Rupture vs Tear

Have you ever gotten injured while playing sports? How about while lifting heavy objects? Have you ever fallen? For most people, at some point in their lives, one of the above scenarios will ring a bell.

When that happens, all we know is that we are in pain. But what does it mean? Is it a rupture? Is it a tear?

To better understand both types of injuries, let’s take a look at some biology lessons.

The Difference Between Rupture and Tear

A rupture and a tear are the same thing: Injured tissue that has a cut. The injury could be partial or total (for example, a total rupture of the Achilles heel means that tendon has been severed).

Muscles and Tendons

When you hear about injuries caused by a rupture or tear, the injury is to either muscles or tendons (or both).

Muscles are the soft tissue that contract and expand, allowing us to move, maintain our posture, and provide stability to the joints. The human body has over 600 muscles, which make up for 40% of our body weight.

Tendons are tissue made out of collagen fibers that connect muscles to bones. This means every muscle has tendons at the end, making it entirely possible to injure both at the same time.

Sometimes pain felt in the tendons is a result of tendinitis, instead of a rupture or tear. While the person suffering from it may experience pain and swelling, this is caused by inflammation of the tendons due to repetitive movement (such as gardening or painting, or sports such as running, swimming, tennis, or baseball), as opposed to an actual tear in the soft tissue.

Symptoms of a Rupture or Tear

Muscle and tendon tears and ruptures happen as a result of a quick or sudden movement. The most common symptoms are the following:

  • A popping sound during the injury
  • Pain
  • Swelling
  • The joint feels loose
  • You are unable to put weight on the injured joint
  • Muscle weakness

The most common body parts that suffer these type of injuries are:

Complications of a Rupture or Tear

Depending on the severity of the injury, a person may also cause damage to surrounding capillaries, open cuts, or experience a fever. Some of these injuries can be resolved by medical treatment, while other times, surgery is necessary.

Left untreated, it may cause permanent disability. So if you are in pain after an injury, seek medical treatment as soon as possible.

Request an Appointment at The Orthopedic Clinic Today

At The Orthopedic Clinic, we want you to live your life in full motion. Having a ruptured muscle or tendon causes excruciating pain that prevents you from doing that.

Contact us to schedule an appointment and let’s get you back to doing the things you love.

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