Upper Extremity Specialists

Orthopedic Surgeons located in La Jolla, CA & Chula Vista, CA

Trauma is a common cause of orthopedic injuries and problems. Kristopher Downing, MD, & Dr. James Andry, MD at Upper Extremity Specialists of Ortho 1 Medical Group in La Jolla and Chula Vista, California, offer expert diagnosis and treatments for trauma such as fractures and tendon tears. If you’ve sustained a traumatic orthopedic injury, call Upper Extremity Specialists of Ortho 1 Medical Group or make an appointment online today.

Trauma Q & A

What are common orthopedic traumas?

Most physical injuries, including sprains, strains, and tears, could be treated by an orthopedic specialist. However, fractures are the most severe type of injury that require orthopedic treatment. 

Hairline fractures

Hairline fractures are thin cracks in a bone that don’t go the whole way through. They often form from repetitive strain or from a mild impact. When left untreated, hairline fractures can become more severe.

Stable fracture

Stable fractures separate the bone, but the ends of your bone line up and are barely out of their usual place. 

Compound fractures

Compound fractures are more severe breaks with increased displacement. Depending on the severity of your fracture, your bone could pierce your skin.

Comminuted fracture

Comminuted fractures occur when a bone breaks into three or more pieces. Comminuted fractures usually require surgical repair. 

Your risk of breaking a bone increases if you have osteoporosis or put your body through the stress of overuse and repetitive motions. 

How are traumatic orthopedic injuries diagnosed?

The Upper Extremity Specialists of Ortho 1 Medical Group team offers thorough exams to diagnose trauma injuries. They ask about your symptoms and what you were doing when the damage occurred. They feel your injury and look for signs of bruising, swelling, or deformity. 

They may also use X-rays or MRI scans to confirm their diagnosis and pinpoint the precise location of your injury. 

How is orthopedic trauma treated?

The doctors at Upper Extremity Specialists of Ortho 1 Medical Group provide customized treatments depending on the type and severity of your trauma. For example, some mild injuries may heal with a short period of compression and immobilization with a cast or sling. Some fractures may require a cast. 

Severe fractures and injuries often need surgical treatment to reset the bone. During surgery, your doctor removes any bone shards or debris from the injury and realigns the bone. They may use metal pins to secure the pieces of your bone together. 

Severe compound or comminuted fractures require casting for several weeks, and sometimes months, to allow your bone to knit together. 

Physical therapy is also essential when recovering from a traumatic injury. Physical therapy helps you maintain or rebuild your strength and flexibility during and after your treatment. 

Call Upper Extremity Specialists of Ortho 1 Medical Group or make an appointment online today for expert diagnosis and treatment for orthopedic trauma.