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MEDICINA DELLO SPORT

A Journal on Sports Medicine


Official Journal of the Italian Sports Medicine Federation
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Medicina dello Sport 2012 June;65(2):259-64

language: English, Italian

Cryotherapy associated common peroneal nerve lesion in a soccer player

Eirale C. 1, Sannicandro I. 2, Sala M. 1, Benzarti N. 1, Chalabi H. 1

1 Orthopedic and Sports Medicine Hospital, Doha, Qatar;
2 Sciences and Techniques of Motor Activity, University of Foggia, Foggia, Italy


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After a blow to his left lateral knee during football and 45 minutes of direct ice application afterwards, a 19-year-old African male football player reported inability to walk normally and a drop foot the following day. Examination revealed normal motion and stability of the knee joint with slight tenderness at the fibular head. There was loss of muscle strength against gravity for dorsal flexion and eversion of the left foot with associated numbness over the lateral lower leg. Clinical, radiological and electrophysiological examinations leaded to a diagnosis of axonotmesis of the common peroneal nerve. Therapy consisted of physiotherapy and the use of a peroneal splint and he played his first match after 30 weeks. In conclusion, nerve common peroneal nerve lesion in sport may lead to a prolonged absence from competition. Several etiological factors may be involved, including prolonged ice application, which should be carefully monitored by the medical staff. Athletes should be educated on the modalities of application of ice and on the potential complications of its misuse.

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