Tuesday, 02 July 2024 00:00

Risk of Foot Stress Fractures in Runners

The popularity of running for fitness and exercise has led to a rise in stress fractures of the foot. These injuries are often seen in first-time runners who enter races with inadequate or improper training. The repetitive impact of running can cause hairline fractures in the foot bones, especially when mileage is increased too quickly or training becomes more intense without sufficient rest. Runners at all levels risk stress fractures if they wear unsuitable shoes, have flat feet or bunions, or osteoporosis. Symptoms of a stress fracture include pain, swelling, redness, and bruising. Pain often subsides after activity. Early diagnosis and treatment are vital for proper healing to prevent the fracture from progressing to a complete break. Runners can reduce their risk of stress fractures by wearing supportive athletic shoes and gradually increasing their activity levels. If you are experiencing foot pain after running, it is suggested that you schedule an appointment with a podiatrist for an exam and treatment.

Stress fractures occur when there is a tiny crack within a bone. To learn more, contact Philip Hahn, DPM from Advanced Foot & Ankle Center. Our doctor can provide the care you need to keep you pain free and on your feet.

How Are They Caused?

Stress fractures are the result of repetitive force being placed on the bone. Since the lower leg and feet often carry most of the body’s weight, stress fractures are likely to occur in these areas. If you rush into a new exercise, you are more likely to develop a stress fracture since you are starting too much, too soon.  Pain resulting from stress fractures may go unnoticed at first, however it may start to worsen over time.

Risk Factors

  • Gender – They are more commonly found in women compared to men.
  • Foot Problems – People with unusual arches in their feet are more likely to develop stress fractures.
  • Certain Sports – Dancers, gymnasts, tennis players, runners, and basketball players are more likely to develop stress fractures.
  • Lack of Nutrients – A lack of vitamin D and calcium may weaken the bones and make you more prone to stress fractures
  • Weak Bones – Osteoporosis can weaken the bones therefore resulting in stress fractures

Stress fractures do not always heal properly, so it is important that you seek help from a podiatrist if you suspect you may have one. Ignoring your stress fracture may cause it to worsen, and you may develop chronic pain as well as additional fractures.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact our offices located in Texarkana and, Pittsburg, TX . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

Read more about Dealing with Stress Fractures of the Foot and Ankle

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