Symptoms and Diagnosis of Stress Fractures

Medically Reviewed by Carol DerSarkissian, MD on May 12, 2021

Symptoms of a Stress Fracture

Stress fractures usually cause dull pain around the site of the fracture. This pain usually worsens while exercising, walking, or standing. Another symptom is swelling in the area.

Diagnosis of a Stress Fracture

To diagnose a stress fracture, your doctor will give you a thorough physical exam. Although sometimes helpful, X-rays are often unable to detect stress fractures. Your doctor may use MRIs, nuclear bone scans, or other sophisticated imaging techniques to diagnose you.

WebMD Medical Reference


American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons web site: "Stress Fractures."
Micheli, L. and Jenkins, M. The Sports Medicine Bible, 1995.
Sanderlin, B. American Family Physician, 2003.

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