When you fracture a bone, your body responds with pain to make you aware of the injury. A fracture may also cause injury to the area surrounding the bone including muscles, tendons, cartilage, nerves, ligaments, and blood vessels which result in inflammation, discoloration, and bruising.Here is everything you need to know about the bone fracture healing process.
The Healing Process: Bone Fracture Types:
- Simple Fracture (Aligned Bone Break With No Tissue Damage)
- Complex Fracture (Displaced Bone Break That Requires Intense Rehab)
- Comminuted Fracture (Fragmented Bone Fracture Often Due To A Trauma)
- Compound Fracture (Broken Bone Through The Skin With Risk Of Infection)
Bone Fracture Repair Stages
- Inflammatory Stage (Occurs soon after injury as blood vessels erupt – week 1)
- Repairing Stage (spongy bone grows – week 2 to 4)
- Bone Remodeling Stage (spongy bone solidifies – week 4 to 8)
Pain Fracture Stages
People who experience bone fractures feel different levels of pain from the onset of the break and throughout the healing process. While some people only experience the immediate acute pain, others have long-term pain which generally requires the intervention of pain management specialists like Dr. Achampong and the PT therapists at the Maryland Pain And Wellness Center.
- Acute pain is present when a bone fracture occurs.
- Sub-acute pain occurs during the healing process.
- Chronic pain happens after the fracture has healed.
Bone Fracture Treatment
For a bone fracture to heal properly, a patient will receive a splint, brace, or cast depending on location in the body. In more serious situations, surgery is required. A medical professional uses these techniques to restrain the bone long enough to allow the fracture to heal. In addition, patients are required to rest so that the bone does not move to decrease healing time. After receiving follow-up instructions after a bone set, you must not aggravate the fracture or it will worsen the injury. Understand what movements to avoid and modify your daily activities.
As fractures can take from six weeks to a few months to heal, the pain will become problematic while the muscles and tissue around the bone weaken because of immobility. Most especially if inflammation is present, a patient will experience pain that requires medical intervention that includes pain medication or physical therapy that augments bone fracture exercise and function. Although pain may still be present after two or three months, your movements will become more relaxed and natural which will allow you to function and return to your normal daily activities.
There are several risks associated with a bone fracture. If a person fails to seek proper medical care, the bone will not correctly heal in the precise anatomic position. Depending on the location of the fracture, there are other complications that have serious medical consequences including infection, blood clots, muscle or tissue damage, internal joint bleeding, or fatal fat embolism.
If you still experience pain after healing, contact us to re-evaluate your injury for signs of underlying causes as it is a natural response when there is nerve, tissue, or scar damage present.