STRESS FRACTURE

Etiology- Stress Fractures are tiny fractures that occur primarily in the foot that are caused by overuse. Stress fractures primarily occur when an athlete increases the intensity of activity too rapidly. For example a runner increasing the mileage or pace of runs too quickly can result in a stress fracture. They can also be caused by the athlete not wearing the right equipment. Such as a runner not wearing shoes that support their feet properly or a runner wearing shoes that are too worn out.

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Signs and symptoms
The most common signs and symptoms of stress fractures include pain that subsides with time and then increases again with more activity. Another common sign of a stress fracture is swelling around the fractured bone. The last common sign of a stress fracture is a specific spot that feels painful when touched or felt

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Management
Though x-rays can be used to diagnose a stress fracture, stress fractures may not be visible on the x-ray for the first three to four weeks after the symptoms become present. If the athletic trainer or doctor suspects a stress fracture an MRI detect them better than an x-ray can. Once a stress fracture is diagnosed the athlete will need to decrease the amount of weight placed on the bone


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Rehab
When the athlete starts complaining of the signs and symptoms that are associated with a stress fracture the they should start icing the place where the injury occurs right away and should try to decrease their physical activity. Next, after the stress fracture is diagnosed the athlete would be placed in a soft cast or boot to minimize the amount of weight placed on that foot. The athlete will typically be in the boot for about six to eight weeks. If the athlete wishes to stay fit while they are injured they can participate in low impact exercises such as biking and swimming

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Anatomical Breakdown-
· Bone: Any and/or all of the metatarsals.
· Nerves: A Stress fracture can trigger any of the numerous nerves in the foot to feel pain including the: Medial or Lateral Plantar Nerve or the Medial Dorsal Cutaneous Nerve.
· A stress fracture will not harm any of your muscles or cut off any blood supply


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References
Stress fractures. (2008, November 22). Retrieved from http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/stress-fractures/ds00556

Stress Fractures. (2005). Retrieved from http://healthcenter.ucdavis.edu/topics/stress-fracture.html

Stress Fractures. (2007, October). Retrieved from http://orthoinfo.aaos.org/topic.cfm?topic=a00112

Cluett, J. (2009, October 06). Stress fracture. Retrieved from http://orthoinfo.aaos.org/topic.cfm?topic=a00112