A femoral stress fracture is a type of bone injury that occurs in the femur, which is the long bone in the thigh that connects the hip joint to the knee joint. It is a common injury among athletes who participate in activities that involve repetitive loading of the lower extremities, such as running, jumping, and dancing.
The condition is caused by small cracks or fractures in the bone that result from overuse or repetitive stress on the bone. It typically develops gradually over time, and symptoms may include pain, tenderness, swelling, and discomfort in the thigh or groin area.
Femoral stress fractures can be diagnosed with imaging tests such as X-rays, CT scans, or MRI scans. Treatment usually involves rest, reducing or modifying activity levels, and pain management. In severe cases, surgery may be necessary to repair the fracture.
Rest and immobilization: In order to allow the bone to heal, you may need to limit weight-bearing activities and avoid high-impact exercises. Crutches or a walking boot may be used to limit stress on the affected leg. Depending on the severity of the fracture, you may need to avoid exercise altogether for a period of several weeks to several months.
Pain management: Over-the-counter pain medications such as acetaminophen or ibuprofen may help to manage pain and inflammation. In more severe cases, your doctor may prescribe stronger pain medications.
Rehabilitation exercises: Once the bone has begun to heal, you may need to work with a physical therapist to develop a rehabilitation program to help you gradually return to normal activities. This may include exercises to improve flexibility, strength, and balance.