Cricketing side strain can cause a tear of the internal oblique muscle at its point of insertion on the rib or costal cartilage. It most commonly seen at the insertion of the eleventh rib, or less commonly at the ninth and tenth.
Side strains are associated with repetitive arm action. Pain can come on gradually or suddenly, with point tenderness.
How can sports therapy help?
There can be acute internal swelling and in some cases, stripping of the rib periosteum, the outermost layer of bone.
Healing usually requires 4-6 weeks rest from play, so physiotherapists promote rest and gradual return to activity, technical review and appropriate strength and conditioning.
Recurrence rates are high in the first 2 years following injury, so correct diagnosis, usually with an MRI, is useful, alongside preventative management.