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A wrist fracture is a break in the bones of the wrist and is commonly referred to as a "Colles’ fracture." Patients with wrist fractures typically have severe pain, swelling, and deformity of the injured wrist. Fractures of the wrist are among the most common injuries and account for up to one-sixth of all fractures seen in emergency rooms.
The most common age groups to have wrist fractures are children aged six to ten years and women in their seventh decade of life. To determine if you have a wrist fracture your doctor at KSF Houston will review your symptoms and examine your wrist. He or she will then take x-rays to confirm that the wrist is broken. Some fractures are inherently stable and some are not. Some extend into the joint. Some have exposed bone poking through the skin, while others have nerve, vessel, or tendon involvement.
Wrist fracture treatments including:
- Manipulation with casting
- Manipulation with placement of pins
- Manipulation with placement of an external fixator
- Plating of the bone with screws.
Generally, you can start to return to normal activities after six weeks with rehabilitation following cast application or surgery. Severe fractures may require prolonged therapy and rehabilitation.
Wrist fractures are typically not expected and thus prevention is very difficult. Safeguards such as wrist guards are useful when performing high-risk activities. A healthy diet that includes calcium, vitamin D, and a multivitamin is essential for healthy bones.
The radius is the larger of the two bones of the forearm. The end toward the wrist is called the distal end. A fracture of the distal radius occurs when the area of the radius near the wrist breaks.