What Is Compartment Syndrome?
In many parts of the body, muscles (along with the nerves and blood vessels that run alongside and through them) are enclosed in a "compartment" formed of a tough membrane called fascia. When muscles become swollen, they can fill the compartment to capacity, causing interference with nerves and blood vessels as well as damage to the muscles themselves. The resulting painful condition is referred to as compartment syndrome.
Acute Compartment Syndrome
Compartment syndrome may be caused by a one-time traumatic injury (acute compartment syndrome), such as:
Chronic Exertional Compartment Syndrome
Compartment syndrome may also be caused by ongoing overuse (chronic exertional compartment syndrome), which may occur, for example, in long-distance running.