The term “shin splints” refers to pain along either the inside or outside of the shinbone (tibia)(classically inside). The pain is caused by an overload on the shinbone and the connective tissues that attach your muscles to the bone. People who have over-pronated feet or commonly named “flat-footed” may be more prone to suffer with shin splints when they try to run any distance. The over-pronation of the feet causes a shift in the tibia, which will aggravate the posterior tibialis muscle that originates on the medial aspect of the tibia. Long-term shin splints can lead to stress fractures which can take months to heal.
A Note from the Doctor: Rest, ice, and over-the-counter pain relievers are your best bet for home therapy. We get great results treating shin splints utilizing myotherapy and stretching techniques. Typically, no more than 2 treatments are necessary to relieve the pain.
Reoccurrence can happen due to the biomechanics of the feet. A person with flat feet that is having shin pain, should be limited in the amount of long distance running they are doing while having the shin pain. X-ray and MRI could be utilized to rule out stress fracture if the pain is persistent.