This article is part of our Injury Analysis series.
With the ramifications of a disastrous Week 2 still lingering, Week 3 only added to the league's injury woes, with multiple names being added to the growing list. Let's wade through the wreckage and look ahead to Week 4.
The Colts rookie wide receiver suffered one of the scarier injuries of the year thus far. Pittman suffered what was initially called a lower leg injury in the first half of Indianapolis' win over the New York Jets. He managed to return to the game, but his symptoms significantly worsened after the game. He was ultimately diagnosed with compartment syndrome, a problem that can be limb and life threatening.
The lower aspect of the leg is divided into four compartments. Each compartment is separated by bone and a specialized type of connective tissue as fascial sheaths. The durable walls of fascia surround the muscle, nerves and blood vessels below the knee to provide stability and support.
However, injuries that occur to the lower leg, particularly after a direct blow, are often accompanied by swelling. The design of the tough fascia causes the swelling to remain confined to the affected compartment. As the swelling persists, neighboring structures like blood vessels, nerves and other muscles can become impinged, similar to a hose that is kinked. As a result, blood flow to the area can be restricted and nerve damage can occur, resulting in a wide range of serious symptoms including severe pain, numbness, loss of function and a decreased pulse. If left