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Acute foot fracture

According to certain studies, almost 10% of all fractures happen in the 26 bones of the foot. Not a lot of people knew that there are 26 bones in the foot. Two of these bones are in the hind foot, five in the midfoot and the remaining 19 in the forefoot. In addition to this, the foot also contains sesamoid bones.

Epidemiology

Age

When age is considered, people need to know that children have slightly stronger ligaments than bones or cartilage than adults, and that is why it is more common for children to experience fractures than sprains. It is sometimes hard to detect a metatarsal fracture in children because their feet are flexible and resilient to injuries and there are lots of growth centers there.  This is why doctors usually look at the uninjured foot as well at the same time. When a child complains of foot pain, it should not be neglected.

History

When a child is brought to the hospital because of foot pain, the doctor will need to know the mechanism of the injury, how much time has passed since the injury occurred and the point when the child was brought to the hospital and if there were any prior injuries.

Physical

Once the patient is in the hospital, the doctor will start a physical exam. In most cases, the exam consists of an inspection of the injured foot for swelling, open wounds and bruises and palpate for pulses, capillary refill, tenderness and crepitus. The doctor will usually place an uninjured foot next to the injured one for comparison. The doctor will also test the range of motion of the injured foot. If there are any open wounds, they will be explored.

Causes

In almost all cases of foot fracture, it occurs due to trauma. Trauma can be either direct or indirect. Overuse of the foot can sometimes lead to a fracture.

Before going to the hospital, the injured foot should be stabilized and the foot needs to be elevated.

Once the patient is in the hospital, the doctors will use ice, immobilize it and elevate it. Analgesia is given to all the patients who experienced severe foot fractures. People should know that there are several options for initial immobilization like reinforced bulky dressing and posterior or stirrup splints.

Some of the most common fractures that occur in the foot are toe fracture, first metatarsal fracture, fracture of internal metatarsals, fifth metatarsal fracture and March fracture.

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