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Foot Stress Fractures and How to treat them

Stress fractures are a very common painful condition effecting the foot seen in the Corsicana Foot Clinic. Many times this condition is difficult to detect and under treated. This is because stress fractures don’t typically occur from an injury or trauma, as with a sprain, but rather from repetitive stress on the foot.

Stress fractures are tiny, hairline breaks in the bones. They can occur in any bone, but most often afflict the weight-bearing bones of the foot. Active people are especially susceptible to stress fractures but we have treated stress fracutures in people of all ages. Stress fractures frequently results from over training and activities such as running, basketball, and walking. People with abnormal foot structure or weakened bones are also be more vulnerable to suffer a stress fracture.

Stress fractures may come on gradually and may not present obvious symptoms at first, Symptoms may persist for an extended period of time before the diagnosis of a stress fracture is even made. Pain is the primary symptom of a stress fracture. This pain usually worsens with activity and is relieved with rest and elevation of the foot. Swelling often occurs in the area of the stress fracture with prolonged activity but this may be absent.

The most common symptoms of stress fractures include:

  • Pain with activity usually relieved with rest
  • Swelling at the site of the fracture
  • Tenderness and swelling at a point on the bone

How To Treat Stress Fractures:

Treatment for stress fractures are aimed at taking the pressure off the foot. Rest, icing the foot three times a day x 20 minutes and elevation are recommended as an initial treatment. It is important to minimize weight bearing activities until the pain has improved. Other treatments may include immobilization of the foot with a surgical shoe, footwear modifications with padding, orthotic devices and anti-inflammatory oral medications.

Prompt diagnosis is essential to prevent further damage and improve recovery time as stress fractures tend to get worse and may even lead to a complete bone fracture if not treated right away. Dr. Petty will examine your foot or ankle, take a digial x-ray to determine if there is a break or crack in the bone and recommend an appropriate treatment plan to get you back on your feet comfortably.

The information provided in this article is not meant to be medical advice and is for educational purposes only. If you would like to learn more about topics related to podiatry, feel free to contact Family Foot & Ankle Centers by clicking here or calling 972-597-4132 to reach our Waxahachie office, 903-872-9910 to reach our Corsicana office, 972-875-3668 to reach our Ennis office.