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Greenstick fracture in children

Greenstick fracture in children



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Imagine one of those reeds that grow on the banks of rivers. Surely, as a child, you yourself have played to bend the stem of one of those reeds. Because it is difficult to break it, but very easy to deform it? If it breaks, it does so only on one side: the other remains intact. Well, something like this is what happens to young children when they suffer a green stem fracture. Hence its name.

What is greenstick fracture?

It is a type of incomplete fracture that usually affects the middle part of the long bones in children. We doctors call this central portion "diaphysis." The bones most affected by this type of fracture are those of the forearm; that is, the radius and the ulna.

Causes of greenstick fracture in children

The periosteum is a membrane that covers the bones. In greenstick fracture, this membrane is broken, as well as one of the sides of the cortex (the cortex is "the hard part" of the bone). The side of the cortex that tends to fracture is the convex part, while the concave part is bulging.

Symptoms of this fracture in childhood

The most common symptom is pain. In addition to this, functional impotence will appear; that is, the difficulty of movements. In turn, the affected area becomes swollen and sometimes deformed.

Diagnosis of greenstick fracture

The diagnosis will be established by clinical and exploratory findings, and will be complemented with an x-ray.

What is the treatment to follow in children

Treatment includes:

- Pain management, with oral ibuprofen / paracetamol.

- Relative rest for 1-2 weeks.

- Immobilization with a cast or splint for 1-2 weeks.

- If the fracture is highly displaced, surgery is required to properly align the bone.

Differences between cast and splint

A cast is a plaster device that fully embraces and covers the affected limb. A splint is a special bandage that has a plaster reinforcement on 50% of the circumference of the limb.

You can read more articles similar to Greenstick fracture in children, in the category of Orthopedics and on-site traumatology.


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