Broken Bones

Broken Bones

We hope you never experience the unfortunate event of a broken bone, but on occasion, accidents happen. If you suspect a broken bone, it is crucial to seek immediate medical attention. Bones have the remarkable ability to start healing themselves right after an injury or fracture.

At Vital Urgent Care, we are open every day, staffed with a full medical team and equipped with digital X-ray capabilities. This enables us to promptly examine your broken bone.

What is a Broken Bone?

The term "broken bone" is synonymous with "fracture." Both terms describe the result of direct and excessive force applied to a bone. The level of force determines whether the bone breaks, shatters, or cracks.

While broken collarbones, arms, wrists, and ankles are the most common, any bone can break if subjected to excessive force. Different types of injuries affect bones in different ways, leading to various types of breaks. Here are some of the most common:

  • Stress fracture: Repetitive motion causes a small crack in the bone.
  • Simple (closed) fracture: Despite the bone break, the skin and surrounding tissue remain intact.
  • Open or compound fracture: A piece of bone protrudes through the skin.
  • Greenstick fracture: The bone bends and breaks on one side. This type of break is commonly seen in children.

Treatment of Broken Bones

Our medical team at Vital Urgent Care will carefully examine your fracture and order X-rays to determine the extent, type, and precise location. This information helps us determine the best treatment option and follow-up care. For less severe fractures, a fiberglass splint may be used to immobilize the bone and initiate proper healing. However, please note that we do not provide casts or plaster for mending.

Certain types of fractures may require immediate referral to an orthopedic specialist for further evaluation. Compound fractures, in particular, pose an increased risk of infection and necessitate urgent care.

To alleviate discomfort, you can take pain relievers. Over-the-counter options such as acetaminophen, aspirin, or ibuprofen may suffice depending on the severity of the break. In some cases, a stronger prescription medication may be necessary.


Unlike broken bones, dislocations occur when joints are forced out of their natural position. This often leads to considerable pain. Commonly dislocated joints include knees, shoulders, elbows, and ankles, which can happen during contact sports or after a fall. Dislocated joints are typically swollen, painful, and immobile. Seeking medical attention immediately is crucial, as displaced joints can result in nerve or ligament damage.

Joints can be reset through manipulation and movement, although certain dislocations may require rehabilitation or the use of slings. Swift resolution of a dislocated joint can significantly impact its future functionality.

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