Elbow fractures are particularly common for kids with developing bones. If your child suffers this kind of injury, it is important to see an orthopedist for treatment as soon as possible to ensure that the bones heal completely. Here is what you need to know if your child has been diagnosed with an elbow fracture.

Why are elbow fractures so common in kids?

Elbow fractures account for about 10% of childhood fractures. Kids’ bones are not as strong as those of adults, so they are more prone to all kinds of fractures. Elbow fractures are common because kids tend to play enthusiastically and engage in activities that put them at greater risk of a fracture, such as climbing monkey bars, doing gymnastics, riding skateboards or bikes, and playing spots. Any fall directly on the elbow or an outstretched arm or any direct impact to the elbow can lead to a fracture. Kids can reduce the risk of these kinds of fractures and other sports injuries by wearing the appropriate protective padding for the activity they are doing.

What are the symptoms?

In some cases, it is clear that a fracture has occurred because you can see the misshapen bone. In other cases, you may not know that your child has a fracture until you see swelling and bruising and until he or she complains of a limited range of motion. Numbness in the hand is a sign of an elbow fracture that has also affected one of the nerves that run through the arm. If your child experiences these symptoms, you should make an appointment with an orthopedic specialist.

How are elbow fractures treated?

In most cases, elbow fractures in kids can heal without surgery with the help of a cast or splint. After three to six weeks of immobilization, the orthopedist will check to see if the bones have healed and then may recommend physical therapy to re-strengthen the arm. For severe fractures, surgery may be necessary.

Don’t let an elbow fracture keep your active child stuck inside. At Able Orthopedic & Sports Medicine, we provide noninvasive and surgical solutions for orthopedic injuries in Queens. Schedule a consultation by calling (347) 537-2404.

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