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What is spiral fracture

Breaking of the bone is medically called a fracture and it can be caused by high impact stress or an injury. There is more than one type of the bone fracture and some of them are spiral, incomplete, complete and linear. There is another type, which is oblique fracture, and it is very hard to distinguish it from the spiral fracture. Other types are compacted, compound and Holstein-Lewis fracture.

Spiral Fracture

Spiral fracture occurs due to the twisting, and as we have said, this fracture is easily mistaken for the oblique fracture. It is also called torsion fracture and the most common way of getting them is with a sport injury or by falling down the stairs. On the X-ray, this fracture will have a corkscrew shape and with the bone axis and fracture in parallel position. This type of injury is common among those with fragile bones, which can happen due to age or poor nutrition. When you ski, you may twist the leg, which might result in the spiral fracture, due to the ski boots which make you lose control. This results in the violent twist and the fracture, inducing great amount of pain and several months of the ski slopes. Child abuse, when grabbing or twisting the child's arm, can be the cause of spiral fracture as well. When a child with this type of injury is admitted to the hospital, child abuse will be suspected and measures will be taken. But there are other causes of spiral fracture among children, so not every spiral fracture in a child is caused by abuse.

Spiral Fracture of Fibula and Tibia

Twisting of the leg is the motion that might cause the spiral fracture. When we find ourselves in this situation, we will lose balance but we will reflexively try to regain it and stand normally. If the tibia suffers excessive pressure, it will crack and there will probably be a fracture of the fibula as well. The leg's upper area is where the spiral fracture of the fibula happens, while the lower area is when broken tibia is located. Humerus can also suffer fracture in these situations.

Treatment

The fracture and its spiral shape will make the treatment last longer. Factors like location of the fracture, general health and circumstances under which the fracture occurred, will determine the length of the recovery. Cast and surgery are two treatment options. The broken bones will have to be placed in normal position and this will be done by surgery, while the cast will keep everything in the right position until the bone heals completely. Internal fixation, with the use of metal rods, pins and others, might also be needed.

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