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Pelvic Fracture In Children

WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW:

A pelvic fracture is a break in 1 or more of your child's 5 pelvic (hip) bones. This also includes a fracture of the acetabulum, the part of the pelvis that makes up his hip joint. Pelvic fractures can be caused by car accidents, sports activities, physical abuse, or a fall from a great height. A pelvic fracture may also occur during birth, especially as the baby's hip passes through a narrow birth canal.

DISCHARGE INSTRUCTIONS:

Medicines:

  • Prescription pain medicine may be given. Ask your child's healthcare provider how to give this medicine safely.
  • 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.
  • Give your child's medicine as directed. Contact your child's healthcare provider if you think the medicine is not working as expected. Tell him or her 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.

Follow up with your child's healthcare provider as directed:

Write down your questions so you remember to ask them during your visits.

Activity:

  • Your child may need more rest than he realizes as he heals. Quiet play will keep your child safely busy so he does not become restless and risk hurting himself. Have your child read or draw quietly when he is awake. Follow instructions for how much rest your child should get while he heals.
  • Ask your child's healthcare provider when your child can be physically active again. Together you can plan the best exercise program for your child. It is best to start slowly and do more as he gets stronger. Do not let your child play sports, such as football or soccer, while his fracture is still healing. His fractured pelvis may break again, bleed, or bruise easily.
  • Make sure your child uses his crutches or walker correctly. To prevent him from falling, remove loose rugs from the floor. It may be easier for your child to get out of a chair if he uses chairs with side arms and hard cushions. You may also want to put a chair or a commode inside the shower for your child.

Ice:

Apply ice on your child's hip for 15 to 20 minutes every hour or as directed. Use an ice pack, or put crushed ice in a plastic bag. Cover it with a towel. Ice helps prevent tissue damage and decreases swelling and pain.

Physical therapy:

A physical therapist may teach your child exercises to strengthen his hip and legs once the pain is gone.

Contact your child's healthcare provider if:

  • Your child has a fever.
  • Your child's pain is getting worse, even after he has taken his pain medicine.
  • Your child's skin is itchy, swollen, or has a rash.
  • You have questions or concerns about your child's condition or care.

Seek care immediately or call 911 if:

  • Your child feels lightheaded, short of breath, and has chest pain.
  • Your child coughs up blood.
  • The area around your child's injured hip turns blue or feels cold and numb.

Further information

Always consult your healthcare provider to ensure the information displayed on this page applies to your personal circumstances.

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