Muscles become weak and fatigued and transfer the overload onto the bone which causes a small crack called a stress fracture.

INJURY
Stress Fracture

ABOUT
A stress fracture happens when the muscles become weak and fatigued and transfer the overload onto the bone which causes a small crack called a stress fracture. They typically occur in the lower leg and foot.

COMMON INJURY
Many athletes that participate in basketball, gymnastics, track and field, and tennis commonly suffer from stress fractures due to the way the feet hit the ground repeatedly causing trauma. Other factors that can contribute to a stress fracture are: increased amount of an activity, increased intensity of an activity or sport that is increased too quickly, the surface to which the activity performed is switched (hard floor to soft floor), and improper equipment like worn shoes.

DIAGNOSIS
The symptoms of a stress fracture are simple, pain with the activity but ceases with rest. Your physician will want to do a physical exam and evaluate the symptoms and risk factors. X-rays will be ordered and possibly a CT scan (computed topography) or MRI (magnetic resonance imaging).

NON SURGICAL TREATMENT
Stress fractures are treated with 6-8 weeks of rest from the offending activity or sport, along with a brace or shoe insert.

Stress Fracture
Image courtesy of AAOS