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Abdominal Muscle Strain Treatment, Symptoms, and Causes

Jul 28, 2023

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Causes Of Abdominal Muscle Strain

Symptoms Of Abdominal Muscle Strain

Diagnosis Of Abdominal Muscle Strain

Treatment Of Abdominal Muscle Strain

Prevention Of Abdominal Muscle Strain

Abdominal Muscle Strain

The muscles of the abdomen (stomach) are a part of the musculoskeletal system. These muscles help with movement, support the trunk (midsection), and hold the organs in place. They are situated between the pelvis and the ribs in the front of the body.

The back muscles and abdominal muscles are the core muscles that stabilize and support the spine. They help you stand, walk, exercise, and do other things more easily.

There are various muscle groups that make up the abdominal muscles:

  • To help with left- and right-body (trunk) rotation, oblique muscles contract.
  • The rectus abdominus muscles are visible in "six-pack abs." They permit movement between the ribs and the pelvis.
  • Transversus abdominus is the name for the deepest abdominal muscles. These muscles help to provide stability to the trunk and also help to protect organs.

Read this blog further to get a quick overview of this important topic for MEDICINE  to ace your NEET PG exam preparation.

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Causes Of Abdominal Muscle Strain

An abdominal pull is typically a result of overuse. Repetitive action, which occurs frequently during sports or other physical activity, can strain or tear a muscle.

Strains can range from minor, unnoticeable tears in the muscle fibres to powerful pulls that could potentially cause the muscle to separate.

Additional elements consist of:

  • Frequent sneezing or coughing.
  • Severe or rigorous exercise.
  • Mishaps such as trips and slides or auto collisions.
  • Moving heavy objects.
  • Sudden turning.
  • Overstretching the muscles is bad.
  • Abs are overused.
  • The trunk was twisted fast and forcefully.
  • Trunk discomfort is a result of exercise, coughing, laughing, or sneezing.
  • Bloating or bruising.
  • Difficulty breathing in severe situations.
  • Painful gas.
  • Indigestion
  • Diastasis recti are distinguished by an abnormal widening of the space between the two medial sides of the rectus abdominal muscle in post-menopausal women or during pregnancy.

Also Read: Coma: Causes, Symptoms, Diagnosis, Treatment and Complications

Symptoms Of Abdominal Muscle Strain

If you have an abdominal strain, the skin on your stomach may hurt and itching can be present. These sensations are more likely to occur when your abdominal muscles are active and contracted.

Other indications include:

  • Sudden, intense pain
  • Swollen, bruised, and feeble
  • Stiffness
  • Cramps or spasms in the muscles that hurt or make it difficult to stretch or flex the muscle
  • Difficult to walk, stand up straight, or bend forward or sideways. It could be difficult to perform tasks using your core muscles, such as reaching over your head.

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Diagnosis Of Abdominal Muscle Strain

The cause of abdominal muscular strain is identified using a physical examination, a history of symptoms, and any appropriate testing.

The doctor will probably talk to you about the nature of the pain and whether you have any underlying medical conditions or mental health issues that could be the source of the abdominal discomfort.

The elements of the strained abdominal muscles listed below may provide information on the following issues:

  • Where are you?
  • What kind of pain it is light, stabbing, searing, cramping and how strong it is
  • Since when have you got it?
  • Whether certain behaviours cause things to get better or worse
  • Your medical background, any recent injuries, and any potential pregnancies may also be brought up by the doctor.

Any of the subsequent tests may be carried out to help determine the source of the abdominal muscle tension if the doctor finds a serious medical issue that may need treatment.

  • Abdomen-specific X-rays, abdominal ultrasounds, and abdominal computed tomography (CT) scans are all examples of abdominal imaging.
  • The colonoscopy enema- The digestive tract can be viewed with endoscopic treatments, which entail putting a tube with a tiny camera into your mouth or rectum.
  • Electrocardiogram- Evaluation of the history, current symptoms, and previous behaviour on subjective basis variables that cause trauma: the trauma's direction and intensity
  • Observation- An evident abnormality, like a bulge or defect in the abdominal muscles, could indicate an abdominal strain injury like palpation, tenderness and swelling.

