fractured bone

fractured bone

this animation shows what can happen whensomeone fractures their wrist, and how a fractured wrist is treated. click the navigation arrowsbelow the animation screen to play, pause, rewind or fast-forward the animation. thisanimation contains sound. your body is protected and supported by a framework of bone calledyour skeleton. your bones are very strong. they have three main parts: compact bone onthe outside, spongy bone on the inside and bone marrow, right at the centre. your bonesalso have a nerve and blood supply. the structure of bone makes it very tough. a bone will onlybreak if it's put under a lot of force or twisted awkwardly. a broken bone is said tobe fractured. fractures are painful because bone has a nerve and blood supply. if youtrip, you usually break your fall by outstretching

your hands. this puts a lot of pressure onthe wrist bone which may cause it to fracture. here we show the forces that are acting onthe wrist bone when it hits the ground to break your fall. there are many differenttypes of fractures. a common type is a fracture of the wrist called a colles' fracture. thistype is usually caused by tripping over with the arms stretched out to break a fall. herewe show what the broken bone looks like in a colles' fracture. the two edges of the bonehave moved out of line. colles' fractures are most common in women over 50. people whohave weakened bones due to osteoporosis are more likely to break their wrist when theyfall. once the wrist bone has been fractured, it may be out of line. if this isn't corrected,the wrist will heal in the wrong position.

if the two pieces of bone have been displaced,they need to be repositioned so that they are lined up correctly. this is known as reduction.this can be achieved by pulling on the hand, then manipulating the wrist and hand. thebone is now lined up so it will heal in the same shape as before the fracture. your doctorwill put a plaster cast around your arm to fix it in the correct position and supportthe bone while it's healing. this is the end of the animation. click on the animation screento watch it again.

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