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A bone fracture describes a broken or cracked bone. It can be a partial fracture (only occurring in one area of your bone) or your bone may break completely.
While a fractured bone can be painful and interfere with everyday activities, they can be treated through a number of effective treatment options.
We share more information about fractures, including common causes and treatment options.
Fractures can happen after a traumatic injury or accident. They can be extremely painful and cause bruising, swelling and tenderness.
A fracture can occur in one area of your bone or across your entire bone.
While bone fractures are painful, it's important to know that your bone will usually heal by itself and over time.
Regardless of how you have fractured your bone, key signs of a fracture usually include:
Try not to put any pressure on your affected area before you see a doctor. This could damage your bone fracture further.
This is an injury to one of the small bones in your wrist (the scaphoid bone). It can cause tenderness over your bone and may feel worse when you move your thumb or attempt to grip objects.
Treatment for a scaphoid fracture: This depends on the severity of the fracture, but it should heal well with casting. If the fracture is displaced, then surgery might be the best option in order to fit the displaced bone back into place.
This is also known as a stress fracture. It describes a severe bruise or very small crack in your bone. Stress fractures mostly develop in your foot or lower leg and are very common in athletes.
Treatment for a hairline fracture: this usually involves rest, ice packs and over-the-counter medication to reduce pain and swelling. Stress fractures generally heal on their own.
This describes a break in the radius close to your wrist. It is usually very painful and causes bruising.
Treatment for a hairline fracture: if you do not require surgery, your doctor will place your wirst in a splint or cast to heal at home. If your wrist is severely fractured, your doctor might need to operate on it to put it back into place.
This is also known as an open fracture and occurs when there is an open tear in the affected area. This is usually because your broken bone has pierced through your skin.
Treatment for a compound fracture: this is usually treated through surgery realign the broken bone and repair any other damage. You will likely wear a cast after surgery to help accelerate your recovery process.
Open reduction internal fixation (ORIF) is a method of surgically repairing a fractured bone. Generally, this involves either the use of plates and screws or an intramedullary (IM) rod to stabilise the bone.
Successful surgery usually enables patients to return to normal daily activities. It can avoid the need for protracted periods of time in plaster. For certain complex fractures it provides the best possible outcome, and is necessary above and beyond plaster treatment.
It is important to undergo physiotherapy after surgery for a bone fracture. This helps you restore strength and movement to your bone and maximise your recovery with the expertise of a specialist.
We have a wide body of chartered physiotherapists experienced in post-surgery physiotherapy who can help you.