Speed Up Fracture Healing
Archive | July, 2010

Double Fracture Treatment | Double Bone Fracture Surgery | Fractured Bone Healing Time, Symptoms, Diagnosis, Recovery

Double fractures are bone injuries wherein the fragments are in two sections on only one bone. A double fracture may cause some cracks and breaks on the bone surface, resulting to two bone fragments. This type of bone injury is one of the most common types of bone fragments and can either be closed or open injuries. Most cases of double fractures can be treated using internal fixation techniques except in situations when the bones have been badly fragmented and can only be aligned back through the use of surgery.

Double Fracture Types

• Impacted fracture. Impacted fractures are like compression fractures wherein the fragment caused the compression of two bones against each other. This means the fracture happens on the same bone. An impacted injury is also closed fracture, which can result when too much pressure is applied on both ends of the bone.
• Simple fracture. The simpler type of a double fracture, simple fractures causes one long crack on the middle of the bone, causing it to split into two pieces.

Diagnosis

Most double fracture cases are not considered serious cases so they do not need immediate surgery. In diagnosing a double fracture, the doctor will ask the patient about how the injury happened so that he can identify the mechanism of the injury. He will also want to see the health history of the patient. The health history is important so that the physician will know if the patient has an affliction that must be considered in the treatment. After the brief interview, the patient will be asked to undergo a physical examination (PE). Some examples PE include range of motion exercises and lifting of objects which can help the doctor identify whether the injury has also caused damage on tissues, joints, and nerves. The doctor will suggest for some x-ray shots of the injured area. For cases wherein the double bone fracture caused open wounds or bruises, the physician may also request for blood tests to see whether the injury and the open wound has caused an infection.  Rehabilitation or rehab is necessary.

Causes

• Vehicular and sports accidents
• Falling from a standing position
• Crushing of the body parts due to severe impact

Double Fracture Symptoms

• Extreme pain when the injured area is moved or touched
• Swelling
• Bones sticking on the skin in awkward angles
• Inability to put weight on the affected part
• Mild fever

Double Fracture Treatment

Since most double fractures are considered simple injuries only, the use of surgeries is considered as the last option for patients. The most recommended type of treatment used for this type of fracture is the use of braces and casts. Since the bones are only divided into two, the types of external fixation to be used are those which entirely cover the injured area so the bones can properly heal on their right alignments. The use of a sling is not recommended until after two months because the bone’s structure especially fragmented bones can easily stray away from their positions if sling will be used earlier. In severe closed double fracture cases, the patients must use metal braces which can be adjusted through the use of wires of pins.

Double fractures may only need surgery if the fragmented bone has pierced the skin. In this case, the use of pins, plates, and screws implanted internally on the bones may be needed. After the operation, the injured area will be put in the casts or braces to keep the bones from having unnecessary movements. Whether the treatment used is external or internal, physical therapy will be normally employed so that the patients can help themselves condition their body back to their normal working conditions.

Double Fracture Recovery Time, Healing Time: More than 2 months may be required.

Prevention of Double Bone Injury

Using protective gears when doing extensive activities like hyperactive sports can help a lot in preventing double fractures from occurring. As for preventing the recurrence of secondary injury to the bone, there are also a couple of points the patient should keep in mind. For one, the patient must keep the injured area away from direct heat exposure, avoiding activities which will require lifting of heavy objects and avoiding the cast or the brace from getting wet because this can lead to infections especially for injuries which have undergone surgery.

When to Call a Doctor

One should immediately consult a doctor if throbbing or painful sensations are felt following an accident. Sometimes, the pain will only be felt few days after the accident or trauma has happened. If this is the case, make sure to point out to the doctor the exact day when the incident happened. Not immediately asking for medical help may lead to complications such as deformed body parts and infections.

Distal Fracture Treatment | Distal Bone Fracture Surgery | Fractured Distal Healing Time, Symptoms, Causes, Recovery

When we say distal fracture, this could mean it is a fracture that is proximal or near to the point of reference where the endpoint of a limb is located. For example, a distal radial fracture is a fracture of the forearm bone that happens near the wrist joint while a distal humerus fracture is a fracture on the upper arm bone that occur near the elbow joint. Distal fractures usually occur on long bones where they are near the joints. Most of these types of fractures are caused by direct blow to the bone of the arm or the leg or due to falls or any accident that can directly or indirectly break the bones.

Types of distal fractures or Classification

The most common types of distal fractures are the following:

• Distal radius fracture. This is becoming a common bone fracture of the distal radius bone in the forearm. The radius is the bone that is located on the forefront of the arm in line with the thumb. Because this fracture is almost near the wrist, it is oftentimes called a wrist fracture. A fall with an outstretch arm and hand can cause this type of fracture.
• Distal humerus fracture. This is a fracture of the upper arm bone that is near the elbow joint. Although the humerus is considered the thickest bone in the arm, it can also break due to hard blows and falls. There can be damage to the elbow joint or to the soft tissue near the elbows in most of the cases of distal humerus fracture.
• Distal femoral fracture. The femur is the thighbone and with distal femoral fracture, this means that the fracture occurs at about 9-15 centimeters near the femoral condyles or the knee joint. This type of fracture represents high-energy fracture associated with significant trauma for active young people and low-energy mechanism for the elderly.
• Distal tibial fracture. The tibia or shinbone is the second largest bone of the skeleton wherein the femur is the largest. It is attached to fibula and connected to the knee joint. These types of fractures are also near the knee joint and the fracture can occur due to direct blow to the shin or trauma from falling from heights.
There is left or right radius fracture and distal ulnar fracture.