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Treatment Of Abdominal Muscle Strain

Most cases of abdominal pain can be treated at home. For the most part, mild strains will heal in a few weeks. The remedies listed below can help to ensure a speedy recovery.

  1. Initial cold therapy

To lessen swelling, pain, and bleeding, use cold therapy as soon as you can. Cold therapy has the potential to lessen inflammation.

What to do:

  • Get an ice pack, gel pack, or bag of frozen vegetables to apply to the wounded region.
  • Cover the cold pack with a towel or other piece of fabric. This will protect your skin and reduce the likelihood of subsequent irritation.
  • For 10 to 15 minutes at a time, carefully apply the cold pack to your wounds.
  • If you can, attempt to repeat this treatment every hour for the first few days after your accident.

2. Heat therapy

Heat therapy can relax your muscles and alleviate tension, which lessens discomfort. This might promote healing and reduce inflammation.

How to execute:

  • Buy a heating pad or patch.
  • In the absence of a ready-made compress, you can fill a clean sock with rice and secure it with a tie. Microwave the sock for one to two minutes. 
  • Apply the warm compress to the wounded region for up to 20 minutes at a time.
  • If you can, attempt to repeat this treatment every hour for the first few days after your accident.

3. Over-the-counter analgesics

You can also take over-the-counter medications to lessen the severity of the pain.

Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), such as ibuprofen (Advil) and naproxen sodium (Aleve), may also lessen inflammation and edoema.

Aspirin (Bayer) and acetaminophen (Tylenol) are two more medicines that can be used, but they won't lessen inflammation.


You might want to consider using an abdominal bandage or binder to assist compress your abs. Movement and edoema can be lessened by the applied pressure.

Discuss with your doctor how long and firmly you should wear the binder in order to get rid of your symptoms. Choose a binder made of an allergen-free substance to avoid complications.

5. Rest

Aim to obtain as much sleep as you can, and avoid demanding or stressful activities. This is essential if you have a sports injury.

Use this opportunity to relax by finding a comfy seat or place to lie down. Rest till the ache is completely gone. 

6. Exercise

Once your symptoms have subsided, you can begin engaging in exercises to strengthen your abdomen and core. The pelvic tilt and curl-up are two popular procedures.

If your body will let it, try to do these exercises a couple of times a week. Give yourself a break in between workouts, don't forget.

To crouch:

  • Kneel on your back and flex them.
  • Put your hands by your sides.
  • Lift your head and shoulders a few inches. Lift your arms up till your thighs are in reach.
  • Hold for 6 seconds.
  • Retract a little.
  • Run three sets of eight repetitions.

By tilting the pelvis

  • Kneel on your back and flex them.
  • As you pull in and move your belly button closer to your spine, tighten your abdominal muscles.
  • Press your lower back towards the floor while angling your hips and pelvis back slightly.
  • Hold for 6 seconds.
  • Keep your composure and return to your starting position.
  • Run three sets of eight repetitions.

Also Read: Spontaneous Coronary Artery Dissection: Causes, Symptoms, Risk Factors, Diagnosis, Treatment and Complications

Prevention Of Abdominal Muscle Strain

You must act immediately to prevent further abdominal discomfort. Regular abdominal strain might have detrimental repercussions.

When exercising, you should:

  • Any physical activity should be preceded by stretching and warming up.
  • Relax yourself after your workout.
  • Give your muscles a weeklong respite by taking a break.
  • Start out slowly and gradually increase the length and intensity of each new fitness regimen you embark on.

In general, you should:

  • Bend your knees and hips while lowering yourself with a straight back to lift heavy goods.
  • Keep a good posture whether you're standing or sitting down. Watch your posture throughout the day and make any required adjustments.
  • Be careful to stand up, pause, and walk in case you have to sit for an extended period of time.

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