Most muscle strains (pulled muscles) are caused by overstretching muscles. Strains may be minor or severe, such as a torn muscle or tendon.
Symptoms of a muscle strain can vary depending on how severe the strain is and may include:
- Pain and tenderness that is worse with movement.
- Swelling and bruising.
- Normal or limited muscle movement.
- A bulge or deformity at the site of a complete tear.
Recovery time for a muscle strain can vary depending on a person's age and health and the type and severity of the strain. While a minor strain often heals well with home treatment, a severe strain may require medical treatment. If a severe strain is not treated, a person may have long-term pain, limited movement, and deformity.
Current as of: July 1, 2021
Author: Healthwise Staff
Medical Review:William H. Blahd Jr. MD, FACEP - Emergency Medicine & Adam Husney MD - Family Medicine & Kathleen Romito MD - Family Medicine & David Messenger MD - Emergency Medicine, Critical Care Medicine