A wrist Buckle fracture, also called Taurus fractures, are a specific type of wrist fracture that occurs only in childhood with some symptoms. Buckle fractures are the most common wrist fracture in children. Wrist fractures account for 30 percent of all fractures that occur in children, reports the American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons.
- 0.1 Wrist anatomy
- 0.2 Children’s bones
- 0.3 Buckle fracture
- 0.4 Similar fractures
- 0.5 How do doctors treat a wrist buckle fracture?
- 0.6 Important tips
- 0.7 Who is at risk for buckle fractures?
- 0.8 Wrist Buckle fracture symptoms
- 0.9 Complications
- 0.10 Recovery
- 1 Splints
- 2 Home care for buckle fracture in the wrist
The wrist is made up of two long bones and the ulna. The radius is under the thumb and the ulna is the outside of the arm. Eight small carpal bones move across the radius and ulna allowing the wrist to bend back and forth and to the side. Turning the hand rotates the radius around the ulna near the elbow. Medical professionals refer to the palm side of the wrist as the volar surface. The upper side of the wrist is called the dorsal surface.
Long bones in the forearm develop from the growth plates located near the end. Growth plates are regions of uncalcified cartilage where bone-producing and supporting cells divide rapidly. The growth plate appears as a free zone that extends through the bone on x-rays. Bones grow in length and width of the growth plates, which is not as strong as normal bone.
Buckle fractures typically occur when a child falls and lands on an outstretched hand. Children with this injury commonly complain of wrist pain and refuse to use their arm. The child may identify an area of the wrist as the most painful. The affected arm obviously typically does not deform.
With a Taurus fracture, the bones in the forearm compress creating a “buckle” or slam on the dorsal surface of the bones, which can be seen on x-rays. The opposite side of the bone will appear normal.
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Several other types of wrist fractures can happen in children. Green stick fractures cause the bone to bend on the opposite side. A Galeazzi fracture of the radius has both sides of the bone broken and the ulna can be displaced. Both bone fractures may have displaced, or misaligned, fracture ends. Growth plate fractures, which are also called physeal or Salter’s fractures, pass through part of the growth plate of the forearm.
How do doctors treat a wrist buckle fracture?
With a wrist buckle fracture, the arm can be put in a cast for 3-6 weeks. However, some doctors prefer the splint wrist. For babies, the usual healing time for a bone is 3-6 weeks, but it can take longer depending on the age of the baby, and they will have to wear their cast all the time. For adults, this can take longer. No difference in the healing of the buckle wrist fractures was visualized between casts and splints. How children’s bones grow could be seen perfectly. Within about a year of a buckle fracture, there is typically no sign of the previous injury in the bones of the forearm.
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Buckle fractures are compression fractures and are very common in children. They happen when one side of the bone bends, or bends, but does not break completely. It is a stable fracture, which means that the bone fragments have not separated from each other. They are sometimes called torus fractures and are an example of an incomplete fracture. Another example of an incomplete fracture is a greenstick fracture, or when the bone bends and breaks, but does not break completely. Greenstick’s fractures are also more common in children than adults. It can take up to 6 weeks for a child to heal from a buckle fracture and longer for an adult.
Some doctors believe that minor wrist fractures of this type can be effectively treated with splints. Since children are among the most common victims of buckle fractures, critics of the splint alternative point out that children can easily remove a splint, thus delaying recovery. Some orthopedists believe that a cast also helps reduce pain faster than a splint.
Treatment of a wrist buckle fracture begins by addressing the patient’s pain using analgesics, sedatives, or other medications. Diagnosis usually involves an x-ray of the injured area which should reveal an incomplete fracture in which one side of the bone has been compressed or ‘bent’. A wrist buckle fracture should not be confused with a green stick fracture, in which one side of the bone has completely broken while the other side has folded. This condition is more common in children whose bones are more flexible.
A soft cast is usually chosen in the treatment of a wrist buckle fracture and stays in place for three weeks or more depending on how quickly the bone heals. During the summer months, a waterproof plaster can be used, which allows the patient to shower, bathe or swim. Your doctor will often prescribe pain medication to be taken as needed. Your doctor may order follow-up x-rays to monitor the progress of the healing bone. Although uncommon in children, physical therapy can be prescribed in the later stages of recovery.
