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Learning More About Bone Fractures

Bone fracture is something that most people know about. However, are you familiar with the details? There are multiple types and other pertinent information that is helpful to know. It is important that if you ever break or fracture a bone that you treat it as a medical emergency and get the treatment required right away.

Exploring the Different Types of Fractures

There are many different types of fractures. A fracture is diagnosed when there is a break in the bone. In some cases, the crack is about the size of a hair, and therefore, referred to as a hairline fracture. However, other fractures are a bit more extreme and include:

  • A greenstick fracture is characterized by only one side of the bone getting cracked
  • A comminuted fracture happens when a bone is either crushed or broken into over two pieces
  • A complete fracture describes a break where the bone is broken into two pieces
  • A bowing fractures is only seen in children and when it occurs, the bone does not break, but it is abnormally bent
  • A open fracture describes a broken bone that is sticking out through the skin and visible

In most cases, an accident or a fall is to blame for a fractured bone. However, there is a type referred to as a pathological fracture. With this type, a disease contributes to a bone breaking.

What Happens When a Bone Breaks?

Almost immediately after the bone breaks, it is common to experience some pain. The intensity ultimately depends on the break, its severity and your individual pain tolerance. In addition to pain, you might notice some swelling and bruising. If the bone is one that bears weight, it might be too weak to do this. A grating sensation and inability to move the affected area are also possible.

Getting the Right Diagnosis and Treatment

Your doctor will examine the area and get imaging studies to confirm the fracture. To ensure that the break heals, it has to be kept immobile once the doctor ensures that it is properly aligned. In some cases, alignment will require surgery. You and your doctor will decide the best course of treatment.

A bone fracture or break is something you want to have more information on. It is important that everyone know at least the types of fracture that can happen, the symptoms and what to expect once you arrive at the emergency room.

An open fracture definitely requires a visit to the ER. To check on other new and acute orthopedic injuries, visit the Walk-In Clinic at OSI.

The OSI Walk-In Clinic is a cost-effective alternative to the Emergency Room with shorter wait times, and right inside a specialized clinic. Immediate specialized care is provided for most new orthopedic injuries:

  • Sprains & Strains
  • Dislocations
  • Broken Bones
  • Sports Injuries
  • New Joint or Tendon Pain
  • Workers’ Compensation Injuries

The OSI Orthopedic Walk-In Clinic is for non-life-threatening situations that require immediate attention. Services to address chronic pain, severe fractures and non-orthopedic issues are not provided.

Open 10:00 A.M. – 5:00 P.M., Monday – Friday. Please call 920.560.1199 to speak directly with the triage nurse.