I’m Ed Smith, a Davis Personal Injury Lawyer. Muscular atrophy also called muscle wasting is the deterioration of muscles. There are two common causes for muscular atrophy; lack of exercise or nutrition, and disease or traumatic injury.
Lack of Exercise or Movement
Exercising puts stresses on the body that stimulate growth and the building of more muscle and bone tissue. This helps us to be better prepared for the stresses our body is exposed to the next time we exercise. When we stop exercising there is no more stimulus or need to build muscle. Since muscles need the energy to maintain, if they are not used the body will break them down in order to use their energy elsewhere. Lack of exercise and a sedentary lifestyle will cause this atrophy. Proper nutrition is also required to maintain muscle mass. If we are not consuming enough calories, especially protein, our body will metabolize our own muscle and convert it into energy to use. This is evident in people suffering from anorexia nervosa as their bodies have not only extremely low-fat percentages, but their muscles are also small and withered from the lack of adequate nutrition, despite rigorous exercise.
Muscle Atrophy – Disease and Injury
Car accidents often cause injuries to those involved. Bone fractures require splints or casts which immobilize the bone and affected joints. After removal of the casts, people frequently notice a reduction in the size of the fractured area. The muscles will have atrophied because of the disuse over a long time.
Nerve damage can also cause atrophy of the muscles. With serious accidents, spinal cord injuries can limit the number of signals that get passed between the brain and the muscles. Paralysis will also cause major muscle wasting of the paralyzed regions. Some diseases that also attack the nerves will cause atrophy as well such as ALS, Guillain-Barre syndrome, and polio.
Arthritis can also cause the wasting away of muscles. Severe arthritis can cause so much pain in the joints that it becomes very hard to move. The lack of movement initiates muscular atrophy as well as worsens arthritis. This, in turn, makes it even harder to move which causes more atrophy and makes arthritis even worse. It is a vicious negative spiral that causes more and more problems. Arthritis can also develop after traumatic injuries and surgeries.
Reversing Muscle Atrophy
The main remedy to reverse atrophy and induce hypertrophy is resistance exercise and adequate nutrition. After a traumatic injury or surgery, it can be tricky and even potentially harmful to begin to rework the injured area. A physical therapist is trained to be able to help people return to normal activities after a traumatic injury or surgery. They will give specific exercises that will strengthen the muscles that need strengthening as soon as possible without compromising the injured area.
Davis Personal Injury Lawyer
I’m Ed Smith, a Davis Personal Injury Lawyer. If you have been injured in an accident due to the negligence of someone else, please call me for free and friendly advice. I can be reached by calling 530-392-9400 or 800-404-5400. When you call, ask for Ed Smith for free, friendly advice
I am on the list of lawyers on the milliondollaradvocates.com who have won cases of a million dollars or more.
- Muscle Atrophy Image Source: Wikimedia Commons
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