What is a Distal Radius Fracture?
A distal radius fracture is when the radius (the larger bone in the forearm) is broken at the end of the bone by the wrist joint!
Most distal radius fractures, also known as wrist fractures, are caused by a fall onto an outstretched hand. As you extend your wrist to prevent your fall, when you land a large force is placed on the wrist causing it to break. Most wrist fractures occur with a slip and fall while trying to protect themselves.
These fractures can usually be treated conservatively with just a cast. Conservative (non-operative) treatment will usually consist of a cast and/or wrist brace for 4-6 weeks, depending on the break. With more severe breaks, a closed reduction may be attempted. A closed reduction is where a doctor will attempt to put the break back into normal alignment. Once adequate alignment is obtained, a cast will be applied to hold the bone into its restored position. If the fracture is too severe and the alignment cannot be held appropriately, surgery can be discussed.
After conservative management or surgical management, a course of physical therapy is usually recommended. In physical therapy, exercises to regain motion and grip strength may be used to help you get your hand function back as quickly as possible. We tell all patients that the wrist may swell and be painful for up to 6-12 months after the initial break.
Our Comprehensive Hand Specialist and Occupational Therapy Team can help! Dr. Kyle Bohm and Dr. Anna Babushkina promise prompt appointment scheduling and excellent care. Each physician works closely with our Certified Occupational Therapists, allowing their patients to receive complete hand care.
Trust your hand fracture with the experienced team at Mendelson Kornblum! Schedule your appointment now using our easy online scheduling!