Bones break due to many causes, which can be right from a sports injury to an accidental fall. Bones usually break due to a strong impact. Normally bones are quite strong on their own, but they do have their limits. Apart from the pain when a bone breaks they can also cause injuries which bleed. Some diseases like cancer and osteoporosis lead to bone break, since these diseases make the bones weaker and fragile.
Types of bone break
Your physician will classify a bone break or fracture citing certain terms for it.
Closed or open break: Closed break or simple fracture don’t break through the skin whereas open break means the broken bone breaks through the skin and causes bleeding.
Partial or complete break: Partial breaks don’t go all the way through the bone whereas complete break means the bone is broken into two or more pieces.
Displaced or non-displaced break: If the broken pieces of the bone can still be lined-up then it is a non-displaced break and if it cannot be lined-up it is a displaced break.
How do you feel the break?
Very mild fractures are sometimes not felt and we even don’t know about it, this is especially so in kids. Other larger fractures will cause shock and you will not feel anything for some time. A broken bone otherwise causes a deep, intense ache or pain. Depending on the severity of the break you many feel sharp pain too.
What are the other symptoms?
Apart from the pain the body gives out all signals to say something is wrong with it. The patient will feel chilly, dizzy or even pass out. Around the break you will notice bruising, stiffness, swelling, warmth and weakness. You will have trouble using that body part and notice some sort a deformity.
What’s bone repair?
Our bones have this special way of repairing themselves and bone repair starts within few hours of the injury. In 4-21 day you get a soft callus around the broken bone. A callus is stiffer than a clot but is not strong enough. After 2 weeks cells called osteoblasts move in and get to work forming the new bone.
What are the treatments?
Treatment for basic breaks is first to get the bone lined-up, then put it in a cast to make sure it does not move until it is healed and finally to manage the pain. Treatment for more complex breaks may need surgery including some implants, screws, pins, rods and plates so bone bones can heal properly.
In rare cases you may need traction, which means putting pulleys and weights near your hospital bed to keep your bones in position.