Compartment Syndrome

condition in which compression of nerves, blood vessels and muscle inside a closed space (compartment) within the body.

  • Pathophysiology:
  • Edema results due to trauma that compresses and compromises surrounding and distal blood vessels, nerves and muscle.
  • Connective tissue that defines the compartment does not stretch
  • A small amount of bleeding into the compartment, or swelling of the muscles within the compartment, can cause the pressure to rise

 

Etiology:

following injury, surgery or in most cases repetitive and extensive muscle use

Below a list of common causation factors:

  1. fractures
  2. ischemic reperfusion following injury
  3. hemorrhage
  4. vascular puncture
  5. intravenous drug injection
  6. casts
  7. prolonged limb compression
  8. crush injuries
  9. burns

Treatment:

includes relieving pressure through incision and drainage

left untreated tissue necrosis, neuro, and vascular damage may result

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