Compartmental syndrome is a condition in which swelling within a closed anatomic space increases the intracompartmental pressure to compromise the circulation and function of tissue within that space. Unless this condition is recognized early and treated by prompt surgical decompression, permanent neuromuscular deficits may result. In those instances in which early clinical evidence of this syndrome is difficult to assess, monitoring of intramuscular pressures may be valuable adjunct in the clinical evaluation of patients at risk for this syndrome. The association of compartmental syndrome with a wide variety of circumstances and the importance of an early diagnosis make it essential that all physicians be familiar with this condition. As physician awareness and recognition of this condition increase, the complications associated with it can be greatly reduced.