Stephen J. Schueler, M.D.

Overview Incidence Risk Factors Symptoms Evaluation Treatment questions for doctor specialist Home Care pain control warning signs Outlook Underlying Cause Anatomy

Stress Fracture Tibia Home Care

Home care for a tibial stress fracture includes:

  • Avoid the activity that caused the problem for at least 6 weeks.
  • Apply a cold compress:
    • Wrap ice in a moist hand towel. Do not apply ice directly to the skin.
    • Apply for 20-30 minutes, every 1-2 hours, for the first few days.
  • Rest the injury.
    • Use a walker.
    • Use crutches.
  • Follow splint care instructions.
  • Elevate your leg:
    • Above your heart if possible.
  • Take prescribed medications as directed:
    • Don't skip doses of your medication. This makes them less effective.
    • Be aware of the common side effects that may be caused by your medication.
  • Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory medications for pain
  • Acetaminophen for pain
  • Resume activity as recommended by your doctor.

After healing is complete, home care for tibial stress fracture may include:
  • Tibia stress fracture exercises:
    • Stretch the leg muscles several times a day.
  • Apply warm compresses for stiffness and inflammation.
  • Replace old or worn-out shoes.
  • Gradually return to normal activity before you start to exercise.

Stress Fracture Tibia Pain Control

Medications commonly used to control pain and inflammation in adults with a tibial stress fracture include:

  • Acetaminophen decreases fever and pain, but does not help inflammation.
  • Adult dosing is 2 regular strength (325 mg) every 4 hours or 2 extra-strength (500 mg) every 6 hours.
  • Maximum dose is 4,000 mg per day.
  • Avoid this drug if you have alcoholism, liver disease or an allergy to the drug. See the package instructions.
  • Common brand names include Tylenol, Panadol, and many others.





NSAID Precautions

Stress Fracture Tibia Warning Signs

Notify your doctor if you have tibial stress fracture and any of the following:

Continue to Stress Fracture Tibia Outlook

Last Updated: Jan 6, 2011 References
Authors: Stephen J. Schueler, MD; John H. Beckett, MD; D. Scott Gettings, MD
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PubMed Stress Fracture Tibia References
  1. Francisco AC, Nightingale RW, Guilak F, Glisson RR, Garrett WE Jr. Comparison of soccer shin guards in preventing tibia fracture. Am J Sports Med. 2000 Mar-Apr;28(2):227-33. [10751000]
  2. Jensen A, Dahl S. Stress fracture of the distal tibia and fibula through heavy lifting. Am J Ind Med. 2005 Feb;47(2):181-3. [15662637]
  3. Thacker SB, Gilchrist J, Stroup DF, Kimsey CD. The prevention of shin splints in sports: a systematic review of literature. Med Sci Sports Exerc. 2002 Jan;34(1):32-40. [11782644]
  4. Wilder RP, Sethi S. Overuse injuries: tendinopathies, stress fractures, compartment syndrome, and shin splints. Clin Sports Med. 2004 Jan;23(1):55-81, vi. [15062584]
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