Definition - What does Myofascial Pain mean?
Myofascial pain is pain associated with the fascia, the thin connective tissue that surrounds the body's muscles and organs. Myofascial pain may be caused by inflammation or other damage to the musculoskeletal system. This pain may affect a single muscle or a larger muscle group.
In some instances, inflammation or damage to one area of the body will cause pain in muscles elsewhere. When the source or trigger point for the muscle pain is not located where the pain is actually felt, the condition is called referred pain. Myofascial pain is distinct from but may occur along with other musculoskeletal or soft tissue disorders, such as fibromyalgia.
Myofascial pain may also be called muscle or soft tissue pain.
WorkplaceTesting explains Myofascial Pain
Myofascial pain may occur when a person suffers an injury that damages the fascia. Pressure applied to affected muscles will usually trigger the pain.
Causes of myofascial pain include repetitive motion injuries, traumatic muscle injuries, and muscle strains. The condition may also be caused by inflammation or injury to the spine. Additionally, a person may experience myofascial pain due to a lack of muscle activity such as when they suffer a broken limb which must be immobilized.
A person may experience intermittent or chronic myofascial pain. Chronic myofascial pain is referred to as myofascial pain syndrome (MPS). Because of the diversity of potential causes and lack of physical tests, such as x-rays, to identify myofascial pain, diagnosing the condition can be difficult. Treatment for chronic myofascial pain may include physical or massage therapy or pharmacotherapy. Avoiding risk factors such as poor ergonomics may help chronic sufferers reduce the occurrences of pain.