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First Aid | Treatment of a Broken Bone

First Aid after a fall

Kids are active creatures; daring, curious, creative, innovative, but don’t always have the best judgment in the ‘heat of the moment’…..The result is often a broken bone. Most fractures in kids are treated with relatively simple care such as a cast; others may need more advanced care or surgery. Kids fractures.com is designed to provide you all of the information that you need to insure that your child receives optimal care and a complete recovery.

If your child has a crooked appearing arm or leg and is screaming in pain, this is not the place for you to be! Most fractures are obvious to a parent and an Emergency Department should be your next stop!  However, if you find yourself in this situation in the future, here’s what we would suggest:

  • Look at the arm or leg carefully
  • Does it appear crooked?
  • Are there any cuts in the skin?
  • Are the fingers or toes pink, warm, and “blush” when you touch them?
  • Can the child feel their fingers or toes?
  • How did the fracture happen?
  • Was the child knocked out?  (loss of consciousness)
  • How far did they fall?
  • How fast were they going?

Splinting the fracture…

No matter how crooked the arm or leg looks, it will be more comfortable for the ride to the hospital if you make a splint for it.  Broken bones are painful, and any bumps or movement tends to be very painful.  This pain is lessened when you apply a splint to the arm or leg. Splints can be made from all sorts of things. For a broken arm, something as simple as a magazine or folded piece of cardboard and duct tape will be enough to make the arm comfortable. This improves the safety of taking the child to the hospital.

If you have to travel a long distance, it is sometimes better to gently straighten the alignment of the arm or leg before putting it in the splint.  This always seems like a scary prospect, but will result in better comfort during your trip to the hospital.  There is very little that you can do in this situation that will harm the arm, so don’t be afraid to gently move the arm.

If there is an cut or visible bleeding over where the bone is broken, this is an emergency!  When a broken bone cuts through the skin, the bone can be contaminated with all sorts of bugs that you don’t want.  Open fractures always need surgery to clean the bone and make sure that it does not become infected.

DO NOT EAT ON THE WAY TO THE HOSPITAL!  If your child needs surgery to fix their fracture, it is safest if they have an empty stomach before needing sedation or a general anesthetic to fix the broken bone.

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