Diagnosis for Foot Stress Fractures
Stress fractures of the foot, considered to be overuse injuries, are cracked bones that result from repetitive impact. They are common to runners, especially those whose footwear does not support the foot sufficiently. Women with osteoporosis are also prone to getting stress fractures. A podiatrist can diagnose stress fractures, starting with a medical history of your past injuries, along with a review of your eating habits, exercise regime, and daily activities. X-rays may not be able to detect the hairline fractures until a month or so following the injury, so other types of imaging tests may be necessary. A bone scan may be conducted, calling for a dose of radioactive material given intravenously. However, the results may not be conclusive, because many types of bone problems look alike. An MRI (magnetic resonance imaging) test may be administered. This process uses radio waves and a strong magnetic field that create detailed images of the bones. The MRI is considered to be the best indicator of stress fractures, because it shows fractures sooner than an X-ray can, and it also differentiates between bone and soft tissue injuries. An ultrasound test or a CT scan (computed tomography) also can be used to diagnose stress fractures. If you believe the pain in your feet is being caused by a stress fracture, please consult a podiatrist for diagnosis and treatment.
Activities where too much pressure is put on the feet can cause stress fractures. To learn more, contact one of our podiatrists from Carolina Foot & Ankle Specialists. Our doctors can provide the care you need to keep your pain free and on your feet.
Dealing with Stress Fractures of the Foot and Ankle
Stress fractures occur in the foot and ankle when muscles in these areas weaken from too much or too little use. The feet and ankles then lose support when walking or running from the impact of the ground. Since there is no protection, the bones receive the full impact of each step. Stress on the feet can cause cracks to form in the bones, thus creating stress fractures.
What Are Stress Fractures?
Stress fractures occur frequently in individuals whose daily activities cause great impact on the feet and ankles. Stress factors are most common among:
- People affected with Osteoporosis
- Tennis or basketball players
- High impact workouts
Pain from the fractures occur in the area of the fractures and can be constant or intermittent. It will often cause sharp or dull pain with swelling and tenderness. Engaging in any kind of activity which involves high impact will aggravate pain.
If you have any questions please feel free to contact our offices located in Mount Pleasant and Charleston, SC . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.