Stress Fractures :: Nationwide Children's Hospital

Stress Fractures

What is a stress fracture?

  • A stress fracture is an overuse injury resulting from repetitive forces that are directed to weight bearing bones.
  • Stress fractures are most common in the tibia, fibula and foot.

What causes a stress fracture?

  • These injuries occur when the stress to that area increases too quickly before the bone has a chance to adapt to changes.
  • The bones weaken due to too much activity and pain develops.
  • Lower leg stress fractures are common among runners who train too much, too quickly.

 What are the symptoms?

  • Pain over a bone after activity that progresses to pain during activity.
  • Pain over a bone with activity and with normal daily activities.

What can I do to feel better?

  • Rest. Do not do things that cause pain.
  • Ice for 15-20 minutes at a time.

When should I see a medical professional?

  • If rest and ice are not improving the condition.
  • If you are unsure about the severity of the condition.
  • There are many contributing factors to this injury and if you suspect you may be suffering from a stress fracture, discontinue activity and seek medical care.
 

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