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Stress Fractures

Definition: A stress fracture is a partial or incomplete fracture of the bone due to repeated stress. The feet and ankles are the most common areas of involvement.

Cause:

  • Repeated cyclic activities
  • May be predisposed to women with osteoporosis
  • Often occurs in non-conditioned athletes not accustomed to long walking or hiking.
  • Certain athletes may be predisposed due to structural abnormalities in the feet.

Symptoms:

  • Sudden onset of pain and swelling over the bone without a history of acute injury
  • Most common area in the foot is the metatarsal area (in-step area) although the heel and other areas are often injured.

Treatment:

  • Immobilization and rest
  • Discontinue strenuous activities until symptoms resolved
  • Seek medical evaluation and x-rays. Bone scan may be necessary if x-rays are negative.

Prevention:

  • Slowly work into strenuous activities.
  • Wear good supportive shock absorbing shoe gear.
  • If you suspect that you may have osteoporosis, seek medical advice from your physician

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Hospital Affiliations

midwest orthopadic speciality hospital wheaton franciscan healthcare wheaton franciscan healthcare columbia st mary's childrens hospitel of wisconsin surgicenter of greater milwaukee wisconsin health center aurora health care

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