Emergency Advice on Soft Tissue Injury


Acute musculo-skeletal injuries are common, whether they are sports related, or simply turning over on your ankle. The first thing to do with these kind of injuries is to try and prevent any further damage to the tissue. Initially this means stopping the activity which you were doing at the time, do not try to carry on playing sport with the injury, as this will further aggravate it.

The next thing to do is to use the RICE principle to try and prevent/reduce any swelling from occurring around the injury.

Rest – Immediately stop the activity and rest the affected area. This gives the body a chance to begin the healing process. This should be done for up to 72 hours after the injury.

Ice – Ice is a very effective method of controlling and reducing swelling and pain. An ice pack can be used, however a bag of frozen peas can be just as effective. Wrap the ice pack/ peas up in a damp tea towel and place over the effected area. This can be left in place for up to 30 minutes at a time, and can be repeated every 2 hours.

Compression – Compression over the injured area is another good way of controlling the swelling. A compression bandage can be used if available. Ensure that it is not too tight, and do not go to sleep wearing one.

Elevation – Try and keep the affected area above the heart. This will allow any fluid to drain more easily. For example if you have an ankle sprain lie down with your foot raised on a pillow.

If you do not see any improvement in your symptoms after 72hours please contact us