“Tennis leg”: ultrasound differential diagnosis and follow-up.

Gaulrapp H. Sportverletz Sportschaden 1999 Jun;13(2):53-8.

Tennis leg is a common muscle injury in men older than 40 years participating in racquet sports, alpine skiing and running. It is defined as a partial or total rupture of the medial head of the gastrocnemius muscle which usually is well demonstrable by ultrasound. Main symptom is a sudden sharp pain leading to an obligate immediate stop of sport activity. Clinically pain on local pressure or stretching of the muscle will be reported, local defects can be palpated. 25 patients were prospectively examined by ultrasound according to a new developed grading system. A grade-adapted conservative therapy program led to a wide relief of pain after about two weeks. Full range of sport ability was only regained after at least three weeks. Ultrasonography is able to clearly demonstrate the size and grade of the lesion, thus enabling a well defined therapy program and prognostic conclusions.