Quadriceps Contusion

J. Michael Wieting, Dwan Perry

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterpeer-review


Quadriceps muscle contusions are most commonly encountered in contact sports such as football, soccer, basketball, and wrestling. Injury is usually caused by a direct impact that leads to hemorrhage and inflammation. Pain, swelling, and decreased range of motion are typically seen in the first 24 hours, which can lead to short-term functional limitation. There can be a variable amount of swelling and ecchymosis over the anterior thigh due to hematoma formation with a palpable mass noted in the anterior thigh. Range of motion evaluation is needed to assess the severity of the contusion. Utilizing a variety of imaging techniques may assist in the identification of a contusion as well as ruling out other pathology. Compartment syndrome is an early possible complication of quadriceps contusion while myositis ossificans is considered if the patient continues to have painful range of motion after 3 to 4 weeks. Appropriate treatment will include cryotherapy and compression to reduce hematoma formation in the early period of injury while avoiding nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs in the first 24 hours after injury. Rehabilitation consists of three phases to limit bleeding, restore function, and return to sport within 5 to 8 weeks.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationEssentials of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation
Subtitle of host publicationMusculoskeletal Disorders, Pain, and Rehabilitation
Number of pages4
ISBN (Electronic)9780323549479
StatePublished - Jan 1 2018

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2020 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.


  • Contusion
  • Hematoma
  • Muscle
  • Quadriceps
  • Strain
  • Thigh

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine (all)


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