What to Do If Your Child Has a Fracture
With the number of pediatric orthopedists trained to deal with the special bone, joint and tendon problems of children decreasing, more hospitals rely on general orthopedists to evaluate and treat pediatric injuries, such as fractures. Parents need to be aware of how to get the right treatment for their child’s injury in order to have the best outcome in the long run. Pediatric Orthopedic Surgeons Daniel Green, MD, David Scher, MD, and Roger Widmann, MD, provide the following tips on what you should do if your child has a fracture.
- Comfort: The first step is to try and keep the child as comfortable as possible until you can see a doctor. If you suspect the child has a fracture, you should seek out immediate medical attention.
- Ice and Elevation: Putting ice on the extremity and elevating it above the heart can make a difference in the degree of swelling. Icing can also affect a pediatric orthopedic surgeon’s ability to operate (if need be) and can help avoid problems with wound healing.
- Splinting: Getting some type of rigid splint on an injured extremity is often the most effective way to initially control a child’s pain. Until the child is seen by a medical professional, a makeshift splint with materials such as cardboard may be helpful. Just be careful that nothing is wrapped tightly around the limb. Anything used to secure the splint should be wrapped as loosely as possible.
- Stay Calm: Remaining calm for your child’s sake is essential. If you remain level-headed, it will reassure your child.
If you suspect your child has a fracture, you should seek out medical attention at a facility that has specialized pediatric care. Pediatric orthopedic surgeons have been specially trained in the most effective techniques to treat your child and are the best qualified medical professionals to manage pediatric fractures.