Muscle Rupture After Minimal Trauma of the Spastic Muscle: Three Case Reports of Patients With Spinal Cord Injury.

Muscle rupture after minimal trauma of the spastic muscle: three case reports of patients with spinal cord injury.

Spinal Cord. 2013 Apr 16;
Carpentier TJ, Kiekens C, Peers KH

Study design:Retrospective study of three cases.Objectives:To report three cases of muscle rupture caused by minimal trauma in spinal cord injury (SCI) patients with severe spasticity and a literature review of the underlying mechanisms.Setting:Department of Physical and Rehabilitation Medicine, University Hospitals Leuven, BelgiumMethods:Retrospective study of three cases of muscle ruptures in SCI patients with severe spasticity. All muscle lesions were diagnosed by ultrasound. Literature review (Pubmed) was performed to identify extrinsic and intrinsic risk factors.Results:According to the literature and our clinical findings, several structural and mechanical alterations of the spastic muscle in combination with specific stretching during therapy or a transfer can cause a muscle rupture after minimal trauma.Conclusion:To the authors’ knowledge, this is the first report of muscle rupture due to spasticity in SCI patients. Altered mechanical properties of the spastic muscle in combination with extreme stretching may cause partial or complete ruptur. Although this is a rare complication of spasticity, medical staff and therapists should be aware of the risk factors in order to prevent and quickly identify muscle lesions.Spinal Cord advance online publication, 16 April 2013; doi:10.1038/sc.2013.28. HubMed – rehab