The rectus femoris is a strong quadriceps muscle. If it is ruptured specifically at the upper part close to the hip, it is usually due to overuse or excessive strain. As a biaxial muscle, it crosses 2 joints – both the knee and hip joint. It is responsible for straightening or lifting the knee. Due to its function, significant force travels through it, especially when jumping or kicking.
What are the indications?
- Abrupt piercing pain at the front region of the hip or the groin during explosive activity
- Swelling and bruising can occur along with discomfort if the knee is lifted against resistance
- Evident tenderness if the site of muscle attachment at the front part of the hip is pressed
- It is impossible to contract the muscle if full rupture has occurred.
Management of rectus femoris tendon rupture
Adequate rest and application of ice along with compression are part of the initial care for rectus femoris tendon rupture. An ice pack can be applied for 10-15 minutes every hour during the initial 24 hours. The frequency of the applications can be reduced to 2 or 3 times in a day as the symptoms start to settle.
In some cases, ultrasound and laser treatment can be used to alleviate the pain, inflammation and promote healing. After the acute phase, sports massage is beneficial. In case the rectus femoris tendon is completely torn, it is fixed surgically.
A rehabilitation program that includes strengthening and stretching exercises must be done before the individual can return to full fitness.
If there is partial rupture of the muscle, it can result to inflammation after the initial damage has healed. Groin injuries can be avoided by ensuring that the muscles are strong and flexible with the help of stretching and strengthening exercises.
More Information / Disclaimer
The information posted on this page on rectus femoris tendon rupture is for learning purposes only. Learn to recognize and manage tendon injuries by taking a standard first aid course with Vancouver First Aid.