Treatment Options for Fractures

Thomas F. Saylor, MD, sees a lot of broken bones at Orthopaedic Care Specialists in North Palm Beach, Florida. In fact, these injuries are some of the most common problems seen by orthopedic surgeons.

However, even though they’re common, that doesn’t mean they always require the same treatment. In this blog, Dr. Saylor discusses some of the options he may use to treat your fracture.

Options to fix a fracture

Dr. Saylor considers several things when determining the best approach for care, including:

Based on this information, Dr. Saylor could suggest several options to treat your fracture, including the following:

Immobilization

One of the most common therapies for broken bones involves stabilizing and immobilizing the break. Among the options that can be used to immobilize a break are the following:

Before immobilizing your break, Dr. Saylor will realign the fracture to ensure it heals properly.

Resetting the bone

Sometimes, a broken bone requires a specific intervention to bring the pieces into better alignment. Dr. Saylor can perform this procedure — known as fracture reduction or reducing a fracture — surgically or nonsurgically. 

If you need a fracture reduction, you receive a local or general anesthetic to keep you comfortable throughout the entire process. Afterward, you often need a splinter cast to hold the newly aligned bones in place while they heal.

Traction

Traction is a less common form of fracture treatment these days, but it may be used in some situations. The process involves a system of pulleys, weights, strings, and pins. When activated, it gently stretches tendons and muscles and keeps them taut to keep the broken bones in proper alignment.

Internal or external fixation

If your broken bones need more stabilization than a cast or brace alone can provide, Dr. Saylor could place support structures, such as pins, screws, or metal plates. These methods can either be completely internal or involve external fixation, and they often involve surgery. 

If you have pins with external fixation, they’ll attach to a frame outside of your body for more stabilization. Dr. Saylor could recommend external fixation if you have significant swelling or an open fracture with exposed bone.

A note about surgery

If any of the options above require surgery, rest easy that Dr. Saylor uses minimally invasive approaches whenever possible. 

Minimally invasive surgical techniques allow Dr. Saylor to perform even complex procedures with a few small incisions. Instead of making one large incision to access your broken bone, he can insert a tiny lighted camera along with specialized instruments. This allows him to see inside your body and repair any damage in a far less invasive way.

Minimally invasive surgery offers numerous advantages for fracture care, including:

Dr. Saylor can also use minimally invasive surgery to fix broken bones in other parts of your body, such as your hand, wrist, elbow, or shoulder.

If you have a fracture, learn about your treatment options by booking an appointment online or over the phone with Orthopaedic Care Specialists today.

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