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The Orange County California broken bone injury attorneys at DiMarco | Araujo | Montevideo have handled broken bone injury cases since 1979. Broken bones are very common and we are prepared to discuss your case with you and help you receive the compensation you are due. We have represented people with broken bones who have workers’ compensation claim cases, work injury cases, and personal injury cases. In fact, many car accidents that cause broken bones fall into the work injury category because the injured victim was driving while on the job and a third party caused the accident. Contact DiMarco | Araujo | Montevideo today at (714) 783-2205 for a free consultation.
The medical term for a broken bone is a fracture and in the United States, the average person has at least two fractures over the course of their life. Typically one of those two incidences of fracture happens during childhood as kids break their bones very frequently due to a variety of causes. Fractures happen when the amount of physical force that is applied to the bone or bones is stronger than the bone. The result is a disruption in the continuity of the bone (and unfortunately, pain). In the medical world, broken bones and fractures can be abbreviated in a number of ways that include Fx, FRX, or #. The good news is that bones will heal most of the time since they are in a constant state of renewal, anyway, throughout our life.
Please consult your doctor as this paragraph is only meant as general information. It is not always easy to tell if the bones are broken, especially when it is a hairline fracture or it is not a complete break. Common symptoms of a fracture are pain, swelling, bruising, tenderness. Your doctor may use X-Rays as a way to confirm or locate the break.
Broken bones come in every shape and circumstance. The medical world has categorized all fractures into some very general types. It is possible that your broken bone may fit into multiple of these categories.
Open Broken Bone Injuries: With open fractures, the broken bone has created a hole in the skin. It is still considered an open break if the bone breaks the skin’s surface but then goes back beneath the skin. Open fractures carry the additional risk of a deep bone infection called osteomyelitis. The condition of osteomyelitis could be acute or chronic and is caused by infectious germs. It is important that you tell the medical professionals who assist you if you know you have an open broken bone as they will work to prevent infection. It will normally affect the long bones in the skeleton like the spine and leg bones. Open broken bones are also referred to as compound fractures.
Closed Broken Bone Injuries: With a closed fracture, the bone or bones still did break but the trauma did not cause a hole in the outer skin. Closed broken bones are also referred to as simple fractures. It may not seem simple to the victim due to the fact that it still is a broken bone and it is painful, but the lack of a puncture wound does lessen the chance of infection.
Displaced Broken Bone Injuries: These types of fractures are when the bone snaps into one or more pieces and moves out of its normal positioning. The bone is considered commuted if the fracture caused the bone to break into a large multitude of pieces. How a bone breaks and what its final condition is all play a factor in determining the length of time before it is fully healed and what your treatment options are.
Non-displaced Broken Bone Injuries: The fractures that fall into this category are those where the bone cracks (either full or partial) but does not break or move.
Greenstick Broken Bone Injuries: Statistically, this type of fracture happens more often in children. It is when the bone has been bent because of trauma but has not broken. They can be harder to diagnose since the injury does not display all the usual symptoms and signs of fractures. They happen to children more because of kid’s typically softer and more bendable bones.
Transverse Broken Bone Injuries: This is when the break itself is at a right angle to the bone. An example of this could be if a baseball bat hits and breaks the shin bone. The shin bone goes up and down but the break is happening from the front to the back.
Linear Broken Bone Injuries: This is the opposite of transverse broken bones since linear fractures are when the break’s line is parallel to the bone.
Impacted Broken Bone Injuries: These unfortunate cases are when two bone’s ends are driven into the other due to the trauma. These types of fractures are most common in older adults and young children as both groups of people are the most likely to fall, trip or slip. It takes a person until they are around thirty for their bones to reach their highest point of strength.
Pathologic Broken Bone Injuries: These fractures are any broken bones that happen because an area is weakened due to another disease like infections, tumors, osteoporosis, and some bone disorders. Osteoporosis is a major pathologic cause of bones becoming weak around the world. Osteoporosis is occurring when the bone is losing old bone cells faster than it is adding new bone cells. Many doctors recommend frequent bone density tests to help determine your risk of osteoporosis and the equivalent “age” of your bone strength compared to your true age.