Diagnosis

Distal fractures can have two kinds of manifestations in the form of closed or open fractures. The physician will conduct a thorough examination to check any injury that can be associated with your fracture. He will also feel the site of the injury and check for deformity, bleeding, bone protrusion, and swelling. X-rays will be part of the diagnosis. When there is the possibility that nerves, tendons and ligaments are damaged in the process of fracture, CT scan and an MRI may also be included with the diagnosis. The physician can specifically point what bone is damaged and what other injuries were sustained based from the results of these imaging machines. Rehabilitation or rehab is essential.

Causes

Because distal fractures occur usually in the long bones, most of their causes come from trauma, direct or indirect blows, vehicular accidents, falls or pathological diseases such as cancerous bone metastasis, Paget disease, and bone cysts. Bone degenerating conditions can also cause distal fractures so even with low-energy impact the bones can fracture at an instant. Stress fractures can also cause distal fractures because although stress fractures are small cracks on the bone they can develop into bigger fractures when too much pressure is applied on the bone.

Distal Fracture Symptoms

Symptoms of distal fractures always include the following:
• Swelling of the injured area
• Bruising and discoloration of the skin
• Deformity of the broken limb
• Open wounds and bone protrusion for open fractures
• Numbness or feeling sensation that indicate bone fracture and nerve damage
• Immobility of the broken limb
• Tenderness of the skin around the injury

Distal Fractures Treatment

The treatments for distal fractures differ with the severity of the fracture. There could be the non-surgical treatment that uses traction to reposition the immobilized bone and casting the fracture with plaster. X-rays will further tell when the cast can be removed and then the treatment will be followed by muscle strengthening exercises to bring back the mobility of the injured part.

Surgical treatment will be unavoidable for bones that are out of their places and cannot be corrected with the use of the cast. This is called the open reduction. The incision is made right into the skin and into the broken bones. The bones are located and will be reattached with the use metal pins, screws or plates. An external fixator, which is a device that is connected to the metals on the bones remains outside the skin to immobilize the bone. This will be removed after the bones have healed.

Distal Fracture Recovery Time, Healing Time: 8 or more weeks may be needed.

Prevention of Distal Bone Injury

It is always recommended that anyone who participates in any adventurous activities should wear protection on his body. There is the helmet to protect the skull, the elbow pads, knee pads, shin pads, and body pads just to make sure the body cannot absorb the impact once an accident happen. Still, the most important thing to remember is ensuring that your environment is always safe for you. Just think twice before doing anything risky and tidy up your places to prevent tripping and falling. Teach children about safety and always supervise them carefully.

When to Call a Doctor

A distal fracture can be serious or not so serious depending on the impact of the object or the body to an object, which can injure the bone. If there is an open fracture, consider this as an emergency case. Even when there is the slightest indication that there is a distal bone fracture in any of the bones, call medical assistance immediately especially if the person cannot stand or walk.

Displaced Fracture Surgery, Treatment | Displaced Bone Fracture Symptoms, Healing Time and Recovery

A displaced fracture is a fracture wherein the two ends of the broken bone are separated from each other. Therefore, if the two ends stay in their position, the fracture is an undisplaced fracture. Displaced fractures usually have three classifications and these are the axially displaced, the angulated, and the rotated. Axially displaced fractures in specific classifications are those fractures where the two ends of the bones tilted out of their position that the broken bones do not maintain a straight position anymore. The angulated displaced fracture can be characterized by the angular position of the two pieces of bones. On the other hand, the rotated displaced fracture is characterized by which the bones do not have a certain degree of angle but they are displaced far from their original position because of the sudden twisting of the bones.

Displaced Fracture Types

Generally, there are two kinds of displaced fracture if deformities are concerned and they are the following:

• Bayonette deformity. The fragments of the fractured bones are 100 % displaced. Some of the bone parts are shorter than the others or sometimes the bones will overlap due to total bone displacement.
• Distraction deformity. The fracture fragments went out of their places near the alignment of the bone. A distracted bone segment that is more than 0.5 cm gap is already considered a displaced deformed fracture and this takes longer time to heal.

Displaced fracture can be of the colles, toe, supracondylar, rib or wrist. It is also called a displacement fracture.

Diagnosis

The usual diagnosis for a patient that is suspected to suffer from a displaced bone fracture is the conduct of clinical assessment of the injury to rule out other complicating injuries. Plain x-rays will be considered and if required, the use of CT scans or MRI will also be included so that the doctor can be able to specifically identify the real issue of the bone injury and if other damage has been done. The patient will also undergo examination for ischemia or blockage of the artery, compartment syndrome, and radial nerve injury. If the patient is suffering from osteoporosis, he or she may undergo bone scan density procedure, cortical margin, and trabecular pattern examination. Rehabilitation or rehab is needed here.

