A fracture is a broken bone. A bone may be completely fractured or partially fractured in any number of ways (crosswise, lengthwise, in multiple pieces). The diagnosing and the treating of broken bones (fractures) is one element of an orthopedic specialist’s work.
An orthopedic specialist can usually recognize most fractures by examining the injury and taking X-rays. While X-rays are a common way to diagnose broken bones, not all show a fracture. Other tests that may be performed, include computed tomography (CT) scan, magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) or a bone scan.
From cast immobilization and splinting to surgical intervention, appropriate treatment by an orthopedic specialist at is based on the severity of the injury as well as the patient’s expectations and needs.