Fracture Repair Surgery - Plates and Screws, IM Rod, External Fixator
A bone fracture is a medical condition in which a bone is cracked or broken. It is a break in the continuity of the bone. While many fractures are the result of high force impact or stress, bone fracture can also occur as a result of certain medical conditions that weaken the bones, such as osteoporosis.
The word “Fracture” implies to broken bone. A bone may get fractured completely or partially and it is caused commonly from trauma due to fall, motor vehicle accident or sports. Thinning of the bone due to osteoporosis in the elderly can cause the bone to break easily. Overuse injuries are common cause of stress fractures in athletes.
Our body reacts to a fracture by protecting the injured area with a blood clot and callus or fibrous tissue. Bone cells begin forming on the either side of the fracture line. These cells grow towards each other and thus close the fracture.
The objective of early fracture management is to control bleeding, prevent ischemic injury (bone death) and to remove sources of infection such as foreign bodies and dead tissues. The next step in fracture management is the reduction of the fracture and its maintenance. It is important to ensure that the involved part of the body returns to its function after fracture heals.
- Open Reduction and Internal Fixation (ORIF)
This is a surgical procedure in which the fracture is re-aligned and stabilized with internal fixation. Internal fixation is done with devices such as Kirschner wires, plates and screws, and intramedullary nails. This can be accomplished with open surgical techniques (open incision) or percutaneous (minimally invasive) techniques.
- External fixation
External fixation is a procedure in which the fracture stabilization is done at a distance from the site of fracture. It helps to maintain bone length and alignment.
Fractures may take several weeks to months to heal completely. You should limit your activities even after the removal of cast or brace so that the bone become solid enough to bear the stress. Rehabilitation program involves exercises and gradual increase in activity levels until the process of healing is complete.