Serious fractures often result from a traumatic incident such as a motor vehicle accident (high-energy trauma) or a bad fall (low-energy trauma). People of all ages are vulnerable to these injuries, which often require rapid and precise treatment with surgical procedures. Accidents are the leading cause of death in those under the age of 44, with many more sustaining fractures from these events.
In addition, seniors with fragile bones from osteoporosis often develop pelvic fractures and fractures of the acetabulum when they have a lower impact fall, a leading cause of death in the elderly. More than 300,000 people over the age of 65 sustain hip fractures each year with 18% to 33% dying within the first year, even with uncomplicated treatment.
Pelvic and acetabular fractures are best treated by surgeons with extensive experience operating in the pelvis. This region performs an important mechanical function and its proximity to important anatomic structures renders it even more complex. Dr. Daniel C. Allison’s extensive experience in the treatment of pelvic tumors of bone and soft tissue and pathologic fractures of the pelvis renders him very capable of handling these challenging fractures with relative ease. Call (310) 730-8008 to learn more and schedule an appointment in Los Angeles today.Contact An Orthopedic Surgeon
Types of Skeletal Trauma
Pelvic fractures and acetabular fractures are among the most serious injuries treated by orthopedic surgeons. Periarticular fractures are another critical injury that occurs in or immediately adjacent to a joint. Since joints allow movement of the limbs, a skeletal fracture at either end of a joint can cause severe pain and disability.
An orthopedic trauma specialist like Dr. Allison has the expertise to intervene and improve outcomes from these potentially devastating injuries, as well as orthopedic disorders arising from potential complications, which can include:
Failure to properly set a bone injury can often cause a mal-union. In a mal-union, bones fuse in a way that causes a malformation, with the bone rotated or bent and in some cases, overlapped. The result is impairment or loss of mobility from deformity or shortening of the limb. Physicians can usually assess whether there is a mal-union problem within six months of surgery.
Skeletal fractures which fail to heal properly can cause a misalignment of the injured bones. Circumstances that could lead to a non-union include inadequate blood supply to the healing bones, infection, or unstable repair. Often these failures occur after a high-impact skeletal injury arising from a traumatic event such as a car accident. Skeletal trauma of this magnitude often affect blood flow as a result of multiple injuries and blood loss.
Osteomyelitis is an infection of the bone which can be caused by staph bacteria in the bloodstream or tissue. While surgical precautions and medical advances have minimized risk of osteomyelitis, it is known to occur sometimes. It can also develop from an open wound such as an open fracture, or as a secondary infection from a blood clot near injured bone.
Pelvic and Acetabular
Fractures of the pelvis and acetabulum are among the most serious injuries treated by orthopaedic surgeons. The pelvis, which is the central foundation of the skeleton, can become a potential source of long-term disability when damaged and could even be life threatening. An acetabular fracture occurs when the socket of the hip joint is broken and is less common than most hip fractures that typically affect the “ball” of the joint (the top of the femur).
Peri-Articular and Long-Bone
Periarticular fractures most often occur in the ankle, leg (tibia), thigh (distal femur) and elbow, although they may involve any joint.
These fractures occur around or immediately adjacent a joint where bones meet and ligaments and tendons provide support and stability. Fractures near a joint can cause severe pain with movement or even inhibit range of motion. Treatment for these long bone fractures is more complex due to the surrounding structures and tissues that are often damaged at the time of injury.
Some fractures, such as hip and femur fractures, require surgical treatment as quickly as possible. Other fractures can be well managed without surgery. Other types of fractures may be treated either with or without surgery, and such a decision will be based on patient preference after a full explanation of all treatment options along with their risks and benefits. The goal of treatment in these cases is to help patients return to their pre-injury level of functioning.
Please read more about advanced skeletal trauma from WebMD.com.
Contact the Orthopedic Trauma Specialist
For help with a complex traumatic injury, Dr. Daniel C. Allison and his staff provide the best care and expertise in cases of major musculoskeletal damage for limb preservation. We specialize in patients with traumatic injuries including fractures of the pelvis, acetabulum, other major joints (elbow, shoulder, hip, knee and ankle), calcaneus and long bone injuries. Together, we can devise the best treatment option for you. Please contact our office for an appointment at (310) 730-8008.Contact Us Today
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