Displaced Fracture Causes

Most of the causes of displaced fractures are commonly from vehicular accidents, falls from heights, trauma, and direct blows to the bones or anything that can plant sudden force and make the bone fracture. Accidents from physical sports are also becoming more common these days because sportsmen are becoming more competitive but do not usually practice wearing protective gears with their sports. Osteoporosis and other bone pathological diseases such as bone cancer can also result in different types of bone displacement.

Displaced Fracture Symptoms

• Severe and stabbing pain in the injured area
• Tenderness even with the slightest of touch
• Numbness especially when nerves are damage
• Swelling due to damage tissues, damaged nerves and ischemia (blockage of arteries)
• Unbearable pain when the injured part is moved
• Inability of the injured part to move or bear weight

Displaced Fracture Treatment

There can be many considerations in the treatment of bone displacement. If there is bone angulations or if there is severe bone displacement, the need for bone reduction will be considered. This means the bones will be manually manipulated so that they will be guided in their proper position. If the injured part is part of the leg or arm, the limb will be put in plaster cast so that it will be immobilized until it heals. If the fracture is anywhere on the body including the neck and spine, the fractured part will be supported by a brace and lot of rest to promote rapid bone healing.

Surgery will be needed depending on what bone is broken, how severe the break was and where the fracture is located because the orthopedic surgeon would like to know if there could be bone fragments that must be reconnected, removed or replaced. Surgery may include closed reduction and casting and for severely displaced bones, metal hardware may need to be inserted to hold the bones together. If the fracture has severely destroyed some parts of the bones, some of these metals may stay on the bones permanently but if the bones can improve and heal, these metals will be removed surgically.

Displaced Fracture Recovery Time, Healing Time: A period of more than 8 weeks may be needed to fully heal.

Prevention of Displaced Bone Injury

Needless to say, we all need to be cautions with whatever we do especially if there are risks involved. Sports is an example of activity people love to do but a high percentage of bone fractures come from sports accidents. It is only logical, therefore that proper gears should be worn anytime you engage yourself with active sports. Accidents are unavoidable and anyone can be harmed in an instance by accidents. But we can also lessened the probability of accidents if we can avoid doing risky things, staying away from places where hazards are most probable and eliminating sources that can possibly bring us the trouble of having accidents.

When to Call a Doctor

Displaced fractures are always considered bone fractures that require immediate medical attention especially if the fracture is an open fracture. If there is already swelling, numbness and severe pain on the injured part, call medical assistance as soon as possible because most cases of displaced fractures especially the ones that are caused by vehicular accidents can involve damage to the nerves and other sensitive tissues which can bring about permanent damage to the body.

Crush Fracture Treatment | Crush Bone Fracture Surgery | Symptoms and Healing Time | Recovery

Crush fractures normally happen as a result of osteoporosis. This condition triggers the bones deteriorate and when the fragile bones cannot bear the normal body weight anymore, the bones give in, resulting in crush fracture. The outer covering of the bone is composed of solid calcium, but its interior is not as compact. The occurrence of crush fracture can happen as we grow old but this is most common on people who did not took care of their bodies while they were young. Crush fracture can also happen when the person carries weight on his back that is excessive of his body weight. Secondary fracture on other parts of the body can also happen because of the sudden force.

Crush Fracture Types

• Vertebral Crush Fractures (VCF). This kind of fracture is seen when the vertebrae or spinal column experiences inner deterioration due to the lack of sufficient calcium inside the bones. Because the bones are spongy inside, there are also spaces inside it that makes the bone susceptible to crush fracture. When such incident occurs, the inside of the bones crumble and the bone may misalign.
• Non-vertebral Crush Fractures. Crush fracture vertebra can also happen in any part of the skeletal system. Accidents such as getting run over by a truck can cause non-vertebral fractures. The occurrence of this kind of accident, however, is not common.

Diagnosis

The X-ray is an important tool when diagnosing crush fractures. In VCF, there is the need to see the entire spinal column to check which part has been crushed and how extensive the damage has been. A significant amount of crushed bone must also be seen before treatment is recommended so a CT scan or an MRI would be used to check on the real condition of the spine. Rehabilitation or rehab is important.

Causes

Crush fracture can be caused naturally by old age because as one grows old, so does the bones. If the body is not given enough supply of calcium to strengthen the bones, the incidence of having crush bone fracture is higher. Improper posture that had probably developed earlier can also lead to crush fracture due to the uneven and misaligned flow of force on the back of the person. Tumors, trauma and hemangioma can also lead to crush fractures.

Crush Fracture Symptoms

When you have a crush fracture, you may feel one or more of the following:

• Pain at the spinal column or near the area where there is a fracture
• Misaligned bones that can lead to difficulty in walking or moving the affected area
• Bouts of discomfort
• Tender spots where the misalignment is present

Crush Fracture Treatment:

The treatment of crush fracture depends on the nature, the cause, and the severity of the fracture. Common treatments are analgesia and calcitonin. These can be used for mild to average cases where the bone fracture does not extend. There are cases wherein the crushed bone needs to be filled with bone cement to prevent further deterioration. If the inside of the bone is already severed, the outer shell may follow; hence strengthening the inside part can be the best option in preventing the entire bone from collapsing. A treatment method called balloon kyphoplasty is also available. With this method, a catheter is inserted in the collapsed region and it will be expanded to restore the collapsed area. The catheter serves as the support while bone cement is being added to reduce the case of ambulation. Studies have also shown that using the catheter during a bone cement filling session can lessen the pain.

