In this Ask Dr. Geier video, I discuss a common stress fracture of the heel and how it occurs. I then offer some conventional treatment options to help it heal, as well as a less traditional treatment that is occasionally used for stress fractures and other musculoskeletal injuries – shockwave therapy.

Please understand, in this video, I am not giving you medical advice. This is meant for general information and educational purposes only.

Stress fractures are common overuse injuries, and a calcaneus stress fracture is especially common in a runner or running athlete. Treatment is almost always nonsurgical. Rest from running, wearing a walking boot or protective shoe, and often decreasing the patient’s weight-bearing status is usually sufficient to get the fracture to heal. The athlete is usually held out of running until the fracture heals. Then running is slowly reintroduced into the athlete’s training. While the fracture is healing, non-weight-bearing, non-impact activities such as swimming and stationary bike riding can be performed. There are usually no long-term consequences of this injury. It is important for someone who suffers a calcaneus stress fracture to consider a bone density study to evaluate for osteoporosis. 

Patient wit heel pain from a calcaneus stress fracture

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If you have a tendon or ligament injury and you want to see someone who truly knows about bone and joint injuries in athletes and active people, I’d be happy to help. I’m a double-board certified orthopedic surgeon and sports medicine specialist. I’d love to talk to you about all your options to recover from injury, not just surgery, cortisone shots, and physical therapy. Go to the Contact page to request an appointment to see me.

I’m Dr. David Geier. Thank you for watching, and I look forward to helping you feel and perform Better Than Ever.