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Fractures

Also called: Broken bone

Summary

A fracture is a break, usually in a bone. If the broken bone punctures the skin, it is called an open or compound fracture. Fractures commonly happen because of car accidents, falls, or sports injuries. Other causes are low bone density and osteoporosis, which cause weakening of the bones. Overuse can cause stress fractures, which are very small cracks in the bone.

Symptoms of a fracture are

  • Intense pain
  • Deformity - the limb looks out of place
  • Swelling, bruising, or tenderness around the injury
  • Numbness and tingling
  • Problems moving a limb

You need to get medical care right away for any fracture. An x-ray can tell if your bone is broken. You may need to wear a cast or splint. Sometimes you need surgery to put in plates, pins or screws to keep the bone in place.

Diagnosis and Tests

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Prevention and Risk Factors

  • From the National Institutes of Health (National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases) Also in
  • (Consumers Union of U.S.) - PDF
  • From the National Institutes of Health (National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases)
  • From the National Institutes of Health (National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases)

Treatments and Therapies

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Living With

Specifics

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Images

Statistics and Research

  • From the National Institutes of Health (National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases)

Clinical Trials

  • From the National Institutes of Health (National Institutes of Health)

Journal Articles References and abstracts from MEDLINE/PubMed (National Library of Medicine)

Find an Expert

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Children

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  • (Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research)
  • From the National Institutes of Health (National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases) Also in
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Seniors

  • From the National Institutes of Health (National Institute on Aging) Also in

Patient Handouts

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