Shin Splints have traditionally been a term used to describe the pain felt typically along the inside edge or the front of the lower leg. However, this term is no longer used as a diagnosis as research has more clearly identified a number of problems that may have overlapping symptoms but are quite different in origin.
The two more common complaints associated with pain along the inside edge or the front of the lower leg are:
The muscles in the limbs are split into sections or compartments surrounded by strong, fibrous tissue with little elasticity (called fascia), which also attach to bone, in effect wrapping up the different muscle groups. Every compartment has a blood and nerve supply.
During exercise, muscle bulk increases by up to a fifth. If certain muscles have been put under excessive repetitive load and overworked, the pressure within the corresponding enclosed compartment may increase to the point where it interferes with the blood supply to the structures within. This results in a cascade of events with disruption of normal muscle metabolism, cell death and leakage of fluid from blood vessels that further increases the pressure.