I don’t want to get into (again) listing the numerous sports-related injuries that I have had over the years. However, I will go on record right now and say that a groin injury is one of the most painful – and lingering – ailments of all sports-related injuries.
The groin is the area of the body where your abdomen joins your thighs. Mild pain in this area could become a serious problem if not taken care of immediately and long-term groin pain should be medically evaluated.
Groin pain can be caused by a variety of reasons.
A groin strain is a stretch, tear, or complete rupture of the muscle called the adductor longus, which runs from the pubic bone to the inside of the thigh bone. Symptoms include stabbing pain, bruising, swelling, and the inability to draw your leg inward. Groin strains can reoccur often if they are never allowed to fully heal. Minor strains can be treated with rest, ice, compression, and elevation, a regimen known as RICE. More serious strains call for both RICE and medical care and recovery time ranges from two to eight weeks, depending on the severity of the injury.
A hernia is any part of an organ that bulges out through a weak spot or tear in the muscle of the abdominal wall. Hernias are often caused by such actions as coughing, heavy lifting, or straining during a bowel movement. Sometimes there is no apparent cause. The degree of pain may vary, but surgery is always needed to repair a hernia. Without treatment, the tear can enlarge. Oxygen and blood can be cut off from the pinched section of the protruding organ, and this could be life-threatening.
In growing children, a muscle tendon does not tear during a violent muscle contraction. Instead, it pulls off part of the pre-bone attachment to the pelvic bone. Such an injury most likely occurs when the child is jumping or sprinting, as in soccer or football. The severe pain and disability require immediate medical care.
The cartilage disc in your pubic bone can also become inflamed. This happens when you overuse the muscles on the inner side of your thigh, the ones that attach to the pubic bone and the cartilage disc. Non-surgical treatment, including rest, can control the pain and inflammation. Direct trauma to the genital area usually causes immediate pain. If there is also any swelling or bleeding in the area, be sure to go and get a medical evaluation. Once again, any groin-area injury should be treated seriously and swiftly. I know from firsthand experience – and it is certainly no laughing matter.