Bone Fracture Treatment
Fracture is a simple word that is used to signify a broken bone that occurs usually from a blow or an accident.
Types of Bone Factures
Fracture classifications depend on different factors like:
- Traumatic Fracture: caused by a fall, accident or a fight
- Pathological Fracture: bone weakening caused by diseases like Osteoporosis etc.
- Periprosthetic Fracture: End of the prosthetic/implant weakens.
- Stress Fracture: repeated stress and strains cause this, especially in athletes.
- Soft-Tissue Involvement
- Closed Fracture: overlying skin is intact.
- Open Fracture: bone is exposed, leading to contamination with high risk of Infection.
- Fracture Pattern
The fractures can be of different types depending on patterns like:
- Linear Fracture: parallel to the bone’s length.
- Transverse Fracture: perpendicular to the bone’s length.
- Oblique Fracture: diagonal to the bone’s length.
- Spiral Fracture: part of bone is twisted.
- Compression/Wedge Fracture: collapse of vertebrae in the spine due to osteoporosis.
- Impacted Fracture: caused when bone fragments are driven to each other.
- Avulsion Fracture: caused by pulling of muscle or a ligament on a bone.
The types of fracture in this type include:
- Partial Fracture: bone fragments are partially joined together, e.g., hairline fractures.
- Complete Fracture: bone fragments are separated completely.
- Comminuted Fracture: bone has broken into many fragments.
The fracture’s location in the human body is another source for classification:
- Skull Fracture: can occur in the skull’s base, the eye socket region, jaws or nose.
- Spinal Fracture: occurs in the different cervical vertebrae of the spine.
- Rib Fracture: occurs in one or more of the rib bones.
- Sternal Fracture: occurs in the sternum.
- Shoulder Fracture: can occur as Clavicle (collarbone) Fracture or Scapular (shoulder-blade) Fracture
- Arm Fracture: can occur in the following regions of the arm:
- Upper Arm Fracture or humerus
- Forearm Fracture, which can be either Ulnar fracture, Radius Fracture or both.
- Hand Fracture: usually in the scaphoid bone, one of the carpal bones.
- Pelvic Fracture: occurs in the pelvis that includes the hipbone, sacrum and coccyx.
- Femoral Fracture: occurs in the femur bone usually confused with the hipbone.
- Patella Fracture: is found in the knee especially after a hard blow to the knee’s front.
- Crus Fracture: occurs in the lower leg bones either in the Tibia or Fibula or both.
- Foot Fracture: can occur in the different metatarsals or foot bones.
Causes of Bone Fractures
The common factors that cause fractures are:
- A bad fall or a vehicle accident is the most common cause.
- Aging causes weakening of bones and prone to falls.
- Ailments like Osteoporosis, infections or a tumour etc., weaken the bones, making them brittle and prone to breakage.
- Repetitive actions tire the muscles and stresses more pressure on the bones, leading to Stress Fractures.
- Bad habits like smoking leads to lower bone density, increasing the risk.
Bone Fracture Symptoms
Fractures are associated with symptoms like:
- Swelling or bruising over the bone
- Deformity of a limb
- Pain at the injured region, especially when moved or when pressure is applied.
- Loss of motion of the injured area.
- Bone protruding from skin in open fractures.
- Muscle spasms, trying to hold the broken fragments together, followed by cramping.
Bone Fracture Diagnosis
The doctor performs a physical examination of the painful region and also might recommend the following diagnostic tests to confirm:
- X-rays to get a clear image of the bones.
- Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) to see the extent of the injury and damage to other tissues.
- Computed Tomography (CT) scan is done to measure the alignment and study the complex bone deformities.
- Bone Scan is done to diagnose and track bone diseases.
Bone Fracture Treatment
Bone healing is a natural process that happens on its own. Fractures are usually treated by a combination of the following treatment methods:
Administering medications like ibuprofen etc. is a way of managing pain.
The fractured bone is immobilized by aligning the bones using the following means, some of which requires surgery:
- Plaster Casts
- Metal plates and screws
- Intra-medullary nails
- External Fixators
Bone fractures can be prevented to a great extent by following the following measures:
- Healthy diet that includes calcium and Vitamin D.
- Physical Activity, like weight-bearing exercises will help make the bones stronger and denser.
- Avoid bad habits like smoking, alcohol consumption.
We have a senior Orthopaedic Surgeon on call for any sort of fractures that may arise.
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