Fractures & Dislocations
Nobody plans to break or dislocate their bones, but when it happens, make sure you receive the best, most appropriate medical care.
In the event of a bone break or joint dislocation, it is important to seek emergency medical care by calling 911 or visiting the emergency room or urgent care center nearest you.
After being treated by emergency care physicians, you’ll want to consult the orthopedic surgeons at the Joint Replacement Institute in Naples, Florida, to explore the best follow-up treatment and care for your unique situation.
Broken bones – called fractures in the medical community – can occur from direct impact or trauma, overuse, and diseases that weaken bones such as osteoporosis. Fractures can occur in any bone in the body. Some of the most common bone breaks or cracks occur in the collar bone (clavicle), forearm, wrist, hip, and leg.
Most often you will know immediately if you have suffered a fracture because you will experience sudden, severe pain, followed by immediate swelling of the area. It will be tender to the touch with visible bruising or discoloration. You may or may not be able to move the fractured area. On rare occasions, depending on the extent of the fracture and its location, you may not even be aware you broke a bone!
Factors that increase your risk of bone fracture include smoking, prolonged use of steroid medication, osteoporosis, arthritis, diabetes, and previous fractures.
A joint dislocation – also called luxation – occurs primarily from a sudden blow, which can force the bones within a joint to abnormally separate. Car accidents and sports injuries are common causes of joint dislocations.
While dislocations can occur in any joint throughout the body, the shoulder, knee, elbow, hip, and fingers are most often dislocated. The shoulder, in particular, is subject to repeat dislocations.
You will know if your joint is dislocated because it will be noticeably deformed, and you will be unable to use it. A joint dislocation causes sudden and severe pain.
Athletes are more prone to joint dislocations. Other factors that increase your risk of dislocations are congenital defects and balance or other issues that make you more likely to fall.
Treating Bone Fractures and Dislocations
Seeing a doctor about a broken bone or joint dislocation is absolutely necessary in order to:
- Accurately diagnose the issue. Sometimes, a fracture may occur alongside a dislocated joint. A doctor can properly identify exactly what is going on using diagnostic imaging such as an X-ray or MRI. This ensures that you are properly treating everything that requires treatment.
- Address complications (dislocations). Even after emergency care for a joint dislocation, you’ll want to be sure nearby ligaments and nerves weren’t damaged during the dislocation.
- Prevent complications (breaks). Even if you believe no immediate treatment is necessary (say, with a broken toe), seeing a doctor is crucial to determine the nature of the break so that you can avoid further problems down the road, such as arthritis, chronic pain, and deformity. In the case of a broken toe, there are ways to keep it in place, which is required for proper healing.
Depending on the type and location of your fracture, your surgery options may include the use of surgical pins, screws, or other fasteners to reset and secure the bones for optimal healing. Casts, bracing, or other devices can immobilize and protect the area while it heals. Physical therapy may also help you regain mobility after the bone has healed.
For joint dislocations, emergency care will include putting the joint back in place. This is likely to be followed by a few weeks of self-care, including immobilization. In some cases, physical therapy or other treatments may be called for, to strengthen the area and ensure stability of the joint to prevent future dislocations.
Orthopedic Doctors in Naples, FL
Just as every patient is different, every bone break or joint dislocation is unique. See the orthopedic experts at the Joint Replacement Institute for the best fracture and dislocation care in Naples, Florida. Our providers will recommend the optimal long-term treatment approach for you. Call (239) 261-2663 today or request an appointment now.