Compartment Syndrome - Treatment - Chronic Compartment Syndrome

Chronic Compartment Syndrome

Chronic compartment syndrome in the lower leg can be treated conservatively or surgically. Conservative treatment includes rest, anti-inflammatories, and manual decompression. Elevation of the affected limb in patients with compartment syndrome is contraindicated, as this leads to decreased vascular perfusion of the affected region. Ideally, the affected limb should be positioned at the level of the heart. The use of devices that apply external pressure to the area, such as splints, casts, and tight wound dressings, should be avoided. In cases where symptoms persist, the condition can be treated by a surgical procedure, subcutaneous fasciotomy or open fasciotomy. Left untreated, chronic compartment syndrome can develop into the acute syndrome. A possible complication of surgical intervention for chronic compartment syndrome can be chronic venous insufficiency.

Hyperbaric oxygen therapy has been suggested by case reports — though as of 2011 not proven in controlled randomized trials — to be an effective adjunctive therapy for crush injury, compartment syndrome, and other acute traumatic ischemias, by improving wound healing and reducing the need for repetitive surgery. The main treatment for compartment syndrome is surgery. There needs to be an incision in the skin so that the skin may be retracted back. Incisions are made in the affected muscle compartments so that they will decompress. This decompression will relieve the pressure on the venules and lymphatic vessels, and will increase bloodflow throughout the muscle.

Technology solutions for compartment syndrome involving continuous monitoring have also been proposed and tested.

Read more about this topic:  Compartment Syndrome, Treatment

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