Iliotibial band syndrome is a common injury among those who do repetitive motion sports like runners, cyclers, hikers, and distance walkers. It happens when the iliotibial band, a tendon that connects the hip to the tibia, gets compressed into the thigh muscles and creates friction in the knee area. Factors contributing to this condition are running on uneven ground, not properly warming up before workouts, improper stretches, worn out shoes, and when one limb is shorter than the other. Proper form while running or cycling is essential to avoid the pain of iliotibial band syndrome. The pain can be a mild annoyance, or it can be severe and make it hard to walk. Often treatment includes a hiatus from the activity causing it.
RICE Treatment stands for Rest, Ice, Compression, and Elevation. Rest from whatever activity or sport is causing the condition. Taking time off is important to allow the body to heal without re-injuring it. Icing the outside of the knee will relieve swelling and inflammation of damaged tissue. Compression involves wrapping the knee with sports tape or braces when one must use it. This will also help to reduce swelling and improve stability. Elevation reduces the blood flow to the injury keeping swelling, inflammation, and pain at bay. This type of treatment is most effective when all aspects of it are followed by each other.
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