Medical interventions in the management of hamstring muscle injury

Eur J Sport Sci. 2014;14(7):743-51. doi: 10.1080/17461391.2013.878756. Epub 2014 Jan 15.


Acute muscle belly injuries to the semitendinosus, semimembranosus and biceps femoris (the 'hamstring' muscles) remain a common problem in the sporting population. Physiotherapy-led rehabilitation remains the mainstay of treatment, and the physician's input is often minimal. Anecdotally, many different topical, oral and injectable therapies are used around the world in an effort to accelerate the healing of these injuries and to prevent their recurrence. This article reviews the evidence available to support some of the most commonly used medical therapies and the pathophysiological basis for their use. It also presents the evidence behind some of the more promising future treatments for muscle injury, including stem cell therapy, growth factor delivery and potential novel uses of current medication not traditionally used in the musculoskeletal setting.

Keywords: Performance; injury and prevention; medicine; musculoskeletal; rehabilitation.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Athletic Injuries / drug therapy
  • Athletic Injuries / rehabilitation
  • Athletic Injuries / therapy*
  • Humans
  • Leg Injuries / drug therapy
  • Leg Injuries / rehabilitation
  • Leg Injuries / therapy*
  • Muscle, Skeletal / physiopathology*