What the Experts Say About Fractures
If you’re like most people, you spend little time thinking about your bone health. However, all it takes is one split-second accident, fall, sports injury or poor decision and your bone could fracture, or break. Or, what appeared to be a minor injury can lead to a fracture of the weakened bone down the road.1 At Medco ER, we want you to have a basic understanding of fractures and how to correctly apply first aid on your way to our Plano, TX, facility. Let’s take a closer look at the two kinds of fractures and how to respond to them.
Also called a “closed fracture,” this kind of injury means the bone is broken but not protruding through the skin.
Also called an “open fracture,” this kind of break causes a fragment of bone to pierce the skin, thus, opening the skin into an external wound.
“In the event of a compound fracture,” said Medco ER’s Medical Director, Dr. Nasir Khan, “You should be careful not to touch it or allow any contaminants into the wound. The open skin is prone to infection so cover with something sterile, if possible. Don’t get overly involved in wrapping the wound, however. Just bring the patient to Medco ER right away. Our board-certified physicians can quickly respond to these kinds of emergencies.”
Symptoms of a Fracture
While it is not always easy to know if the bone is fractured or just bruised or the muscles sprained, there are some key symptoms you can look for such as:
- Sharp pain
- Guarding the area, not wanting anyone to touch it
- Misshapen area
- Warm to the touch
- Bruising or redness
- Protrusion and bleeding
- Inability or difficulty in moving the limb
Fracture First Aid
“Fractures need immediate medical attention, but you should first work to keep the patient calm,” said Dr. Khan. “Check their vitals. Are they breathing? Are they injured in other ways? Are they showing signs of shock? If possible, immobilize the wounded area with a makeshift splint, such as rolled up newspapers and strips of cloth. You can apply ice packs to reduce the swelling and try to keep the injury elevated as you come to the ER. For shock, keep the patient covered, calm and lying down. Bring the patient to Medco ER right away.”
How Can I Strengthen My Bones?
Wanting to prevent a potential fracture? There are some simple things you can do to build up bone density and strength.
- Eat a balanced diet with plenty of fruits and vegetables. It is especially important to get vitamin D and calcium in your diet.
- Get plenty of sunlight – at least 15 minutes each day on your skin – to replenish your vitamin D.
- Get help to stop smoking. Smoking increases your risk of fractures and delays healing.
- Drink milk not alcohol. Alcohol increases your risk of osteoporosis while calcium helps build up bones.
- Do simple, weight-bearing exercises to strengthen bones and build up density. The more active you are, the lower your risk of osteoporosis.2
Get Help Fast at Medco ER
Fractures are a part of life, and at Medco ER, we’re here to help you or your child when accidents happen. Our facility is open 24/7 and we have imaging equipment, such as X-ray and CT scan, and treatments at the ready to take good care of you.
Plano: 3960 Legacy Drive, Plano, TX 75023 (on the corner of Legacy and Coit Road)
- Call us @ 469-747-0370