Newly developed treatment cement called polymethylmethacrylate (PMMA) that responds with radiofrequency when applied to the area also treats vertebral crush fractures. With the radiofrequency application, the viscosity of bone cement that will be applied to the area can be controlled to make the application feel more natural. Because of the normalized viscosity, the injection of bone cement can only take a single step, which makes pain bearable.

Crush Fracture Recovery Time, Healing Time: The healing process may take longer than 6 weeks.

Prevention of Crush Bone Injury

Natural deterioration of the bones happens when these are not given enough nutrients to remain strong. This is why the main preventive measure recommended for crush fractures is drinking two glasses of milk everyday. It is best to start this habit early on so that the body will have stronger bones even if he grows old. Old bones need more calcium to maintain the growing weight. Specialized milk formula enriched with more calcium is available for people with old age. Early cases of osteoporosis can also be prevented with sufficient intake of calcium. A body with good sitting and standing posture maintained by exercise can also lessen the occurrences of the condition.

When to Call A Doctor

You can call a doctor as soon as you feel discomfort in the affected area. When vertebral crush fracture happens, you will experience pain when standing erect. It is best to consult a physician as soon as these signs show up so that the crushed bone can be corrected immediately. Failure to do so may lead to the worsening of the condition. Consequently, with the spinal column crushed, you might have a few inches subtracted to your normal height.

Complicated Fracture Treatment, Complicated Bone Fracture Surgery, Symptoms, Healing Time and Recovery

A bone injury is considered a complicated fracture especially if aside from the fragmented bones there are also lesions found on other joints, nervous trunk, and arteries. Complicated fractures are one of the most dangerous types of bone injuries because it can also cause severe damage on other organs which can lead to other complications. One example is a broken ribcage. In cases like this, the fragmented rib can pierce through the lungs causing detrimental effects on the individual. Most complex fractures also cause internal bleeding so most of the time they need surgery as treatment.

Complicated Fracture Types

• Oblique fracture. This is a type of fracture wherein the crack is diagonal to the long axis of the bone.
• Compacted fracture. This bone injury is the result of two bones that comes from a single bone and the two fragments crushed into each other.
• Transverse Fracture. This fracture has a crack that is positioned on a right angle to the long shaft of the bone.
• Spiral fracture. This is considered a complex fracture wherein one area of the bone is twisted and cracked.

Diagnosis

Complex fractures will definitely need some x-rays so that the physician can properly see the other regions that might have possibly affected by the fragmented bone. There are some cases wherein the x-rays do not clearly show the fracture and in this case there need to be the amplification and sharp imaging of the fracture and these can be provided by the use of MRI or CT scans. Moreover, most complex fractures are generally considered serious cases of fractures that need immediate emergency treatment so a lengthy diagnosis is not needed.  If the complex fracture has caused a wound to the muscles and bone has pierced the skin, the injury should be immediately cleaned to ensure that no infection will develop. However, if the injury hasn’t affected any major internal organs or muscles, the physician may ask the patient to undergo a physical examination. Rehabilitation or rehab is a must.

Causes

• Direct traumas from vehicular accidents, falling, and sports accidents
• A bone exerting stress which causes other bones to change/move places

Complicated Fracture Symptoms

• Swelling
• Deformity
• Inability to move
• Loss of feeling on the affected area
• Feelings of internal pain
• Shock
• Discoloration of the skin due to the internal bleeding of the tissues

Complicated Fracture Treatment

Complicated fractures are mostly severe in nature so they need immediate operation. What is risky about this type of fracture is that it cannot only cause external infection but internal problems as well because other parts of the body near the fracture can be affected. Internal fixation is a type of bone fracture treatment where small metals are placed on the fractured bones to reattach them and get them back to their right places. The metals used in the internal fixation are screws, plates, and wires. These will hold the fragments together until they reattached together. As for the cause of other complicated fractures, other supplementary surgeries may be needed. Complicated fractures can be fatal especially when internal organs are damaged.

If the complicated bone fracture only affected the arteries and other joints, there is a chance that the injury can be treated with the use of external fixation measures. External fixation simply needs the use of slings, casts, braces, and crutches. Sometimes, external fixators are also needed and in this process, metals bars will be connected to the bone and the metal brace will be installed outside the skin to prevent bone mobilization. According to some doctors, having internal fixation is better for complicated fractures because even the smallest fractures can be properly treated. Physical therapy is also a must during treatment.

Complicated Fracture Recovery Time, Healing Time: The injury may take more than 8 weeks to heal.

Prevention of Complicated Bone Injury

Since complicated fractures are caused by extreme traumas commonly received from accidents, being prepared for such situations is the best type of prevention. For possibilities of having a vehicular accident, having airbags or tough seatbelts are the precautionary measures. For someone who deals with sports, proper sports gears are recommended. For racing sports, wearing protective vests can help minimize the chances of having internal organ damage while padding on the arms and legs can prevent injuries on joints.