Stress Fractures: These cases are very different from most other fractures. They are not because of one, single, acute injury event but rather they are caused by a repetitive force during a long duration that eventually works itself into a stress fracture. Athletes commonly have stress fractures in their feet and shins. Poor nutrition can play a part in putting someone at a higher risk of getting a stress fracture.
The skull was designed to protect our most critical area of the body: the brain. It has more structural support on the top than on the sides probably to help protect us from falling objects. The eight cranial bones are the frontal bone, the two parietal bones that are the top and sides of the skull, the two temporal bones that are below and to the rear of the parietal bones, the occipital bone that protects the back of the skull, the sphenoid bone is one of the smaller cranial bones and is in front of the temporal bone, and the final cranial bone is the ethmoid bone which is the bone that is in between the brain and the nasal cavity. These eight bones combined are a masterpiece of functionality and strength.
The facial bones consist of fourteen bones that are designed to be flexible enough so the face can function while protecting the face as much as possible. The orbits of the eyes are a good example as there are seven bones that come together to form them. The facial bones include the hyoid bone in the throat, the mandible which is the lower jaw and where the lower teeth are anchored to, the two maxilla bones that are sometimes referred to as the mustache bone since they form the upper jaw, the two palatine bones, the two cheekbones (zygomatic bones), the two nasal bones that are next to each other and create the nose’s bridge, the lacrimal bone, the vomer, and the inferior nasal concha (or sometimes known as the inferior Turbinated Bone).
The collarbone is also called the clavicle. It is one of the two important bones that make up the shoulder. The collarbone’s main functions are to hold up the shoulder while protecting the nerves and blood vessels in that region. Males in their teens have a high rate of breaking their collarbone as it most commonly happens when playing sports or falling while your arm is outstretched. Kids also will break their clavicle while playing rough with each other or falling off playground equipment.
The other main bone in the construction of the shoulder is the scapula. It is commonly known as the shoulder blade. It is designed to not only provide strength for the shoulder but protect the area between it and the rib cage. There are three types of scapula fractures that are the most common: scapula body fractures, scapular neck fractures and glenoid fractures.
The thorax is made up of twenty-five bones. They are the twenty-four rib bones and the one sternum (though some believe the sternum to be made up of three individual bones called the xiphoid process, the gladiolus (body of the sternum) and the manubrium. The sternum is what most of the ribs tie into in the front of the chest. Breaking the sternum is not very common. An example of breaking the sternum bone is when a driver gets pushed or crushed forward into the steering wheel during a motorized vehicle accident. A broken sternum could mean more damage below it as it can cause cuts and bruises to the lung tissues and capillaries. The twenty-four ribs of the human body protect many of our internal organs. Broken ribs can be very painful. This includes when the patient laughs or breathes heavily.
The spinal cord is discussed in depth elsewhere but here is a general overview. It has seven cervical vertebrae, twelve thoracic vertebrae and five lumbar vertebrae.
Forearms are more common to break than the upper arms. The forearm is made up of the two long bones called the radial and the ulna. These bones often break due to falls or trauma from fighting, auto accidents, or injuries sustained while playing sports. When the break is somewhere in the middle of the bone (not near the wrist or the elbow) then it is called a radial shaft break or ulnar shaft break. Radial head breaks are when the radial bone breaks near the elbow. Olecranon breaks are fractures at the end of the ulna bone near the elbow. It is sometimes referred to as the “funny bone” part of the arm.
The upper arm is comprised of one very thick bone called the humerus. Where the humerus meets the shoulder socket is the humerus head. Two parts of this area that frequently break are the anatomical neck of the humerus and the surgical neck of the humerus.
The palm bones are what bridge the fingers and the wrist. The metacarpal bones make up the palm as there is one for each finger and thumb. These bones are most often broken when someone punches an object with too much force or that is too hard.
The fingers are very incredible and are the key to many of our daily activities like eating, typing, writing, driving, etc. They are comprised of many bones. It is very common for fingers to break, sprain or dislocate. Often time, the treatment will just be taping the finger to a healthy finger and allowing it the time needed to heal. Each finger has three bones while the thumb only has two bones above the wrist. Their names are in direct relation to the bone’s position away or close to the palm. The closest bone to the wrist is the proximal phalanx. The middle bone amongst the four fingers is the middle phalanx, while the last bone (and furthest from the palm) is the distal phalanx. The thumb’s two bones are the proximal phalanx and the distal phalanx.
