What are stress fractures of the foot?
A stress fracture is a very small, fine break in the bone caused by continuous overuse. While stress fractures can occur in many bones that are subjected to repetitive activities, the bones of the legs and feet are at greatest risk. The bones in the midfoot (metatarsals) in runners are especially at risk for stress fractures.
What causes stress fractures of the foot?
A sudden increase in physical activity is often the cause of stress fractures in feet. The increase can be either in the frequency or the intensity of movement. Examples include such things as increasing the number of days you exercise from 2 to 4, or running 3 miles instead of your usual 1 mile. Stress fractures often occur in the foot after training for basketball, running, and other sports as well as in military recruits.
People who are not athletes can also get stress fractures. New shoes that fail to absorb repetitive walking forces can lead to stress fractures. Stress fractures also occur in people who walk unusually long distances or on uneven ground.
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Online Medical Reviewer: Daphne Pierce-Smith RN MSN
Online Medical Reviewer: Raymond Turley Jr PA-C
Online Medical Reviewer: Thomas N Joseph MD
Date Last Reviewed: 7/1/2021
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