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Preventing Fracture Complications
Several factors, such as age, poor diet, prior medical condition, lifestyle habits, certain medications, and infections, among others, can influence the fracture healing process.1 It is important to prevent fracture-related complications because, in the absence of prompt and appropriate treatment, they may worsen over time, leading to long-term health issues.2
Your treating doctor may use these additional measures or may advise a change in lifestyle to promote healing.
Effective Measures for Preventing Fracture Complications
Although most fractures heal without any challenges, fracture-related complications such as non-union, delayed union, etc., can occur in some patients.9 For more information, consult your healthcare provider.
Bone Growth Stimulators
Electrical stimulations may help in early healing by acting as a bone growth stimulator. However, further research is required for the widespread use of these devices.1
Correct Implant Material
Choosing the correct implants is crucial for successful fracture healing. Incorrect implant material or placement can lead to bone defects and prevent fracture healing.3
To know more about implant properties, and its safe and effective use, please talk to your treating doctor.
Bone grafts are used when the bones do not heal correctly after a fracture. These bone grafts can be taken from the patient (autograft) or a donor (allograft).4
Certain fractures can be treated with external or internal fixation. Fixators such as metal screws, pins, nails, rods, etc., can help stabilize the fractured bone and reduce the risk of malunion or non-union complications.5
Be Cautious About Steroid Intake
Corticosteroids can reduce bone formation by interfering with the bone-forming process.6
Smoking can increase the risk of bone complications, such as delayed union or non-union fractures, and slow down healing.7 Hence, giving up smoking may help prevent bone loss.8
Intake Of a Well-balanced Diet
Vitamin D and calcium are crucial for bone health. Hence, eating a well-balanced diet can be beneficial. Elderly patients may require dietary supplements to achieve adequate amounts of nutrients.8
Bone Mineral Density (BMD) Test
Bone mineral density (BMD) test helps determine bone density or bone mass. This test can help you understand your bone condition and detect osteoporosis.8
1. Sheen JR, Garla VV. Fracture Healing Overview. 2021. In: StatPearls. Treasure Island (FL): StatPearls Publishing; 2022. PMID: 31869142.
2. Mayo Clinic. Stress Fractures. [Internet] [Cited 02 May 2022]. Available from: www.mayoclinic.org
3. Tiffany Kim, Carmine Wang See, Xiaochun Li, et al. Orthopedic implants and devices for bone fractures and defects: Past, present, and perspective, Engineered Regeneration, Volume 1, 2020, Pages 6-18, ISSN 2666-1381.
4. Cleveland Clinic. Bone Grafting. [Internet] [Cited 18 Feb 2022] Available from: my.clevelandclinic.org
5. AAOS. Internal Fixation for Fractures [Internet] [Cited 18 Feb 2022] Available from: orthoinfo.aaos.org
6.Romas E. Corticosteroid-induced osteoporosis and fractures. Aust Prescr 2008;31:45-9.
7. Scolaro JA, Schenker ML, Yannascoli S, et al. Cigarette smoking increases complications following fracture: a systematic review. J Bone Joint Surg Am. 2014;96(8):674-81.
8. NIH. Smoking and Bone Health. [Internet] [Cited 18 Feb 2022] Available from: www.bones.nih.gov
9. Gajdobranski D, Zivković D. Poremećaji zarastanja preloma. Disorders in fracture healing. Med Pregl. 2003;56(3-4):146-51. Croatian. DOI:10.2298/mpns0304146g.