Fracture Care

Care of Fractures in Children and Teens

Fractures or so-called “broken bones” are an injury quite common in children and adolescents. Because of the special needs of the developing musculoskeletal system the treatment of pediatric fractures can be significantly different than adult fractures and requires the specialized knowledge of a pediatric orthopedic surgeon.

Fractures in children may be caused by falls in playgrounds or from sports related injuries. Fractures are the most common injury received by children in Motor Vehicle Accidents. The difference between a fracture in a child from that of an adult is in children a fracture can and does occur in the area of the bone where it is still growing, called the growth plate. This type of pediatric orthopedic injury can interfere with the future growth of the bone, which can lead to loss of function as well as leave the affected limb short or deformed.

The Doctors of Children's Bone & Spine Surgery, "The correct treatment of pediatric fractures is so important to help prevent future complications and the potential need for additional treatment for that child." The Pediatric orthopedic surgeon has the unique training and specialized know-how to understand what kind of treatment will be the most effective for a given child presented with a fracture, and are the most qualified to manage pediatric fractures.

Parents should be aware that most hospital emergency rooms in Las Vegas have an Orthopedic Surgeon on duty. There are only a few Pediatric Emergency Rooms with a Pediatric Orthopedic Surgeon on duty.

Because a child with a minor fracture may still be able to use the limb it is important that parents learn to recognize the signs of a fracture.

  • A child’s refusal to use a joint or an arm or leg
  • Inability to bear weight
  • Swelling/Bruising or deformity of a joint or a long bone

Prevention of Pediatric Fractures
Pediatric Orthopedic specialists recommend that parents take the following measures to prevent or minimize the chances of pediatric fractures:

  • Always see that children are properly supervised when at play
  • Be sure that your children wear appropriate protective gear: wrist guards, helmets, knee pads, etc. during activities such as rollerblading or biking
  • Any child involved in team sports or athletics should be in good physical shape and train to maintain it, as fatigue and weakness often leads to a stumble that can cause a fracture

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