Thứ Hai, 13 tháng 1, 2014

Stress Fracture

Stress Fracture Fracture is described as broken bone or cracks in the bone. Stress fracture is the condition in which cracks develop on the bone due to repeated force or overuse of bone. It can occur in any part of the body but more specific in legs and foot bone. Athletes are more prone to stress fracture than normal individuals. Osteoporosis can also cause fracture due to weakening of bones.

Symptoms :

Swelling in the area in which fracture has developed and increased pain are the symptoms of stress fracture. The pain will increase with activity and the area becomes hot and tender.

By taking enough rest swelling and pain will subside and once you start doing any activity there will be pain. Without taking any treatment, there will be huge swelling with unmanageable pain even when you are at rest.

Causes :

Stress fracture is caused due to continuous force and overuse. Usually the thigh bones and bones of lower legs are affected since it bears the full weight of your body. The repeated pressure can produce an imbalance between the growth of bone cells and resorption causing minor cracks.

When you are at rest, new bone cells are added after removal of dead cells. But sometimes when you don’t give enough time for the bone to recover and subject it to continuous pressure it will form small cracks on the fatigued bones.

Who are at risk?

Athletes and sports persons have more chance of getting stress fracture since often they are engaged in sports activities giving pressure on the leg bones. Military personnel and people who have suddenly committed with increased activity like strenuous training sessions can develop this condition.

Women with abnormal menstrual flow and women who are in the menopause stage will have depleted calcium in their bones causing stress fracture. Individuals with various kinds of illness or deformity in their foot may develop stress fracture. Diseases like osteoporosis will weaken your bones making it prone to fracture.

Diagnoses :

X-ray of the affected bone will clearly indicate the intensity of fracture. However the symptoms may not be visible in early stages of fracture for some people. MRI and bone scan is done for visualizing the extent of injury caused to the bones.

Treatment :

The method of treatment varies with the intensity of fracture and on the part of the bone in which fracture has occurred. You can take pain killers like acetaminophen and ibuprofen for managing the pain.

Take complete rest when you have developed swelling with pain due to minor fracture. It takes some time for the bone to heal on its own by increasing the number of fresh bone cells.

If you can walk you should use support like leg brace or splint or crutches for reducing the pressure on the bones. In case of severe fracture your doctor will immobilize the bone with splinter or casting. Surgery is the last option for repairing the damaged bones.

Home Remedies :

You should avoid doing any physical activities that will add more pressure on the affected bones. Apply ice on the part of the leg where fracture has occurred to reduce swelling. Follow the instructions of your doctor to stay off the affected limb.

Prevention :

When you are doing any new exercises always start slowly making progress in step by step. Wear proper fitting shoes so that the weight is not shifted on the bones. In case you have flat feet you should wear special shoes for added support. Include required doses of calcium in your diet and women above 40 years should take proper care for adding more calcium.

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