Stress Fractures of the Foot and Ankle

A stress fracture is a small crack in a bone. In the foot and ankle, stress fractures frequently develop from overuse, such as from high-impact sports like distance running or basketball.
Studies also show that athletes participating in tennis, track and field, gymnastics and dance,are at high risk for stress fractures.

Doing too much too soon is a very common cause. For example, runners who are confined indoors for the winter may want to pick up where they left off at the end of the previous season. Similarly, Those who are new to exercise and try to do too much too soon are also at risk.
Insufficiency stress fractures result when the bone itself is weak, such as in osteoporosis.
Stress fractures are difficult to see on X-rays until they have actually started to heal. Your doctor may recommend a bone scan or a magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scan to detect stress fractures early.
Rest is the key element to recovery from a stress fracture.
It typically takes 6 to 8 weeks for a stress fracture to heal.
Your doctor may also recommend wearing protective footwear, such as a stiff-soled shoe or moon boot.
Some stress fractures require surgery to heal properly. In most cases, this involves inserting Pins, screws, and/or plates to hold the small bones of the foot and ankle together during the healing process.

For more information, visit our website or call us for an appointment to see one of our orthopaedic specialists. Or better yet, listen to the Sports Doctors on Thursdays at 6 PM on Team 1010 KXPS.

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