We often think of fractures as bones broken in two, something that occurs with acute trauma. If one takes a paperclip and bends it, usually, 4 times, it breaks in two pieces. If you took a paperclip and bent it three times and asked you what is wrong with the paper clip, what would you say? It appears to be in one piece but it is not “normal.”
Looking at the paper clip with magnification would demonstrate tiny cracks in the metal. It is damaged and weakened and if bent again, will break in two. That is essentially what a stress fracture is, a bone that has been stressed repetitively and excessively causing it to form tiny cracks. Unlike the paper clip, the bone will heal as soon as the excessive stress is relieved. Common stress fracture causes include overuse, inadequate shoe gear, or faulty biomechanics in your foot.
Stress fracture symptoms usually involve serious amounts of pain. If you’re ready to find the relief you need with the best podiatrist San Antonio has to offer, schedule your first appointment with Dr. Davis at South Texas Podiatry today.
Continue to think of your foot bones as a paperclip. Bend it four times, it breaks in two, bend it three times it has tiny cracks but is in one piece. A paper clip bent twice has very tiny cracks. This is what we may term a stress reaction. Stress reactions generally cause significant pain, though it may abate while your affected foot or ankle is at rest.
The thing to understand is that we are viewing a continuum of excessive repetitive trauma which causes damage to the bone tissue while that same bone is regenerating or healing. If the rate of regeneration is greater than the rate of breakdown, all is okay. Younger people have higher rates of regeneration than middle age and older people. Other factors such as thinning of the bones or osteoporosis/osteopenia comes into play with age, menopause and nutritional factors.
Stress fractures often do not show up on x-rays until about 2 weeks after they start to heal. Diagnostic ultrasound is a new and quick way to see metatarsal stress fractures. We use high resolution diagnostic ultrasound, the Sonosite Edge system. Diagnostic musculoskeletal ultrasound or sonography is often a good first choice for imaging running injuries. Dr. Davis may also perform a stress fracture shin test to determine if you’ve sustained a stress fracture.
Not always. Dr. Davis is passionate about providing the least invasive treatment possible and will explore other avenues before recommending surgery. Should surgery be required, South Texas Podiatry is fully equipped to help as the top foot surgeon near you.
Every patient is unique, and therefore everyone’s recovery time is unique. Dr. Davis will advise you on the length of your recovery, and will be there to support you at each step. It is vital that you complete any physical therapy recommended to you in full -- this way, your feet can regain their full function.
If you are looking for the best podiatrist in San Antonio, Texas, you’ve come to the right place. Stress fractures, stress reactions, and other foot and ankle ailments shouldn’t put you on the sidelines. If you or a loved one are in need of a foot doctor, visit our office at , or call us at to get more information.