Types of Bone Fractures

Commonly called broken bones, fractures occur when an opposing physical force damages a bone. In order for a fracture to occur, the outside force must be stronger than the bone. Most people suffer about two fractures during the course of their life. Fractures are common childhood injuries. However, fractures in children are less complicated than fractures in adults. As the human body ages, its bones become brittle and are not able to heal as efficiently. When a child's bone is broken, it heals in less time. Many adult bone fractures occur from circumstances that would not damage a child's bones.

Displaced and Non-Displaced

There are a variety of fracture types. As their names suggest, these types of fractures refer to the position of the bone after it breaks. A displaced fracture occurs when the bone breaks in one or more places and the pieces don't align correctly. Non-displaced fractures involve a complete or partial break in which the pieces of the bone remain aligned after the injury. Simply put, if the ends of the broken bone line up, the individual has suffered a non-displaced break.

Open and Closed Fractures

Open fractures are easy to identify because they involve a visible wound. Open fractures break and puncture the victim's skin; closed fractures do not. Open fractures, also called compound fractures, are visible through the skin and generally considered more severe than a closed break. Open fractures also run the risk of becoming infected. Closed fractures, also called simple fractures, are not as dangerous as open wounds because they are contained beneath he victim's skin. In serious cases, victims of compound fracture wounds suffer deep bone infections.

Other Bone Injuries

A greenstick fracture occurs when the bone bends but doesn't completely break. Greenstick breaks are common in children because their bones have not aged and become brittle. Transverse fractures occur when the bone breaks at a right angle to its axis. Unlike transverse fractures, oblique fractures break diagonally across the axis of the bone. Sometimes, the bone breaks into several pieces, called a comminuted fracture. When the ends of two bones are driven into each other, an impacted fracture may occur. This type of injury is common in children's arm injuries. Other broken bones may be the result of a bone-weakening disease.

Broken Bones: Identification and Treatment

Like most medical conditions, broken bones have symptoms. Compound fractures are immediately identifiable because they cause an open wound; greenstick fractures and other breaks may not be as easy to identify. Depending on the severity of the break, it may make a loud cracking sound when it breaks. After the break, the injury may appear bent, deformed or bruised. If the individual suffers an open fracture, the injury may bleed. Broken bones are usually very painful when moved. Additionally, a severe fracture may render the affected limb unable to move properly.After a broken bone injury, it is crucial that the limb stay in one place. If possible, do not move the broken bone; moving the limb can further the injury.

If the injury is bleeding or swollen, gently raise it above the victim's heart. If the injury is a compound fracture, never attempt to push the bone back into the victim's skin. This may cause severe pain and unnecessary damage. Use a bandage or dry cloth to cover the exposed wound until medical assistance arrives. If you are not sure whether or not you have suffered broken bone, talk to your doctor. After a physical examination, your doctor may use an X-ray to determine if your bone is broken and the severity of the injury. If you have suffered a broken bone because of someone else's carelessness or negligence, contact us today. We are ready to help you get the financial compensation you may deserve for your injury.