intact. The injury leads only to stretching and minor tearing of muscle fibers and the full recovery is achieved after a couple of weeks.
A grade 2 groin pull, leads to moderate discomfort along with an inability to perform certain physical activities. The injured area is swollen and one complains of discomfort or pain. In this case the injury leads to partial tearing of muscle fibers and recovery time lasts longer even up to 2 months.
And finally, in a grade 3 pull, a person feels pain (particularly when walking) and the injured area is swollen and severely bruised. The muscle fibers are completely torn and the person recovers after 3 months.
Treatment for Groin Pull
The doctor opts for the most convenient treatment according to the severity of the injury. Bed rest is a must and a person is forbidden to engage in any kind of activities which may aggravate the pain and potentially lead to even more damage. The injured area can be treated with cold compresses for the first few days after the injury. The pain may subside only with bed rest and application of cold compresses. If not, a person is prescribed some pain relieving medications (ibuprofen etc). The swelling can be controlled with an elastic compression bandage. Once the pain subsides the patients are advised to start with mild stretching exercises prescribed by a physical therapist.