physica tas logo

Physica e-Newsletter
August 2013

Join Our Mailing List!
Quick Links
Physica Website  

Find us on Facebook 


 Stress Fractures

Stress fractures are cracks that develop in bones, usually due to the combination of overuse and inadequate recovery time. All of our daily activities such as walking, movement, work, exercise and sports place varying levels of strain on the bones of the body. The bones undergo a continual process of repair and changes in response to the loads they withstand. Stress fractures can occur when high levels of strain are repeatedly placed on a particular bone, and there is inadequate recovery time for the bone tissue to repair completely. The bone first develops a stress reaction, and if unrecognized, this may progress to a partial or full thickness crack or "fracture"throughthe bone.





Stress fractures commonly occur in the weight bearing bones of the body, such as the bones of the lower leg and feet. Examples are the talus, navicular or metatarsals. These fractures commonly develop with a change in usual activity level. This may include an increase in training load, increased training intensity or a new type of training. Stress fractures may also develop as a result of poor fitting footwear, change in sports playing surface (eg.clay or grass tennis court) or due to underlying bone changes such as osteoporosis.


Signs and symptoms that may indicate 'bone stress' include:

  • Pain with repetitive loading that gets worse as the activity is continued
  • Reduction of pain with rest
  • Localised swelling 
  • Tenderness when touching the affected area

Stress fractures are often not detected with plain x-rays. If your physiotherapist suspects a stress fracture scans may be ordered such as a CT scan or MRI to confirm the diagnosis.  


Treatment of stress fractures primarily involves rest from the aggravating activity. Stress fractures occurring in the leg or foot may require a specialized boot or brace to support the bones while they are healing. This may take up to 6-8 weeks for full healing to occur.


All physica staff are trained in the diagnosis and management of stress fractures. Your physiotherapist will assess the problem,  arrange appropriate investigations and then implement the best treatment available. This will be followed by prescription of a rehabilitation program to return to  sport and work and  ASAP.


Physica News 

Grant Freckleton from the Ringwood Clinic has recently been accepted into the Masters of Physiotherapy degree (Musculoskeletal Physiotherapy) at Melbourne University. We would like to congratulate Grant and wish him well over the next two years of study. On completion of this degree there will be a total of 10 Masters trained physiotherapists at the Ringwood Clinic.


Greg Collis-Brown spent half a day this week teaching fourth year Physiotherapy students at Latrobe University. Greg was accompanied by Ken Niere, (Specialist Musculoskeletal Physiotherapist) and taught manipulation of the cervical spine.


The team at Physica wish you and your family good health. If there is anything we can do to help you with your aches and pains, fitness or general health please do not hesitate to contact us.

Physica Spinal and Physiotherapy Clinics
25 Wantirna Rd
Ringwood Vic 3134
ph 9870 8193

also at
Physica Devonport
Physica Shearwater
Physica Latrobe