A stress fracture can occur in any bone in your foot and ankle. Your symptoms may be mild at first, but they should never be ignored; without treatment your stress fracture may not heal properly. The board-certified podiatrists at FOOTDRx have extensive experience treating stress fractures so you can get back into action. If you have questions about your symptoms or you’d like to schedule an appointment, use the online booking feature or call one of the New York City offices in Union Square, Midtown East in Manhattan, or Bushwick Brooklyn; or contact the New Jersey location in Englewood.
A stress fracture is a small crack in the surface of a bone. These tiny injuries, often called overuse injuries, develop gradually as you repeat the same movements without giving your bones and muscles enough time to heal between activities.
Repetitive activities don’t produce enough force to cause an acute fracture. They do, however, result in microscopic damage that turns into a small crack.
Any repetitive movements can lead to a stress fracture, yet the most common cause is suddenly increasing your physical activity. You might increase the intensity of your training or start to exercise more often or longer. If you don’t get a lot of exercise, suddenly starting a walking program can be enough to produce a stress fracture.
Ill-fitting footwear, improper technique or equipment, and a change in surface can all contribute to stress fractures. You’re also at a high risk if you have osteoporosis.
Stress fractures cause symptoms such as:
Though it’s not common, you may notice some bruising at the site of the stress fracture.
If you suspect you have a stress fracture, take a break from your activities and implement the RICE protocol: rest, ice, compression (with an elastic bandage), and elevation. Then the next step is to schedule an appointment at FOOTDRx for a thorough evaluation and treatment.
Each person’s treatment is individualized to meet their unique needs, but conservative therapies for a stress fracture often include crutches, modified activities, protective footwear, or casting. In cases where the bone fails to heal, you may need surgery to stabilize the bone with pins, screws, and plates.
It takes about 6-8 weeks for a stress fracture to heal. During that time, it’s important to engage in only the activities that are cleared by your provider at FOOTDRx. If you return to action too soon, you risk reinjuring the bone and developing chronic problems.
If you have questions about stress fractures or you’d like to schedule an appointment, call FOOTDRx or use the online booking feature.