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Tuesday, 30 May 2023 00:00

Symptoms and Causes of Foot Stress Fractures

A common cause of foot pain is a stress fracture, which is a hairline crack in the bone. It is generally thought of as an overuse injury, and it is particularly common among runners and other athletes involved in high-impact sports. Another cause is doing too much, too soon when your body is not in shape. Poor or incorrect training habits may also lead to the development of stress fractures. In addition, footwear that lacks proper cushioning and arch support may be a factor. Gradual pain during weight-bearing activity is a sign of a stress fracture. This discomfort usually subsides after resting the foot or ceasing the activity. For that reason, a stress fracture may easily go unnoticed. Other symptoms include swelling on the top of the foot, tenderness to touch, and in some cases, bruising. Further, a stress fracture may cause sharp pain when taking a step. It can take up to two months for a stress fracture to heal. During that time it is thought wise to switch to non-weight-bearing activities, such as swimming, for exercise. For help with stress fractures of the foot, it is suggested that you make an appointment with a podiatrist. 

Stress fractures occur when there is a tiny crack within a bone. To learn more, contact one of our podiatrists from Michigan Foot & Ankle Center. Our doctors can provide the care you need to keep you pain free and on your feet.

How Are They Caused?

Stress fractures are the result of repetitive force being placed on the bone. Since the lower leg and feet often carry most of the body’s weight, stress fractures are likely to occur in these areas. If you rush into a new exercise, you are more likely to develop a stress fracture since you are starting too much, too soon.  Pain resulting from stress fractures may go unnoticed at first, however it may start to worsen over time.

Risk Factors

  • Gender – They are more commonly found in women compared to men.
  • Foot Problems – People with unusual arches in their feet are more likely to develop stress fractures.
  • Certain Sports – Dancers, gymnasts, tennis players, runners, and basketball players are more likely to develop stress fractures.
  • Lack of Nutrients – A lack of vitamin D and calcium may weaken the bones and make you more prone to stress fractures
  • Weak Bones – Osteoporosis can weaken the bones therefore resulting in stress fractures

Stress fractures do not always heal properly, so it is important that you seek help from a podiatrist if you suspect you may have one. Ignoring your stress fracture may cause it to worsen, and you may develop chronic pain as well as additional fractures.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact one of our offices located in Livonia, and Southfield, MI . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

Read more about Stress Fractures of the Foot and Ankle
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