Foot and Ankle Stress Fractures: Rest and Recovery

Stephen D. Lasday, DPM Foot Pain, Podiatrist Sarasota and Bradenton

Stress Fractures: Rest and RecoveryIf your diagnosed with a stress fracture in your foot or ankle, rest becomes the key word to your recovery!

Ignoring the pain and continuing the activity that may have caused the stress fracture in the first place can have serious consequences. You may break your bone completely!

Treatment of Stress Fractures

Treatment will certainly vary depending on the location of your stress fracture and its severity.

The overarching goal of any treatment is to help you return to all the activities you love. But in order to do that, you must follow doctor’s orders! Sometimes that is easier said than done, but in doing so, you will reach your goal of total recovery more quickly.


Take a break from the activity that caused the stress fracture. It typically takes about 6 to 8 weeks for a stress fracture to heal. During that time, switch to low-impact activities such as swimming and cycling. And, only exercise if you’ve already cleared it with your doctor!

Protective footwear

You might need to wear a stiff-soled shoe or a removable short-leg fracture brace shoe while you’re healing. This will protect your foot and expedite healing.


Stress fractures in the fifth metatarsal bone or in the navicular or talus bones take longer to heal, therefore you might need a cast  for your foot. This will keep your foot in a fixed position and aid in healing.


Some stress fractures require surgery to heal properly. In most cases, this involves supporting the bones by inserting a type of fastener such as pins, screws, and/or plates.


Once your stress fracture has healed and you are pain-free, it’s time to return to your previous activities! Keep these words in mind when doing so: slow and gradual! You should gradually return to your activities, mostly likely coupled with alternate days of rest. Slowly increase the frequency, duration, and intensity of your exercise.

Remember, if the activity that caused the stress fracture in the first place is resumed too quickly, larger stress fractures may develop. This could lead to more problems…take your time and don’t rush it!

If you or a loved one are experiencing heel pain or heel problems, Sarasota or Bradenton is the place to be! Please schedule an appointment with Dr. Lasday, Dr. Zdancewicz, or Dr. Goecker for a thorough and professional evaluation, either in our Bradenton Podiatry office at (941) 753-9599 or our Sarasota Podiatry office at (941) 366-2627.

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