A sprain is the acute or chronic abnormal stretching, partial tearing, or complete tearing of the supporting ligaments which surround a joint. It can involve damage to a muscle or tendon attachment. A sprain is commonly, but incorrectly, used to describe any pain in the joint.
A sprained ankle is the most common joint disorder. Sprains of the knees are the second most common sprains. Fingers are also commonly affected by this condition. The severity of the sprain depends on how badly the ligament was torn.
Sprains may give rise to disabling pain in the back. This is often caused by lifting excessively heavy objects or lifting heavy objects improperly. Back sprains are also commonly caused by auto accidents.
Sprains take variable amounts of time to heal, usually several weeks. The following procedure is recommended for immediate treatment of sprain: apply an ice pack for four to six hours so that blood vessels constrict; then apply heat to reopen the blood vessels. To prevent swelling, keep the injured limb elevated; support and rest the limb. In some cases, analgesics and/or a cast will be needed.
The primary cause of a sprain is excessive demands on a joint as a result of twisting or stretching the joint beyond its normal range of movement, with subsequent physical stress of the ligaments. In serious strains, all nearby tissues are injured.
Sports injuries and "twisting an ankle."
Signs & Symptoms
Sharp, transient pain Rapid swelling Hearing a snapping sound Tender muscles
Chronic sprains (appears several hours after the injury)
Stiffness Generalized tenderness Soreness
Structure & Function: Joint Support
Adult Child/Adolescent Bioflavonoids 500 - 1,000 mg 200 - 500 mg Bromelain/ Papain 5 - 20 mg 5 - 10 mg Magnesium 400 - 600 mg 200 - 300 mg Manganese 10 - 20 mg 5 - 10 mg Vitamin C 1,000 - 3,000 mg 1,000 - 3,000 mg
Note: All amounts are in addition to those supplements having a Recommended Dietary Allowance (RDA). Due to individual needs, one must always be aware of a possible undetermined effect when taking nutritional supplements. If any disturbances from the use of a particular supplement should occur, stop its use immediately and seek the care of a qualified health care professional.
No nutritional management is prescribed specifically for sprains. However, since a sprain is described as an injury or rupture of tendons or ligaments, a Protein Enriched Diet would be helpful in the promotion of collagenous tissue repair and growth.
1. Arnica montana tinct. - 30C
2. Ruta graveolens tinct. - 30C
3. Rhus Toxicodendron - 30C
Doses cited are to be administered on a 3X daily schedule, unless otherwise indicated. Dose usually continued for 2 weeks. Liquid preparations usually use 8-10 drops per dose. Solid preps are usually 3 pellets per dose. Children use 1/2 dose.
X = 1 to 10 dilution - weak (triturition)
C = 1 to 100 dilution - weak (potency)
M = 1 to 1 million dilution (very strong)
X or C underlined means it is most useful potency
Asterisk (*) = Primary remedy. Means most necessary remedy. There may be more than one remedy - if so, use all of them.
Boericke, D.E., 1988. Homeopathic Materia Medica.
Coulter, C.R., 1986. Portraits of Homeopathic Medicines.
Kent, J.T., 1989. Repertory of the Homeopathic Materia Medica.
Koehler, G., 1989. Handbook of Homeopathy.
Shingale, J.N., 1992. Bedside Prescriber.
Smith, Trevor, 1989. Homeopathic Medicine.
Ullman, Dana, 1991. The One Minute (or so) Healer.
Horsetail or Shavegrass (Equisetum arvense)
Note: The misdirected use of an herb can produce severely adverse effects, especially in combination with prescription drugs. This Herbal information is for educational purposes and is not intended as a replacement for medical advice.
Arnica is popular as a compress, tincture or ointment in both homeopathy and herbal usage. Arnica flower is approved by the German Commission E.
Horsetail provides silica for rebuilding the joint tissues.
Papaya (papain) and Pineapple (Bromelain) provide valuable digestive enzymes which help to minimize coagulation and speed healing. They may be taken internally, or applied as a compress.
Note that Bromelain but not papain is approved by the German Commission E.
Comfrey root is approved by the German Commission E and uniquely recommended for strained ligaments.
Comfrey herb, leaf and root are approved by the German Commission E and uniquely recommended for sprains.
Blumenthal, M (Ed.): The Complete German Commission E Monographs: Therapeutic Guide to Herbal Medicines. American Botanical Council. Austin, TX. 1998.
Aromatherapy - Essential Oils
Chamomile Essence, Lavender Essence.
Related Health ConditionsAbstracts
Alpers, D.H., R.E. Clouse & W.F. Stenson. 1983. Manual of Nutritional Therapeutics. Little, Brown, and Company, Boston. 457 pp.
Anonymous: Doctor-Astronaut Warns of Bone Risk. Medical Tribune, August 8, 1991;1,8.
Arslanagic, J. & N. Brkic. Personal Experience in the Treatment of Acute Sports Injuries with Bioflavonoids. Medical Archives, 36. 1982.
Bland, Jeffrey. Nutraerobics. San Francisco: Harper & Row, 1983.
Bland, Jeffrey. Medical Applications of Clinical Nutrition. Keats, 1983.
Callaghan MJ: Role of ankle taping and bracing in the athlete. Br J Sports Med, 1997 Jun, 31:2, 102-8.
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Metzner, J. Influence of Flavonoids on Capillary Permeability, Carageenin Edema and Histamine Spasms. Agents Actions, 10. 1982.
Perrin PP et al., Ankle trauma significantly impairs posture control--a study in basketball players and controls. Int J Sports Med, 1997 Jul, 18:5, 387-92.
Petersdorf, R.G. & R.D. Adams. 1983. Harrison's Principles Of Internal Medicine. 10th ed. McGraw Hill Pub Co., New York. 2212pp.
Stedman, Thomas Lathrop. Stedman's Medical Dictionary. 24th ed. Baltimore: Williams and Wilkins, 1982.
Steward B et al., Fabricating a splint for deep friction massage. J Orthop Sports Phys Ther, 1995 Mar, 21:3, 172-5.
Subak-Sharpe, G.J. 1984. The Physician's Manual For Patients. Times Books Pub, New York. 607 pp.
Tarayre, J. & H. Lauressergues. The Use of Bioflavonoids, Proteolytic Enzymes, and Vitamin C In Inflammatory Disorders. Arzneim-forsch., 27 1977.
van Dijk CN et al., Physical examination is sufficient for the diagnosis of sprained ankles. J Bone Joint Surg Br, 78(6):958-62 1996 Nov.
Walgenbach AW: The ankle joint: the evaluation and treatment of sprains. Nurse Pract Forum, 7(3):120-4 1996 Sep.
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