When to Call a Doctor

Any injury must be immediately consulted to the doctor if it causes extreme pain. For complicated fractures, call your physician immediately if the fracture shows symptoms such as swelling, bruising, deformities, and numbness. If the person with you had an accident and unconscious, this calls for an emergency case as well. If you suspect that severe fractures exist, do not move the person. However, if there is no breathing, do CPR immediately and wait for the ambulance.

Complex Fracture Treatment | Complex Bone Fracture Surgery | Recovery, Symptoms, Healing Time, Symptoms and More

Complex fractures are classification of serious bone fractures which cause extreme damage on multiple bones, joints, tendons, and ligaments. Most of the subcategories of this bone classification are within the range of complete bone fractures, meaning the bones are entirely fragmented from the main body. A complex fracture is also common on open fractures with the broken bone protruding the skin from the inside resulting in wounds.

Complex Fracture Types

• Multi-fragmentary fracture: This type of complex bone injury has caused the bone to be fragmented into small multiple pieces.
• Comminuted fracture: A bone fracture which causes the bones to be fragmented into a couple of pieces. The bone shards caused by comminuted fractures are larger as compared to the bones from multi-fragmentary fractures.
• Compression fracture: A rare type of complex injury, which is caused by osteoporosis. The bones on the spine become easily breakable and soft causing them to compress into each other.
• Rib fractures. Some symptoms include experiencing pain while breathing and having tenderness on the affected spot.
A Zygomatic complex fracture may also occur.

Diagnosis

Since most complex fractures are open and complete fractures, the diagnosis do not entirely follow the normal steps of diagnosing less serious fractures. Mostly, after a brief interview by the doctor, the patient will be immediately sent to the operating room for the wounds (in case of open fractures) to be cleaned and stop the infection from developing. X-rays will be taken and analyzed. If needed, an MRI will also be taken to further point the extent of the damage. The results will be used as basis for the treatment. Rehabilitation or rehab is essential.

Causes

• Traumas from sports and vehicle accidents
• Falling hard from heights
• Slipping
• Aging. In this case, the bones start to get brittle making them fragile.

Complex Fracture Symptoms

• Protruding bones on the skin
• Deformity on the injured area
• Swelling
• Extreme pain when the affected part is moved or touched
• Numbness

Complex Fracture Treatment

Cases of complex closed fractures usually need external fixation techniques as their treatment. This procedure involves joining back the ends of the broken bone and the fractured area will be bandaged to keep the bones together while the wet plaster is being applied. Once the plaster dries, the temporary cast is split into two pieces and then both halves will be re-bandaged outside the area to cover and protect the body part. Moreover, there are some complex fractures which may need screws and pins. These screws and pins, however, are not internally implanted on the body but will only be attached to the injured area via metal brace that is placed above and below the spot where the fracture is. The tightness and position of the metal brace will be dependent upon the adjustment of the pins and screws.

As for open complex fractures, internal fixation or the use of surgery is usually needed to treat them. In internal fixation, pins, plates, and screws are also used but they are internally placed on the body and directly attached to the bone. According to studies, using internal fixation techniques is more advantageous compared to the external method because the bones can heal on a shorter period of time. For cases wherein the fragmented bones cannot be saved with the use of tools, another emergency option is bone implantation. Here, a healthy bone is taken from another part of the body and will be used to substitute the injured bones.

Complex Fracture Recovery Time, Healing Time: It usually takes more than 12 weeks.

Prevention of complex bone injury

There are a lot of measures that can be done to prevent having a complex fracture. The simplest one is to be careful when it comes to engaging in highly hazardous physical sports like football, basketball, baseball, karate, etc. Before engaging in any type of activity, having a warm-up helps a lot because it conditions the bones from the stress that the bone will likely to experience. Having safety gears like protective padding for sports; airbags and seatbelts for your car can also help a lot. Stocking on calcium to avoid osteoporosis is also important.

When to Call a Doctor

An individual should immediately call a doctor if he/she experiences a powerful blow which caused pain or numbness on the area. Calling for emergency help should also be done for open fractures with large wounds and possible blood loss. Moreover, if you will be aware of the symptoms of the fracture, you should call medical assistance immediately because some forms of fractures do bring damages not only to the tissues and adjoining bones but also to the crucial nerves. Our nerves do supply our bodies with blood and if any of the significant nerves are damaged, other body parts will also be affected.

Complete Fracture Treatment | Complete Bone Fracture Surgery | Recovery Time, Healing and Symptoms

Complete fractures are bone injuries wherein the breaks appear on the entire width of the bone surface. In complete fractures, the bones are fragmented into two or more pieces. This type of injury often leads to a severe swelling which causes the segments of the bone to be driven away from each other. Thus, instant immobilization should be done or the jagged ends of the fragmented bone can pierce the skin, causing an open type of fracture. Depending on the number of bone pieces the complete fracture has caused, the treatment can either be an internal or external fixation.

Types of Complete Fractures

• Open fracture. These fractures are caused when the sharp ends of the fragmented bones pierce the skin and create wounds.
• Simple fracture. This is a type of complete fracture when the bone is split into two pieces only.
• Multi-fragmentary fracture. The bone is fragmented into many pieces.

