Broken Arm: Symptoms, Diagnosis, Treatment Options and Medications

Broken Arm: Symptoms, Diagnosis, Treatment Options and Medications

Broken Arm Treatment

Generally, a broken arm will involve one or more of the bones in your arm. The most common cause of a broken arm is known to be falling onto a hand that is outstretched. It’s critical that you get your broken arm checked out as immediately as possible for the proper healing to occur. You don’t want to live with a broken arm, right? Read the following article to get a deep insight into the broken arm treatment here:

broken arm treatment

Broken Arm Symptoms

The first indication that you have a broken arm is a snap or a cracking sound. You can also identify a broken arm with the following symptoms:

  • Severe pain
  • Swelling
  • Bruising
  • Deformities
  • Inability to rotate your arm

So, when to consult a doctor? If you are experiencing pain and you aren’t able to use your arm normally, consult a doctor immediately. Delay in the diagnosis and/or treatment, especially in children, will result in poor healing.

What’s in the Diagnosis of Broken Arm?

During the diagnosis, your physician will investigate your arm for the signs of a wound, swelling, deformities, or tenderness. In order to confirm the diagnosis and to determine the place and severity of the problem, he/she may order for the imaging tests like X-rays, MRI, and so on.

broken arm diagnosis

What are the treatment options available?

As such, the treatment will depend on the type of injury. In general, fractures are classified into the following classes:

  • Open: Here, the broken bone would have pierced the skin.
  • Closed: Here, the skin will remain unbroken.
  • Displaced: In this type, the bone fragments on either side of the break will not be aligned.
  • Comminuted: In this, the bone would have been broken into pieces.
  • Green stick: Here, the bone will be cracked but will not break all the way, just like a green stick.
  • Buckle: Here, one side of your bone will be compressed, which will make the other side to bend to form a buckle.

Among these types of fractures, the open fracture will require aggressive treatment to reduce the infection risk. On the other hand, displaced and comminuted fractures will require surgery.

Let’s see more about the treatments here:

Setting your bone:

If you are suffering from a displaced fracture, your physician might have to move the fragments back into position. You may require a muscle relaxant and a sedative or a general anesthesia prior to this procedure depending on the severity of pain.

Immobilizing the bone:

Limiting the movement of the broken bone is important for the healing process to take place. As such, immobilization can be done using a high-quality arm sling, a brace, or a cast. If you need a cast, your physician will wait until the swollen part gets well. During this time, you will be asked to wear a splint.

During the healing process, your doctor may order for another X-ray to ensure that bones have not shifted.

What are the probable medications?

In order to decrease the amount of pain and inflammation, you might be given over-the-counter pain relievers. However, if the pain is very severe, you may be given prescription medications containing a narcotic.

If you are experiencing an open fracture, you will have a cut or wound in the skin close to the wound site. In such cases, you will be given antibiotics to prevent infections.

Surgical Procedures:

A surgery might be required in order to stabilize some fractures. Fixation devices like a wire, plate, nail, and screw will be required to hold the bones in position during the healing process.

As mentioned earlier, if the fracture did not cut the skin, your surgeon will wait until the swelling settles down before carrying out the surgery. Immobilizing your arm from moving and rising with the help of an arm sling will help reduce swelling.

Rehabilitation Therapy:

Rehabilitation therapy will begin right after the initial treatment. In most of the cases, you will be asked to start some motion to avoid stiffness even when you are wearing a cast or sling. After the removal of cast or sling, additional rehabilitation exercises and physical therapy will be prescribed in order to restore your muscle strength, joint movements, and flexibility.










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