Every year, about 10 out of every 1,000 children go to the ER for a fracture, most often a lower arm fracture. Dr. Steven D. Eggleston has extensive pediatric orthopedic experience, where his ability to connect with even the youngest patients goes a long way toward making their treatment smooth and successful. Children and teens are vulnerable to fractures that are unique from adults and may have different symptoms. If you have any questions about your child’s symptoms, call Eggleston Orthopedics in Lake Jackson, Texas, or book an appointment online.
Children’s bones are still developing, which means they have characteristics that are different from adult bones and that set the stage for specific types of fractures.
These are examples of fractures that occur in children:
Children have growth plates at the ends of the long bones in their arms and legs. These growth plates are the weakest part of the bone, which means that a fall or other injury most often fractures the growth plate rather than the bone. Without prompt treatment, this type of fracture can interfere with normal growth and cause bone deformities.
Buckle fractures, also called torus fractures, develop when one side of the bone is compressed, causing the other side to bend away from the growth plate. These fractures occur in children because their bones are more flexible and less dense.
This type of fracture is similar to a buckle fracture, except that it’s a true break (rather than a compression fracture) that only goes partway through the bone.
Children generally develop the same classic fracture and sprain symptoms as adults: pain, swelling, bruising, and difficulty using the affected area. A displaced fracture, where the ends of the broken bone are out of alignment, may make the area look deformed.
However, their developing bone structure can lead to other symptoms, especially if they fracture a growth plate.
Beyond the classic symptoms, children and teens may:
Even if your child’s symptoms seem minor, it’s important to bring them in to see Dr. Eggleston to be sure they don’t have growth plate damage.
Children are definitely susceptible to overuse injuries. In fact, repetitive stress and overuse injuries in children are on the rise. They’re most likely to develop overuse injuries when their muscles don’t have time to heal from normal stress and microtears in soft tissues. Your child is at a higher risk if they participate in frequent athletic activities, play in multiple sports, or play the same sport throughout the year.
If your child’s pain lasts a few days or limits their activity, call Eggleston Orthopedics or use the online booking feature to schedule an appointment.