Diagnosis

The diagnosis starts with a brief interview regarding the medical history of the patient and the mechanism of the injury. There will also be physical examination to rule out nerve injury such as range-motion activities. These will help the doctor identify other body areas which could have been affected by the injury. X-rays are commonly requested by doctors but there are instances that even the X-rays cannot clearly show fracture images so the use of more powerful bone imaging equipment like CT and MRI will be needed. Complete and open fractures may also involve other supplementary examinations like blood tests to see whether an infection has already developed on the wound. Rehabilitation or rehab is required.

Causes

• Colliding of high-energy trauma on the bones (accidents)
• Falling
• Slipping
• Overexertion of stress on the bone. With too much stress applied on the bones, this can cause stress or hairlines fractures. Hairline fractures when they are not immediately treated can develop into complete bone fractures.

Complete Fracture Symptoms

• Pain
• Swelling
• Bruising/Wounds (for open fractures)
• Numbness on the affected area
• Tenderness and passing pains on the injured side
• Deformed shape of the injured body part
• Skin discolorations (common in severely displaced closed fractures wherein some skin tissues are pierced by the jagged bone ends. The discoloration is caused by the bleeding of the tissues)

Complete Fracture Treatment

Complete fractures are classified as one of the most dangerous types of fractures. Though they can be treated with the use of non-operative procedures, some professionals recommend the use of internal fixation or surgical methods in dealing with this type of injury. Though using surgery poses problems like infection, it is considered a more direct form of treatment. The possibility of a nonunion bones is also lesser in surgery type treatment because the tools which will hold the fragmented bones together will be implanted inside the body. In summary, when it comes to dealing with details, using internal fixation methods are really advantageous compared to external fixation.

Moreover, cases of complete fractures wherein the bone is broken into more than three pieces are normally treated with the use of external fixation. External fixation involves the use of casts and braces to help immobilize the bones and bring them to their proper alignment again. Using slings is not much of a good idea when it comes to immobilization because this does not give much help when it comes to keeping the injured area from unnecessary movements.

Complete fracture healing time, recovery time: It takes more than 12 weeks.

Prevention of complete bone injury

Using instruments which can help lessen the force applied on the bones can help a lot in preventing complete fractures from happening. Examples are knee and elbow padding, protective abdominal suites, and airbags (for vehicle accidents). Though these instruments do not entirely remove the possibility of having a fracture, it can at least stop the injury from being a complete one.

When to Call a Doctor

Patients who experience pain immediately after having a high-trauma accident should immediately ask the help of professionals. In cases when pain is not felt after having an accident, numbness on specific body areas is also an indication that the injury needs immediate medical attention.

Crush Fracture – Treatment, Symptoms, Surgery, Causes and Diagnosis

Crush fractures normally happen as a result of osteoporosis. This condition triggers the bones deteriorate and when the fragile bones cannot bear the normal body weight anymore, the bones give in, resulting in crush fracture. The outer covering of the bone is composed of solid calcium, but its interior is not as compact. The occurrence of crush fracture can happen as we grow old but this is most common on people who did not took care of their bodies while they were young. Crush fracture can also happen when the person carries weight on his back that is excessive of his body weight. Secondary fracture on other parts of the body can also happen because of the sudden force.

Crush Fracture Types

• Vertebral Crush Fractures (VCF). This kind of fracture is seen when the vertebrae or spinal column experiences inner deterioration due to the lack of sufficient calcium inside the bones. Because the bones are spongy inside, there are also spaces inside it that makes the bone susceptible to crush fracture. When such incident occurs, the inside of the bones crumble and the bone may misalign.
• Non-vertebral Crush Fractures. Crush fracture vertebra can also happen in any part of the skeletal system. Accidents such as getting run over by a truck can cause non-vertebral fractures. The occurrence of this kind of accident, however, is not common.

Diagnosis

The X-ray is an important tool when diagnosing crush fractures. In VCF, there is the need to see the entire spinal column to check which part has been crushed and how extensive the damage has been. A significant amount of crushed bone must also be seen before treatment is recommended so a CT scan or an MRI would be used to check on the real condition of the spine. Rehabilitation or rehab is important.

Causes

Crush fracture can be caused naturally by old age because as one grows old, so does the bones. If the body is not given enough supply of calcium to strengthen the bones, the incidence of having crush bone fracture is higher. Improper posture that had probably developed earlier can also lead to crush fracture due to the uneven and misaligned flow of force on the back of the person. Tumors, trauma and hemangioma can also lead to crush fractures.

Crush Fracture Symptoms

When you have a crush fracture, you may feel one or more of the following:

• Pain at the spinal column or near the area where there is a fracture
• Misaligned bones that can lead to difficulty in walking or moving the affected area
• Bouts of discomfort
• Tender spots where the misalignment is present

Crush Fracture Treatment:

The treatment of crush fracture depends on the nature, the cause, and the severity of the fracture. Common treatments are analgesia and calcitonin. These can be used for mild to average cases where the bone fracture does not extend. There are cases wherein the crushed bone needs to be filled with bone cement to prevent further deterioration. If the inside of the bone is already severed, the outer shell may follow; hence strengthening the inside part can be the best option in preventing the entire bone from collapsing. A treatment method called balloon kyphoplasty is also available. With this method, a catheter is inserted in the collapsed region and it will be expanded to restore the collapsed area. The catheter serves as the support while bone cement is being added to reduce the case of ambulation. Studies have also shown that using the catheter during a bone cement filling session can lessen the pain.

