Cookies on this website
We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. If you click 'Continue' we'll assume that you are happy to receive all cookies and you won't see this message again. Click 'Find out more' for information on how to change your cookie settings.

In the absence of obvious trauma, diagnosis of acute compartment syndrome (ACS) of the thigh can easily be delayed, as disproportional pain is not always present. We present a case of ACS of the anterior right thigh compartment in a healthy, semiprofessional rugby player with normal coagulation, who sustained a seemingly innocuous blow during a rugby match. Following early surgical fasciotomy, he returned to his preinjury playing standards within 12 months. Our literature review suggests that high muscle mass, young, athletic males participating in a contact sport are mostly at risk of developing ACS of the thigh.

Original publication




Journal article


BMJ case reports

Publication Date





Nuffield Department of Orthopaedics, Rheumatology and Musculoskeletal Sciences, University of Oxford, Oxford, UK.


Thigh, Fascia, Muscles, Humans, Compartment Syndromes, Athletic Injuries, Risk Factors, Football, Adult, Male, Fasciotomy