Patellar fracture diagnosis and treatment

The patella or knee cap is the joint where the ends of the femur and tibia meet and this point of the knee is also one of the most common areas of the knee to become injured. Fractures around the knee cap are usually caused by a sudden impact to the area for example if you fall from height onto the knee.

It is advised that you visit your GP to seek medical advice and treatment regarding knee fractures. Most knee fractures will not require much more treatment than firm compression of the knee, elevation of the injured area in order to encourage blood flow from the area, rest and the application of ice. Firm compression of the area can be achieved through the use of adjustable knee supports. You can find the NuovaHealth range of knee supports by clicking here. However there can be complications relating to knee fracture injuries so it is important to see your GP to rule out any serious issues that need looking at and require extra medical treatment.

Complications can occur due to how serious the fall is which can impact the type of fracture caused, complications can also arise due to age with the elderly more likely to suffer severe injuries to the bone due to weakened bones.

The most common fracture is the stable fracture where bones do not become displaced and this is the easiest fracture to treat requiring standard physiotherapy such as compression.

The displaced fracture is where bones becomes displaced and is one of the forms of patellar fracture that may require surgery to repair. Due to the displacement of the bones, the joint may not be able to heal by itself without outside intervention in the form of surgery in order to realign the bones into the correct position. This is why it is important that you have your knee examined by a knee specialist as incorrect diagnosis can mean that after the healing process has finished your bones become fixed in a painful new misaligned position that causes permanent discomfort and loss of function in the knee.

The comminuted fracture is one of the more complicated forms of patellar fracture to repair. Complications arise due to the bones fracturing into different pieces and misalignment of the bones. Surgical intervention is required to restore adequate knee function but full knee recovery may not be possible depending on the severity of the fracture and how many pieces the bone has been broken into.

Open fractures are a combination of knee bone injury as well as an open wound in the surrounding tissue. Muscles and tendons may be weakened or injured and need repairing adding to the complications in getting your knee back into working order. There is also the added risk of infection due to the open wound. Severe open fractures are the absolute worst case scenarios for knee injuries and require a long time to heal.

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