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All about Hand Fractures – Info from a Gilbert AZ Hand Surgeon

Anatomy of the Hand

 

A number of bones join together to make up the human hand. These bones also form and act as the appendage’s supporting framework which attaches the muscles together at the wrists and shoulder and enables the fingers and arm to move.

A considerable amount of pressure directly to a bone is needed to break it, i.e. a hand fracture hand wrist carpal tunnel pain photooccurs due to direct force to the hand. What usually comes next, is pain, swelling, and a decrease in usage of the injured hand.

Kinds of Hand Fractures

While some fractures may be considered as simple, with bone pieces being perfectly aligned and stable, there are other kinds of fractures that are just the opposite, where bone fragments tend to shift or lose their place. There are also some fractures that happen in the main body of the bone, while there are others that only break the surface of the joint.

Comminuted Fractures: These are fractures where the bone is broken into many pieces and is often highly unstable.

Open Fracture: Also known as the compound fracture, it usually happens when a bone fragment tears through the skin. There is a level of risk associated with this type of fracture.

Signs and Symptoms of a Hand Fracture

If you have a hand fracture, you will experience;

  • Pain
  • Stiffness
  • Loss of movement

To help determine the exact plan of action to take in the case of a hand fracture, your orthopedic hand surgeon in Gilbert or Chandler will first undertake a medical evaluation and x-rays. A number of treatment options will be made available to you, depending on what type of fracture you are suffering from.

Treatment Options for Hand Fractures

In order to treat a fracture that isn’t displaced, a splint or cast is usually recommended. Your orthopedic hand specialist may also prescribe one to protect a fracture that has been set.

There are some fractures that need to be held in place with the help of wires or pins. This is known as a closed reduction and internal fixation, because no incision is made to carry out the procedure. On the other hand, some fractures require surgery known as open reduction.

Articular fractures or those that disrupt the joint surface require a precise setting of bone fragments to smoothly restore the joint.

In some cases, a bone graft might be necessary, especially when the bone is severely broken. In this procedure, your orthopedic surgeon will take bone fragments from another part of the body or from a cadaver and attach it to the area to be repaired, which provides stability to it. Depending on the case, substitutes for bone graft are also used at times, instead of taking it from the body part of the patient.

Once the fracture has been set and gains enough stability, your orthopedic surgeon will lead you through a range of motion exercises aimed at reducing stiffness and improving mobility with physical therapy.    

The top hand specialists in Gilbert, Chandler, Mesa and Queen Creek are at OSPI. All types of nonoperative and operative treatment are offered at Orthopedic and Sports Performance Institute for hand injuries. Most insurance is accepted. Call OSPI today at (480) 899-4333!

The Latest Advancements in Knee Replacement for Active Boomers

The majority of patients coming in for knee replacement surgery are in their 50s, according to Steven Haas who is heading the Knee Surgery and Attending Orthopedic Surgeon Department at the Hospital for Special Surgery based in New York City. If these statistics are compared with those of 20 years ago, there has been a rapid shift in demand for knee replacement surgery, especially for people in their 50s.

Why the sudden interest and growth of demand for the surgical procedure? The points responsible for this are new and innovative technologies that are being used now, especially in implant design and far more improved surgical techniques that are being used by orthopedic surgeons to meet with the growing demand for knee replacements. In addition, the growing number of baby boomers reaching older age has increased the numbers in need of the procedure.

The Latest in Knee Replacement Surgery

Only recently, the orthopedic community announced the arrival of the newest advancement for the surgery, i.e. a knee replacement implant that can last the patient as much as 30 years instead of the standard 10-15. Moreover, the implant has also been cleared by the FDA which means that those looking for ways to make their implants last longer, can opt for this.

VERILAST technology is used for making the implant that will make it possible for patients to possibly outgrow the implant, rather than the other way round. In addition to this, the implants are thought to be much more functional than the earlier versions, as is proved by a series of tests that researchers underwent before giving that verdict.

Adoption of Better Surgical Procedures and Techniques

Orthopedic surgeons have also changed their way of performing surgical procedures, by introducing techniques such as minimally invasive surgery, which helps in decreasing trauma to the patient, as much as possible, which in turn leads to a faster recovery.

Another development is the usage of small surgical instruments for performing the procedure, where the goal is to cut as little as possible, which will minimize the collateral damage and trauma that came with previous surgical procedures that were extremely invasive in nature.

Better Recovery Rate Due To Minimal Invasive Surgical Procedures

The entire point of such a surgery is not to make the cut big enough to fit the instruments, but rather, to use smaller instruments during the procedure that would best fit the cut made. This is the reason why, smaller incisions are used to get access to the knee area after providing local anesthetic to the patient.

One point in favor of the minimal invasive procedure is that, no need is felt to cut the quadriceps tendon or flip the kneecap upside down in order to gain access to the area, which was required in the case of previous surgical techniques. This has also improved the recovery rate far more significantly and at a much faster rate, than old surgical techniques, so now patients are up and about after only 6 weeks of having the procedure done as compared to 3 months.

OSPI offers expert knee replacement doctors in Gilbert, Chandler and Mesa AZ who specialize in the latest technologies including computer navigation, minimally invasive and even outpatient procedures. Call OSPI today to receive treatment with the top orthopedic doctors in the entire East Valley!

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