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SportsMedUpdate
  1. Professor Martin P Schwellnus
  1. University of Cape Town, South Africa

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    RISK FACTORS FOR STRESS FRACTURE AMONG YOUNG FEMALE CROSS-COUNTRY RUNNERS

    ▸Kelsey JL, Bachrach LK, Procter-Gray E, . Med Sci Sports Exerc 2007;39:1457–63.

    Background:

    The risk factors for the development of stress fractures in female athletes have only been investigated in a few prospective cohort studies.

    Research question/s:

    What are the risk factors for stress fractures among young female distance runners?

    Methodology:

    Subjects: 127 competitive female distance runners (mean age 22 years, 18–26 years) who were part of a randomised trial among 150 runners of the effects of oral contraceptives on bone health.

    Experimental procedure: All the subjects underwent baseline assessment (history, dietary history, menstrual history, training history, anthropometry, and lower whole by mineral content (BMC) and bone mineral density (BMD). Subjects were followed for a mean of 1.85 years for the development of stress fractures (confirmed on x ray, bone scan or MRI), and 18 subjects developed at least one stress fracture.

    Measures of outcome: Risk factors for stress fractures (multivariate analysis).

    Main finding/s:

    A history of irregular menstrual periods was associated with increased risk, but not significantly, while training-related factors were not associated with increased risk.

    Conclusion/s:

    Strong predictors for stress fractures among young female runners are previous stress fractures and a lower bone mass — younger age, decreased …

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