In case of suspected fracture, which is when the bone breaks causing pain, inability to move, swelling and sometimes deformity, it is very important to remain calm, observe if there are other more serious injuries, such as bleeding, and call the mobile emergency service (SAMU 192).
It is then possible to perform first aid to the victim, which must follow the following steps:
- Keep the affected limb at restin a natural and comfortable position;
- Immobilize the joints above and below the injury, with the use of splints, as shown in the images. If splints are not available, it is possible to improvise with pieces of cardboard, folded magazines or newspapers or pieces of wood, which must be padded with clean cloths and tied around the joint;
- Never try to straighten a fracture or put the bone in place;
- In case of an open fracture, the wound should be covered, preferably with sterile gauze or a clean cloth. If there is very heavy bleeding, it is necessary to apply compression above the fractured area to try to stop the blood from flowing out. Learn more details about first aid in case of an open fracture;
- Wait for medical help. If this is not possible, it is recommended to take the victim to the nearest emergency room.
Fracture occurs when the bone breaks due to some impact greater than the bone can withstand. With aging and with certain bone diseases, such as osteoporosis, the risk of fractures increases, which can arise even with minor movements or impacts, requiring greater care to avoid accidents. Learn about the best treatments and exercises to strengthen bones and prevent fractures.
How to immobilize the affected limb
Immobilization of the fractured limb is very important to try to prevent aggravation of the fracture and ensure that the tissues continue to be properly perfused with blood. So, to make the immobilization you must:
1. In closed fracture
A closed fracture is one in which the bone has broken, but the skin is closed, not allowing the bone to be seen. In these cases, a splint should be placed on each side of the fracture and a ligature applied from the beginning to the end of the splints, as shown in the image. Ideally, the splints should pass above and below the joints near the site.
2. In open fracture
In open fractures, the bone is exposed and, therefore, the site should not be covered with a ligature at the time of immobilization, since in addition to worsening the pain, it also favors the entry of microorganisms into the wound.
In these cases, a splint must be passed behind the affected site and then, with a ligature, tied above and below the fracture, leaving it exposed.
When to suspect a fracture
Fracture should be suspected whenever there is an impact on a limb, accompanied by symptoms such as:
- intense pain;
- Swelling or deformation;
- Formation of a purplish area;
- Crackling sounds when moving or inability to move the limb;
- Shortening of the affected limb.
If the fracture is exposed, it is possible to see the bone out of the skin, and heavy bleeding is common. Know how to identify the main symptoms of fracture.
Confirmation of the fracture is made by the doctor after a physical evaluation and an x-ray of the affected person, and then the orthopedist may indicate the most recommended treatment, which involves bone repositioning, immobilization with splints and plasters or, in some cases, cases, surgery.
Always consult a doctor.
Verified by RJ985 – Brazilian natural medicine CMIO.org