What is a Comminuted Fracture?

If you’ve ever suffered from a bone fracture, you know how painful they it can be. A comminuted fracture, in particular, is especially painful because of what it involves. A comminuted fracture happens when the bone involved is actually broken into several pieces. In order for it to be classified as a comminuted fracture, there must be at least three separate pieces of bone involved. This type of fracture is usually challenging to treat because the break is so complex. Adding to the complication is if the fracture is actually open, because open fractures have a very high infection rate and takes longer to heal.

How does it Happen

Comminuted Fractures typically occur with the elderly, or people with conditions which weaken the bone, such as osteoporosis or cancer. Elderly people are predisposed to fractures of any kind, thanks to the process of aging, which cause structural changes in the skeletal system.

Another way for these this type of fracture to occur is with tremendous force, such as a car accident or sudden fall. These events can be extremely painful. This is because the muscles that surround the affected area go into a spasm when trying to hold the bone fractures in place, which causes further pain.

Treatment and Recovery

Our body has a natural mechanism in place to heal a bone fracture. The main goal of treatment is to restore the bone to its original state and let your body get to work. Typically, the treatment for comminuted fractures includes surgery in order to fix the bone. It is critical to put the bone fragments back together and hold them in place with suitable material. This includes surgical nails, screw, plates and wires. In rare cases, the entire area needs to be opened during surgery to see the bones more closely. After the surgery, the injured body part will be immobilized with a plaster or fiberglass splint. This type of fracture typically takes a long time to completely heal. Recovery time can be several months longer than a typical fracture. After the surgery, most patients will need to undergo physical therapy. This is because you need to restore the lost function of the bone and to strengthen the surrounding muscles. You need to strengthen the bone itself and the surrounding area, so you don’t re-injure the area.

No matter what, you’re going to need some type of walking crutches to help you recover. Not only are crutches difficult to get used to, walking with crutches can be painful. If you use forearm crutches, make sure you get crutch pads that are comfortable. Walking long distances while using crutches isn’t recommend, but it’s unavoidable from time to time.

The most important aspect of recovering from a comminuted fracture is to use your crutches. You can do more severe, permanent damage to yourself if you don’t. You must also follow up with your doctor on a regular basis to make sure that everything is healing correctly. You’ll usually be given an antibiotic to help fight infection.

A little tip

How to Take Care of a Broken Bone?

If you have a broken bone, and the doctor located you a cast, there are some steps for you to follow and heal the broken bone. The first few days after the application, elevate the injured area ease swelling and minimize the pain as it was done the first time the injury occurred. Keep the cast clean and dry at all time, also when taking a bath, use a plastic bag to protect the cast so it won’t get wet. If it becomes damp, use a hair dryer to dry the area. Never try to scratch or put anti-aches treatments inside the cast. All the time you use the cast check yourself for any unusual tingling or skin irritation in case of those reactions go straight to your doctor for a check up.