A fracture is a break in any bone in the body. Fractures are usually caused by trauma, such as falls, twists, blows, or collisions. There are different kinds of fracture:
Fractures may also be described as:
The Bones of the Body
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Fractures are caused by trauma to the bone. Trauma includes:
Trauma is a physical force applied to the bone that the bone cannot withstand. Stronger bones can withstand more physical force than weaker bones.
A risk factor is something that increases your chance of getting a disease or condition. Risk factors for a fracture include:
Symptoms of a fracture include:
The doctor will ask about your symptoms and how you injured yourself. The doctor will examine the injured area.
Tests may include:
Devices that can hold a bone in place while it heals include:
Healing time ranges from three weeks for a simple finger fracture to many months for a complicated fracture of a long bone. All fractures require rehabilitation exercises to regain muscle strength and joint motion.
If you are diagnosed with a fracture, follow your doctor's instructions .
You can reduce your chances of getting a fracture:
American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons
American Orthopaedic Society for Sports Medicine
Canadian Orthopaedic Association
Canadian Orthopaedic Foundation
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Last reviewed September 2012 by John C. Keel, MD
Please be aware that this information is provided to supplement the care provided by your physician. It is neither intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. CALL YOUR HEALTHCARE PROVIDER IMMEDIATELY IF YOU THINK YOU MAY HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider prior to starting any new treatment or with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition.
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