What is a Myofascial Pain?
Myofascial pain is pain in the muscles, ligaments, tendons, and other body soft tissue. It is usually caused by injury or trauma to these areas. Muscles and ligaments are covered with a thin layer of tissue called the fascia. Tightening or contracting of this tissue can result in “knotting” of the muscle. This can be referred to as a “trigger point”.
Common symptoms of myofascial pain are:
- pain in localized areas of muscles
- pain that gets worse when the affected muscle is put under stress
- presence of painful knots in muscles that produce intense localized or referred pain when pressure is applied
- muscles that are weak or stiff
Causes and Risks
Some causes of myofascial pain may include:
- Overuse of muscles
- Long-term immobilization such as in prolonged sitting or standing arm or leg (such as being in a cast)
- Depression and anxiety may increase myofascial pain symptoms.
Treatment and Prevention
Consistent exercising, maintaining good posture, and ergonomic evaluation of the work environment, are all preventive methods to avoid myofascial pain syndrome. Trigger point injections are also helpful in reducing tension in the muscles.