Strained oblique muscle: What are the signs?

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The oblique muscle is a core muscle that has a vital role in various activities such as standing, sitting and walking. A strain to this muscle occurs if it is overly stretched or partly torn can trigger pain and can be debilitating.

What are the indications?

A strained oblique muscle is characterized primarily with sharp, abrupt pain in or around the rib cage. Generally, the area is tender to the touch and bruising might arise depending on the seriousness of the injury.

A strained oblique muscle is characterized primarily with sharp, abrupt pain in or around the rib cage.

Bending and twisting movements can elicit pain. The oblique muscle is more active while sitting up than lying down. Due to this, even standing or sitting can cause pain after a strain. Sneezing, deep breathing or coughing can also trigger pain.

What are the causes?

The oblique muscle is active during side bending, forward bending and twisting. A strain is likely to occur after performing these movements. These injuries are typically linked with sports such as golf, tennis or baseball.

High-intensity exercises that target the abdominal muscles such as crunches or sit-ups might also be the culprits. Nevertheless, even chronic sneezing or coughing can result to a strained oblique muscle.

Management of a strained oblique muscle

A strained oblique muscle might take 10 weeks to settle. The treatment generally includes the application of ice on the affected area, avoiding any aggravating activities and using anti-inflammatory medications if suggested by the doctor.

Once the pain settles, the individual should be steadily reintroduced to stretching and core-strengthening exercises if the individual could tolerate the activities without any pain.

Quick Note / Disclaimer

The material posted on this page on strained oblique muscle is for learning and educational purposes only. To learn to recognize the indications, register for a first aid and CPR course with Victoria First Aid.

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