There’s little evidence to help avoid stress fractures

Fri Aug 14, 2015 4:01pm EDT
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By Roxanne Nelson

(Reuters Health) - Although there are plenty of opinions about what causes tiny, painful stress fractures in the bones of regular runners, a new review of existing research finds solid evidence for only two risk factors.

Having had a stress fracture in the past raised the risk of having them again by five-fold and being female more than doubled it, researchers reported in the British Journal of Sports Medicine.

But only a few studies met the criteria for review, the authors note, so more research is needed to evaluate other factors that might play a role.

Most surprising, the authors write, was the lack of evidence for things related to running itself, such as the surface or the intensity of the workout.