Reviewed By: Pramod Kerkar, MD, FFARCSI

About Stress Fracture In The Back:

Stress fractures in the back are a common occurrence in athletes, especially athletes involved in gymnastics, wrestling, and weightlifting. There have been cases where stress fractures have occurred in non-athletes as well such as individuals who work in the construction industry where they have to bend and lift heavy objects repetitively putting excessive stress on the back.

Anatomically speaking, a stress fracture of the back occurs when too much stress is put on the vertebrae resulting in formation of small cracks in the bone causing pain and difficulty doing normal activities. These fractures normally occur in the lower back or the L5 vertebral level. A stress fracture in the back at times causes the vertebra to become weak and causes it to push forward resulting in a condition called spondylolisthesis.

This shifting of the vertebrae may lead to impingement of the nerves causing certain neurological symptoms like numbness and tingling going down to the lower extremities.

4 Common  Causes of a Stress Fracture in Your Back

4 Common Causes Of A Stress Fracture In Your Back

Overuse: The primary cause for a stress fracture of the back is overuse. This is precisely the reason why athletes are more prone to suffer from a stress fracture of the back. Athletic events like weightlifting, gymnastics, swimming put excessive amount of stress on the back and tends to hyperextend the back which further increases the stress put on the back resulting in a stress fracture.

Muscle Weakness & Fatigue: Overuse also causes the muscles to become fatigued and weak over time causing them to not be able to absorb the stress that is being put on the spine resulting in a stress fracture of the back.

Genetic Factor: In some cases, there has been a genetic link to the development of a stress fracture of the back. Some individuals are born with thin bones in the vertebra which predispose them to conditions like a stress fracture.

Osteoporosis: Additionally, condition like osteoporosis which weakens the bone also plays a role in the development of a stress fracture of the back.

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Pramod Kerkar

Written, Edited or Reviewed By:

, MD,FFARCSI

Pain Assist Inc.

Last Modified On: September 20, 2018

This article does not provide medical advice. See disclaimer

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