Newly developed treatment cement called polymethylmethacrylate (PMMA) that responds with radiofrequency when applied to the area also treats vertebral crush fractures. With the radiofrequency application, the viscosity of bone cement that will be applied to the area can be controlled to make the application feel more natural. Because of the normalized viscosity, the injection of bone cement can only take a single step, which makes pain bearable.

Crush Fracture Recovery Time, Healing Time: The healing process may take longer than 6 weeks.

Prevention of Crush Bone Injury

Natural deterioration of the bones happens when these are not given enough nutrients to remain strong. This is why the main preventive measure recommended for crush fractures is drinking two glasses of milk everyday. It is best to start this habit early on so that the body will have stronger bones even if he grows old. Old bones need more calcium to maintain the growing weight. Specialized milk formula enriched with more calcium is available for people with old age. Early cases of osteoporosis can also be prevented with sufficient intake of calcium. A body with good sitting and standing posture maintained by exercise can also lessen the occurrences of the condition.

When to Call A Doctor

You can call a doctor as soon as you feel discomfort in the affected area. When vertebral crush fracture happens, you will experience pain when standing erect. It is best to consult a physician as soon as these signs show up so that the crushed bone can be corrected immediately. Failure to do so may lead to the worsening of the condition. Consequently, with the spinal column crushed, you might have a few inches subtracted to your normal height.

Closed Fracture Treatment, Closed Bone Fracture Symptoms, Surgery, Healing Time, Causes and Recovery

Closed fracture is clearly different from open fracture because there is no open wound that shows an exposed fractured bone that is why the term ‘closed’ is used in this type of fracture. However, although it may seem that a closed fracture is no more critical than an open fracture, it can still pose danger to the person because we never know the extent of the injury until further diagnosis is made. There are lots of closed fractures that require surgery and reconnection of bones because the bones are fractured in several pieces but there are also types of closed fractures that only need casting or splinting to immobilize the bone until it heals.  The closed treatment of common fractures is possible.

Types of Closed Fracture

Most of the seriousness of closed bone fractures depends on what causes the fracture. So here are the different types are in this major category.

• Displaced fracture. This is the type of closed fracture wherein the bones are displaced due to hard impact or trauma.
• Pathological fracture. Bone cancer or other debilitating bone diseases cause this type of fracture. The bones become lighter because it loses its density, thus even with low impact, the bones can fracture easily. Osteoporosis fracture is also among the list of this type of fracture.
• Hairline or stress fracture. With the stressing of the limbs due to constant and over training, running, and dancing, the bones can develop small hairline fractures that can lead to bigger fractures in the long run.

Diagnosis

Diagnosing closed bone fractures must be done by the doctor to enable him to assume the severity of your injury. He will ask you about the history of your injury such as how the accident happens and when did it occur. This will give him assumption on the possible condition of your bone. He will also ask you if you have any past pathological bone disorder or if you have experienced injury before the same as your present injury. Physical examination will further his analysis about your condition followed by X-rays. For cases wherein the ligaments, tendons and nerves may be affected, a more comprehensive imaging is needed thus the use of CT scan or an MRI will reveal everything about the condition of your bones. Rehabilitation or rehab is required.

Causes

There can be several causes of closed fractures because bones can break in many different ways. Nevertheless, we name here only the common causes.

• Osteoporosis or other bone pathological causes. Because the calcium in the bones is already depleted due to the degenerative effect of osteoporosis, a mere trauma can make the bones fractured. The most vulnerable parts are the spines and the hip bones because these bones carry the weight of the body. Bone cancer can also make the bones fragile and diseased starting from the bone tissues, ligaments, tendons and the inner tissues of the bone.
• Bone stress. With the overuse of our limbs to the extent of abusing them, the bones can develop small cracks and can weaken the bone structure. The body will feel pain, fatigue, and stress especially on the part where small fractures are present.
• Direct or indirect traumas. Direct traumas include vehicular accidents and direct blows to the bone while indirect traumas are those that are caused by falling from heights, slipping on hard pavements, and from sports injury that twisted and break the bones.

Closed Fracture Symptoms

• For closed bone fractures that involved nerve damage, there can be feeling of tingling sensation on the area and sometimes numbness
• Bruising due to internal hemorrhage, clotting of the blood or due to damaged tissues
• Unbearable pain to the injured area
• Deformities for complete fracture
• Swelling around the injured area
• Increased pain during movement

Closed Fracture Treatment

The treatments used for closed fractures always depend on the seriousness of the injury. However, although closed fractures are quite away from contracting infections, internal hemorrhage can still happen especially if the bone fragments will be damaging the muscles and tissues surrounding the bone. If this is the case, surgery must proceed to repair the damage tissues, ligaments, and tendons and then reconnect the fragmented bones with the use of small metals.

