Wrist Fracture (Distal Radius Fractures)


A wrist fracture is the most common broken bone in the arm. Your arm is comprised of two bones: the radius and ulna. At the end of the radius bone near the wrist, it’s called the distal end. A fracture occurs when the radius breaks and often break one inch from the end of the bone. If you have a wrist fracture you may have the following symptoms: pain, tenderness, bruising, swelling and your wrist will hang abnormally.
This injury most often occurs due to people falling on an outstretched arm or an accident. Many wrist fractures occur in adults who are older than 60 years old caused by a fall from a standing position. Osteoporosis (fragile bones with an increased chance of breaking) causes simple falls to result in broken wrists.

Nonsurgical Treatment Options for a Wrist Fracture

To treat a fractured wrist, we must first weigh factors like the severity of your fracture, age, and activity level. If your broken bone is in a good position, we may suggest putting a cast on it. Your cast will be on until your bone heals.

However, if your bone isn’t in the correct position, we will move the broken piece into place and then place it in a splint or cast. We can do this without having to open the wound. Wear your splint for the first few days to reduce swelling.  Then you will be fit for a cast. Every two to three weeks you will get a new cast allowing for more swelling to go down.

After six weeks we will remove your cast and you will begin physical therapy. Physical therapy will assist you in regaining the full range of motion and function of your wrist.

While you’re unable to prevent many injuries, you may want to get wrist guards to try and prevent future injuries.