When the continuity of bone tissue is totally or partially interrupted, a bone fracture occurs. As a result of the break, the shape of the bone is altered. These fractures can happen in a straight line or all the way down a bone’s length. A fracture can break a bone into multiple fragments or split it in half. Fractures can be treated in a variety of ways, depending on your healthcare professional.
There are different types of bone fractures, and each type can have minor variations.
- Open fracture: A fracture in which the bone breaks through the skin and can be seen outside the wound is known as an open fracture. This is referred to as a complex fracture.
- Closed fracture: If the injury does not break open the skin, it’s called a closed fracture. It is also referred to as a simple fracture.
- Partial fracture: a type of fracture in which the break does not reach all the way through the bone.
- Complete fracture: When a bone breaks completely, it is divided into two or more fragments.
- Stable fracture: The shattered ends of the bone are almost perfectly aligned.
- Displaced Fracture: The broken ends of the bone are separated by a space. A displaced fracture may require surgery to repair.
To characterize partial, full, open, and closed fractures, a healthcare professional may use additional terminology. These are some of the terms:
- Transverse fractures: are breaks in the bone that run in a straight line. This type of fracture can be caused by traumatic events such as falls or car accidents.
- Spiral Fracture: This is a type of fracture in which the bone spirals around itself. Spiral fractures affect the long bones of the body, most commonly the femur, tibia, and fibula in the legs. They can also occur in the long bones of the arms. Twisting injuries experienced through sports or during a violent attack create spiral fractures.
- Greenstick fracture: The bone is fractured partially on one side but does not break entirely, because the rest of the bone can bend. This type is more common among children.
- Hairline fracture: It is a thin, partial fracture of the bone. These fractures are commonly caused by repetitive motions such as running.
- Compression fracture: It occurs when bones are squashed or flattened. These fractures are most common in the spine and can result in the collapse of your vertebrae. Compression fractures are most commonly caused by osteoporosis.
- Impacted fracture: When a bone fractures, a portion of the broken bone may collide with another bone.
- Oblique fracture: The breakage in the bone goes diagonally across the bone.
- Segmental Fracture: When the same bone is fractured twice, a “floating” section of bone remains between the two breaks.
- Comminuted fracture: In this type, the bone shatters into three or more pieces.
- Avulsion fracture: In this type of fracture a fragment is pulled off the bone by a tendon or ligament.
Causes of fractures include:
- Fractures can occur as a result of a fall, a car accident, or a tackle during a football game.
- This condition weakens bones, making them more prone to breaking.
- Repetitive action can fatigue muscles and increase bone stress.
- Stress fractures might happen as a result of this. Stress fractures are common among athletes.
Most fractures are extremely painful, and you may be unable to move the affected area. Other common signs are:
- Tenderness and swelling around the injury
- A limb may appear to be out of place, or a portion of the bone may puncture the skin.
The circumstances that lead to a person’s fracture will be investigated by a doctor. They will also conduct a physical examination in order to make a diagnosis. To completely assess the fracture, they might request an X-ray and, in some situations, an MRI or CT scan.