If the fracture is only a simple and incomplete fracture, casting or putting a brace on the injured part is the best option. All types of fractures are painful especially if it is already swelling and the blood is already compressing the nerves. This is why pain relievers are always part of the treatment because without them, the patient may go in shock due to severe pain especially when the anesthesia subsides after the surgery. Physical therapy always follows after the bone has healed to promote muscle strength. Range of motion will be applied as well so that the bone’s ligaments and tendons can regain their solid structure.

Closed Fracture Recovery Time, Healing Time: It may take longer than 2 months.

Prevention of closed bone injury

As it has been said, there would be no fracture if there is no assault to the bone. However, accidents do happen whether we like or not and some people sometimes do not mind if they might sustain fractures as long as they enjoy what they are doing. The best prevention therefore is convincing the people to be aware of their actions and wear protective gears when involving themselves with sports that can possibly injure them. Children at young age must also be warned about the consequences of their actions so most likely they will listen if you can tell them exactly what could happen if they do things dangerously.

When to Call a Doctor

Just watch out for any of the symptoms of bone fracture and you will know if the person need quick medical attention. However, if the person is unconscious and not showing any symptoms of fracture, do not try to move him. He may have suffered from fracture in the neck or the spine or even on the skull so you must not touch the person and call help at once.

Chip Fracture Treatment | Chip Bone Fracture Surgery | Fractured Chip Bone Healing Time, Symptoms and Recovery

Chip fractures, also known as avulsion fractures, are kinds of injuries wherein small fragments of bones are chipped off from the bone’s main structure. This type of fracture commonly happens when too much force is applied on the bones, causing its ligaments or tendons to pull off a piece of the bone where the tendons are attached. Chip fractures commonly happen on children than in adults because they still have skeletal weak point known as the growth plate. This bone area is the one that is still actively growing so if ligaments and tendons near it pulled forcefully, there is a great chance the soft area will fracture. Athletes are also very prone to this type of injury because they constantly do tough physical activities which may cause their muscles to contract strongly. Strong muscle contractions which cannot be managed by the bones also cause chip bone fractures.

Chip Fracture Types

Type I. The fragmented bone is only minimally displaced from the bone’s main body. Do not need surgical treatments and can be treated with the use of simple cast immobilizations.

Type II. This bone injury causes lesions on neighboring tissues but the chipped fragment still maintains a respectable distance to the main bone. This case requires surgery.

Type III- the chipped bone fragment is more than 2 centimeters far from the primary bone. Requires surgery in order to remove or join the detached fragment back to the main bone body of the bone.

Diagnosis

Common sites that suffer from chip fractures are the phalanges, iliac crest, and the iliac spine. The diagnosis starts with the doctor inquiring from the patient about the pain he experiences, the time the injury took place, and the locations where the pain is felt. This will be followed by a brief physical examination which will involve flexing, stretching, and reaching exercises to test if there are other tendons or joints that are also affected. Normally, chip fractures can be easily seen through the use of x-rays. But in cases where x-rays cannot able to show the detached fragment and its clear distance from the main bone, an ultrasound may be used instead. However, the most effective method of identifying the exact location and severity of the injury is through the use of MRI. MRIs are powerful bone scans which can also determine if there are soft tissues that were damaged by the injury. Rehabilitation or rehab is required.

Chip Fracture Causes

• Over pulling/stretching of joints
• Extreme stress applied (sports, training)
• Strong muscle contractions
• Falling and slipping

Chip Fracture Symptoms

• Numbness
• Pain when weight is applied on the affected area
• Swelling
• Bruising

Chip Fracture Treatment

The type of treatment that can be applied will be dependent on the location and severity of the injury. Most of the times, management of chip fractures only require the use of conservative treatments such as application of ice, use of bandages, and having adequate rest. Until a patient has a formal check-up with his physician, following the R.I.C.E. treatment is the most prescribed method. R stands for resting, I for the application of Ice, C for compression to minimize the swelling of the injured area, and E for elevation wherein the injured area should be raised in an angle to reduce swelling.

As for medical non-surgical treatments, there are two options which can be administered on the injury. The first is immobilization. Based on the level of severity, the affected area is immobilized through the use of stiff-soled shoes, casts, or braces. Another method is bone stimulation wherein an external device is attached internally (on the bone) and connected externally (outside the skin) to immobilized the bones and speed up the healing process. Surgery is only required when the chip fracture causes the bone to be severely displaced. Other indications include multiple breaks and if the bone has failed to heal properly even after initial treatment has already been applied.

Chip Fracture Recovery Time, Healing Time: It can take more than 2 months. Rehabilitation may be required.

Prevention of Chip Bone Injury:

Having some initial exercises before putting the body under highly stressful activities can help a lot in preventing chip fractures from occurring. Doing warm ups can also help a lot because it minimizes the chance of having powerful muscle contractions which can chip off parts of the bone. For children, training them earlier with basic exercises can help improve the flexibility of their bones.

When to Call a Doctor

Chip fractures are commonly seen as cases of mild bone injuries so they do not need immediate medical attention. However, if the R.I.C.E method failed to reduce the pain after a couple of days, then it is time to finally seek the help of a physician. Swelling, numbness, and bruising weeks after the injury has occurred are also strong indications that the injury needs immediate medical treatment.