Before discharge, the patient is usually advised to rest the lesion as much as possible, and ibuprofen, acetaminophen, or acetaminophen with codeine elixir are often prescribed to manage pain. The patient is advised to contact their doctor if they experience numbness; cold, pale or blue extremities; or tingling. The toes and fingers should remain pink and feel warm to the touch. If these wrist buckle fracture symptoms occur, the patient is advised to raise the injured part above the level of the heart using a pillow or pillow. If a wrist buckle fracture symptoms persist after half an hour of elevation, the patient is usually asked to go to the doctor’s office for further evaluation.
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Other advice given to patients with a wrist buckle fracture in the wrist includes keeping the cast dry unless waterproof, avoiding placing objects under the cast, and avoiding walking on an injured leg until doctor approves. Doctors often recommend using a hair dryer placed on a cool setting to relieve itching. After the plaster is removed, the patient may experience joint pain for which exercise or physical therapy is usually recommended.
Who is at risk for buckle fractures?
These injuries are very common in children and tend to occur in the arm or leg. Children are more at risk of arch fractures than adults because their “long bones” or arms and legs contain growth plates. These are softer areas of cartilage that harden into solid bone as the child grows. Because babies’ bones are quite flexible, they tend to bend rather than break when put under pressure. Practicing sports, rough games and other typical childhood activities, such as running and climbing trees, are all risk factors for fracture of the buckle. Adults can also suffer from a buckle fracture, although it’s not as common. Those at risk include people who have a condition called osteoporosis, which means they have weak bones, and those who take part in contact or extreme sports.
Wrist Buckle fracture symptoms
If a person has broken a bone, he will feel a lot of pain, and there will be swelling, bruising, or tenderness at the site of the break.
If the interruption is in an arm or leg, the limb may appear deformed, but with a fracture of the buckle, there is often no irregularity.
Also, if someone suspects a break, he should keep the limb still, possibly using a splint, and lift it higher than the heart to reduce swelling.
Pain relief may also be needed. Avoid heating the area. As with all types of interruptions, it is essential to get treatment as quickly as possible, especially in the case of children. Their bones heal quickly, and it is important to ensure that the bone is supported to do so correctly. At the hospital, a doctor will offer a physical exam and possibly an X-ray to diagnose a buckle fracture.
At some point during your recovery, you will need to have a follow-up appointment with your doctor. They can take another X-ray to see how the bone is healing. If the bone does not heal properly, surgery may be scheduled to fix the bone and put it back in the cast or splint.
You should also see your doctor if your pain gets worse. If a cast gets very wet or becomes cracked or damaged, you should also see your doctor. A new cast can be done to replace the damaged one.
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People who have a simple wrist buckle fracture will usually not be kept in the hospital.
For the first few days, there may be swelling, discomfort, or pain. To reduce this, lift the injured limb and place it on a pillow. In the case of a fractured arm, the person may wear a sling when standing or walking.
If they have a broken leg, they will need complete rest, with the leg raised, for the first few days after the break. After that, they will need crutches to move and will have to be careful not to disturb the bone while it is healing.
While the bone is healing, people will have to take some time off from school or work and rest from their usual activities. The exact length of this rest will depend on the severity and location of the fracture. People should speak to their health team if they are unsure.
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Home care for buckle fracture in the wrist
If your child has a wrist buckle fracture, you can help them get through the healing and treatment phase. Follow the doctor’s advice and remind your child that the more important it is to protect their injury, the sooner they can be active and start playing again.
- In the first two days after a fracture, it is important to keep the arm or leg elevated.
- You should also freeze the injured area every hour or two in the first couple of days. Ice can be placed on top of the cue or cast, but you want to avoid getting the cast or cue wet. Cover the cast or splint in plastic before applying ice to reduce the spread of moisture.
- Avoid putting anything, including creams or products, inside the cast or splint to treat the itch.
- Call your doctor’s office if you have any questions about treatment. A nurse may be able to answer your question quickly.
Fractures of the wrist and forearm account for nearly half of all bone fractures in children. Most of these are buckle fractures.
It is an extremely common occurrence, and the vast majority of buckle fractures are treated quickly and easily with a cast or splint. Children who have sustained a buckle fracture do not tend to develop related problems later on.
While adult bones take longer to heal from a fracture, most people make a full recovery.