Treating Wrist Fracture
If you have fractured your wrist, your quality of life can be drastically affected. The pain and lack of mobility in your hand and wrist can affect your day-to-day life in many ways, from being able to button up a shirt to being able to carry bags of groceries. Putting weight on your wrist is impossible until the injury heals completely, so it’s important to get the right treatment in order to get back to your regular pain-free life.
Here at Icon Medical Centers, we have an excellent team of physicians and therapists who are highly skilled and qualified. They have years of experience treating wrist fractures and pain, so if you’re suffering from pain in your wrist caused by an injury, call and book an appointment to get you started on your treatment.
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Learn more about Wrist Fractures
Wrist fractures are quite a common injury, and the most common reasons for wrist fractures we have treated at our clinic include:
- Falling, usually onto an outstretched hand and landing all your weight onto your palm when attempting to break a fall.
- Playing contact sports, like rugby, hockey or football, or sports where you may fall, like skateboarding, gymnastics or ice skating.
- Being involved in a car accident.
Osteoporosis can also increase the chances of you fracturing your wrist as it causes your bones to thin out and become brittle and fragile.
There are a few types of common wrist fractures, including:
- Scaphoid (navicular) fracture
- Colles’ fracture
- Smith’s fracture
- Barton’s fracture
- Chauffeur’s fracture
In order to treat your fracture and heal it properly, it’s important to know the history of the injury, including the degree of trauma the area experienced, if it sounded or felt like something had broken on impact, what kind of loss of function you’re experiencing, and how unstable your wrist felt at the time of injury compared to the present. All of these factors can help determine how serious the injury is, and what the cause of the injury is if it wasn’t immediately apparent. They can also help your doctor figure out if there is an underlying issue, such as osteoporosis.
A wrist fracture can be extremely uncomfortable, painful, and can affect many functions in your day-to-day life. Your wrist pain can affect your hand and radiate all the way up your arm, making it painful and difficult to move or grip objects.
If you aren’t sure your wrist is fractured, check your wrist against these symptoms:
- Swelling in the wrist joint
- Numbness in the fingers
- Lack of mobility in the fingers
- Tenderness and the inability to touch your wrist without pain
- Severe pain that might get worse when moving your hand or wrist, or when squeezing or gripping an object
- There’s an obvious deformity, like if your wrist is bent and unable to straighten
A wrist fracture doesn’t necessarily mean that there is bone protruding from the joint, so it may not be obvious right away that your wrist is severely injured. You should see a doctor immediately if you’re experiencing one or more of the above symptoms, especially if you’re feeling numbness, have trouble moving your fingers, and have swelling. If you wait to see a doctor and get a proper diagnosis and treatment, your wrist can heal poorly, which can cause a decreased grip strength and range of motion.
The severity of the fracture can also differ depending on the type of fracture, and the healing treatments may differ because of the location on the bone. Wrist fractures can be either a non-displaced fracture, meaning the bone has not moved out of its place, or it can be a displaced fracture, meaning the bone needs to be put back into its place. Displaced wrist fractures may only require a splint or cast to heal. In the event of an unstable wrist fracture, the bone may have shattered, meaning it cannot be fixed by casting or putting the joint in a splint and instead would require surgery in order to fully heal.
When seeing a doctor for your wrist fracture, a proper assessment will be done to find out the severity of the injury and what kind of treatment is needed in order to reduce the pain and rehabilitate your joint so you can enjoy a full range of motion again.
Once your injury has been looked at, your recovery journey can begin. You may have to wear a splint or cast for up to 6 months, or sooner if your fracture has fully healed. Wrist fractures do tend to heal slower than other fractures so the following activities should be avoided during this time:
- Playing contact sports
- Participating in any activity where there’s a risk of falling onto your hand
- Climbing ladders
- Lifting or carrying more than one pound of weight
- Throwing anything with your injured arm
- Using vibratory machinery
If you have found yourself suffering from a wrist fracture, be sure to get in contact with us today to discuss a recovery plan so that you can get back to optimal health.