Wrist Fracture In Children
WHAT YOU SHOULD KNOW:
A wrist fracture is a break in one or more of the bones in your child's wrist.
- Pain medicine: Your child may be given prescription medicine to decrease pain. Do not wait until the pain is severe before you give your child this medicine.
- Give your child's medicine as directed. Call your child's healthcare provider if you think the medicine is not working as expected. Tell him if your child is allergic to any medicine. Keep a current list of the medicines, vitamins, and herbs your child takes. Include the amounts, and when, how, and why they are taken. Bring the list or the medicines in their containers to follow-up visits. Carry your child's medicine list with you in case of an emergency.
- Do not give aspirin to children under 18 years of age. Your child could develop Reye syndrome if he takes aspirin. Reye syndrome can cause life-threatening brain and liver damage. Check your child's medicine labels for aspirin, salicylates, or oil of wintergreen.
Follow up with your child's primary healthcare provider or bone specialist as directed:
Write down any questions so you remember to ask them in your follow-up visits.
Your child may need more rest than he realizes while he heals.
Quiet play will keep your child safely busy so he does not become restless and risk injuring himself. Have your child read or draw quietly. Follow instructions for how much rest your child should get while he heals.
Ice helps decrease swelling and pain. Use an ice pack or put crushed ice in a plastic bag. Cover it with a towel and place it on your child's fractured wrist for 15 to 20 minutes every hour as directed.
Care for your child:
- Check the skin around your child's cast or splint daily for any redness or sores.
- If your child's splint is too tight, his fingers may be numb or tingle. Gently loosen the fasteners as directed to relieve the tightness.
- Do not let your child use a sharp or pointed object to scratch the skin under the cast or splint.
- Tell your child not to push down or lean on any part of the cast or splint, because it may break.
How to bathe with a cast or splint:
Before your child bathes, cover the cast or splint with a plastic bag. Tape the bag to the skin above your child's cast or splint to keep out water. Have your child hold his arm away from the water in case the bag leaks. It is important that your child does not get the cast or splint wet.
Your child may need physical therapy after his wrist has healed and the cast is removed. A physical therapist can teach him exercises to help improve movement and strength and to decrease pain.
Contact your child's primary healthcare provider or bone specialist if:
- Your child has a fever.
- There is a foul smell coming from under your child's cast.
- Your child has more pain or swelling than he did before the cast or splint was put on.
- You have questions or concerns about your child's condition or care.
Return to the emergency department if:
- Your child has increased pain that does not go away.
- Your child's cast breaks or is damaged.
- Your child's arm or hand feels numb.
- Your child's fingers on the injured wrist turn blue or white, or they are cold or numb.
- Your child's splint or cast is too tight.
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The above information is an educational aid only. It is not intended as medical advice for individual conditions or treatments. Talk to your doctor, nurse or pharmacist before following any medical regimen to see if it is safe and effective for you.