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Repair for Fracture of Radius or Ulna

Repair for Fracture of Radius or Ulna

What is a Radius Fracture?

 Fractures to the lower arm occur when there is a break in either or both of the bones that make up the forearm. These bones are known as the ulna and the radius, and they are essential in providing motion to the wrist and elbow joints. They also serve as essential attachment points for the muscles in the upper arm. As a result, it is necessary to repair a fracture of the radius or ulna as soon as possible to avoid future complications.

Seek Medical Attention

Forearm fractures commonly occur as the result of falling and landing on one's hands or direct impact on the forearm caused by vehicle accidents, altercations, and sports. They typically cause pain as a primary symptom. Other signs of a fracture include swelling, bruising, or deformity of the arm. Moderate to severe breaks may also limit the patient's ability to move the affected area or a nearby joint. Most forearm fractures are either ulna fractures or fractures of both the ulna and radius. Fractures that only affect the radius are rare. If a broken arm is suspected, it is essential to seek medical attention as soon as possible. Through X-rays and physical examination, doctors can diagnose the location and severity of a broken arm and administer the proper treatment.

Treatment Options and Recovery

The treatment for repairing a fracture of the radius or ulna varies depending upon the location of the break and how severe the fracture is. A fractured ulna can usually set and healed using a brace or cast. The area must be immobilized to allow the bone to recover adequately. Severe fractures may require surgical stabilization using screws and a metal plate. When both bones are fractured, they usually need to be held together with plates and screws on both the radius and ulna. Rods may also be inserted to stabilize the bone. In the rare event of an isolated radius fracture, surgery is also typically required to realign the bones and hold them in position.

Healing and Physical Therapy

When properly treated, most fractures of the ulna and radius heal without problems. In some cases, however, there is a possibility of rare complications including decreased motion, poor healing, persistent pain caused by hardware, and infection. Complications can occur, and additional surgical procedures may be required to alleviate symptoms. Some patients may also need physical therapy to regain strength and range of motion after the injury heals.