n International SportMed Journal - Acute exertional peroneal compartment syndrome occurring after prolonged horseback riding

Volume 8, Issue 4
  • ISSN : 1528-3356



Compartment syndrome is a condition where high pressure within a muscle compartment reduces capillary blood perfusion below the level necessary for tissue viability. A variety of injuries and medical conditions may initiate acute compartment syndrome, including fractures, contusions, burns, bleeding disorders, post-ischemic swelling, and gunshot wounds. Exertional compartment syndrome is a well-recognised clinical entity, which can have an acute or chronic presentation, and is associated most often with unaccustomed exercise. This case report discusses a 15-year-old girl who for two years felt transitory pain in the right peroneal compartment when she played sport. After many days of horseback riding, she sustained a sudden increase of the antero-lateral leg pain. The pressure of her lateral leg compartment rose to 100mmHg. Emergent fasciotomy of the lateral compartment of the right leg was performed, and showed partially necrotic peroneal muscles. The reported case is unusual because the pathology was localised to the peroneal compartment only and left the 3 other loges unaffected. Only two other reported cases of exertional compartment syndrome from prolonged horseback riding has been found in the medical literature. The particular mechanism of the peroneal compartment as a result of horseback riding in children is also discussed.

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