By| Published: August 9th, 2017
A broken bone is medically termed as a fracture. The most common reason of fracture is trauma and the first indication is immobilization with pain at the site of injury. However, depending on the severity of trauma, an individual can become unresponsive and hence, one should look for heavy bleeding, deformation of limbs or joints, discoloration of toes, or if the bone has pierced the skin.
As first aid, before you get medical help, if there is bleeding it should be stopped by applying pressure using a clean cloth, don’t try to move the injured area, and apply ice pack if available.
Now since we know the basics, let us understand the difference between the treatment options that are employed for treating a fracture.
- Use of a cast/splint: Here plaster casts or plastic functional braces are used to hold the bones in position until it is healed
- Traction: In this treatment, bone fractures are realigned and stabilized. Sometimes it is also used to reduce the pain of a fracture before surgery. Traction involves the use to weights and pulleys that put tension on the bone or joint and this helps the bone to regain its position and keep it still
- Surgery: This option is considered when the bone does not heal using a cast. The invasive treatment done using metal screws, pins, rods, and plates is called as open reduction and internal fixation surgery
To conclude, with the above treatment options, a fractured bone takes 2-8 weeks to heal. This also depends on the region that is affected and if it is accompanied by other medical complications like an infection or issues with blood supply. Most importantly, the treatment option is decided by the healthcare provider, this write-up is only to help understand the difference between them and create awareness among the common people.