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Mil Med. 1992 Jul;157(7):334-8.

Factors associated with stress fracture in young army women: indications for further research.

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  • 1Division of Occupational Physiology, U.S. Army Research Institute of Environmental Medicine, Natick, MA 01760-5007.


Several factors which affect bone density and predict risk of osteoporosis (e.g., ethnic origin, amenorrhea) are reportedly associated with a higher incidence of stress fracture in active premenopausal women. The authors surveyed 2,312 active duty Army women for the prevalence of ever having been diagnosed ("told by a doctor") with a stress fracture (16.1% of respondents) and examined the relationship between surveyable risk factors for low bone density and this self-reported stress fracture history (self-reported SF). Current smoking, previous history of amenorrhea (menses absent greater than 6 months), and known family history of osteoporosis were significantly associated with self-reported SF, while black ethnic origin was a protective factor. These data suggest hypotheses of stress fracture pathogenesis in Army women which bear further testing.

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