These are the most common types of broken bones for all patients under sixty-five. More than 15% of all broken bone cases in an emergency room will be for wrist fractures. This is especially true for young children because they often fall and use their arms to try and stop the fall. A wrist fracture is usually referring to either of the two forearm bones being broken. They are the radius and ulna. Together, these two big bones go from the wrist to the elbow. The scaphoid is another bone that breaks near the wrist. It can also be referred to as the navicular bone. It can be found beneath the thumb.
The scaphoid is part of the set of eight carpal bones that make up the wrist joint that allows for most of the movement of the upper part of the hand. The eight bones are in two rows. One row has the scaphoid bone, lunate bone, triquetrum bone, and pisiform bone and the other has the trapezium bone, trapezoid bone, capitate bone, and hamate bone. The most common of these to break is the scaphoid bone.
The pelvis region of the human body has four bones. Included here are the two hip bones. They are the most common bones that people over sixty-five break. The hips have the following three parts: the ilium, the ischium, and the pubis. There are obviously two hips bones as each leg fits into one at the hip joint. Most broken hips occur because of osteoporosis. The other two bones of the pelvis are the coccyx and the sacrum. The sacrum is at the bottom of the spine whereas the coccyx is considered the tailbone by many. All combined, these four bones also create the pelvic cavity where the reproductive organs can be found. Due to that reason, their strength is very important to protect this vital area of the body.
The thigh has one big bone for each leg called the femur. The femur is actually the biggest bone in the entire body. Though it is able to support over 25 times the weight of an average adult, femur bones can break. Typically though, trauma to the thighs will cause the hips to break rather than the strong femur. In total, the lower legs consist of six bones (three for each leg). They are the patella, tibia, and fibula. The tibia and fibula are found below the knee whereas the patella is the bone whose more common name is the kneecap.
About 10% of all broken bones that are suffered are foot fractures. The feet are actually made up of many bones and are often in vulnerable situations or unprotected. An example of this is when walking, running, or kicking, it is very easy to accidentally kick a hard object and break your toe(s). The foot is divided into three sections consisting of the forefoot, midfoot, and hindfoot. In all, these three sections have twenty-six bones. Since we are constantly using our feet and putting weight upon them, foot fractures can be some of the most disruptive to lives. This is especially true when they inhibit people from driving, walking, climbing stairs, or even standing.
The front part of the foot has nineteen bones and is called the forefoot. It is long and has a similar makeup to the bone structure of the fingers and palm of the hand. The toes each have a distal phalanx at the tip and the middle phalanx comes next (though the big toe does not have one just like the thumb). Proximal phalanges come next and they connect to the metatarsal bones that are long. This section of the foot includes what is known as the ball of the foot.
The middle part of the foot has five bones which include the navicular, cuboid, medial cuneiform bone, intermediate cuneiform bone and lateral cuneiform bone. The main two functions of this section of the foot are to create the arch in the foot and absorb the shocks that the feet have to take on a daily basis.
The back of the foot, or the hindfoot, has two larger bones called the talus and the calcaneus. The talus is what is connected to the leg bones and is considered the ankle. The calcaneus is the biggest bone of the foot and makes up the heel. In general, it is very important to protect and take good care of your feet.
The top three causes for broken bones are from falls, osteoporosis, and car accidents. The most common causes for broken bones are as follows:
Treatments and rehabilitation will differ for broken bones depending on the location(s), the severity of the break, the type of break, and the other injuries sustained. Commonly, the doctor will just need to set a bone properly (called reduction) and then let it heal as the bone rebuilds itself over time. In cases where the bones need artificial help to get into the right alignment, pins, screws, rods, and plates may be used. These devices may or may not be removed later.
Initial case consultations and evaluations are free and confidential. They will be with one of our experienced Orange County accident attorneys so you get a chance to fully discuss your case and learn of your options. The better news is it that not only is the initial meeting free, you will not incur any legal fees or expenses for our assistance or time unless and until we win your case. The qualified Orange County personal injury lawyers at DiMarco | Araujo | Montevideo will meet you at our office, your home, or your hospital room any time on Monday through Friday between 8:30 am and 5:30 pm. By appointment, our lawyers will also meet you on Saturday and Sunday and in the evening. Contact us today online or call us at (714) 783-2205 for a free consultation