by Cynthia M. Johnson, MA
A stress fracture is a tiny crack in the bone. They are most common in the lower leg and foot.
This fracture is caused by repeated stress or overuse from:
Stress fractures are more common in women. Things that may raise the risk of this fracture are:
Symptoms may be:
The doctor will ask about your symptoms and health history. You will be asked about the activities that you do. A physical exam will be done.
Images may be taken of the bone. This can be done with:
It can take six to eight weeks for a stress fracture to heal. The goals of treatment are to manage pain and support the bone as it heals. Options may be:
To lower the chance of a stress fracture:
American Orthopaedic Society for Sports Medicine
Ortho Info—American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons
Canadian Orthopaedic Association
Canadian Orthopaedic Foundation
Femoral stress fracture. EBSCO DynaMed website. Available at: https://www.dynamed.com/condition/femoral-stress-fracture . Updated May 3, 2018. Accessed September 30, 2019.
Stress fractures. Ortho Info—American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons website. Available at:
...(Click grey area to select URL)
Updated October 2007. Accessed September 1, 2017.
Stress fractures of the foot and ankle. EBSCO DynaMed website. Available at: https://www.dyname... . Updated March 20, 2017. Accessed September 30, 2019.
Tibial plateau fracture. EBSCO DynaMed website. Available at: https://www.dynamed.com/condition/tibial-plateau-fracture . Updated December 22, 2015. Accessed September 30, 2019.
Welck MJ, Hayes T, et al. Stress fractures of the foot and ankle. Injury 2017 Aug;48(8):1722.
Last reviewed September 2019 by EBSCO Medical Review Board Warren A. Bodine, DO, CAQSM
Last Updated: 9/30/2019
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