A fibula fracture is considered as a common injury that affects the lower part of the leg. It usually affects athletes especially those who engage in contact sports. The tibia and fibula comprises the major bones forming a region of the lower legs and they are predisposed to fractures since the skin as well as the subcutaneous tissues is thin. The tibia and fibula run parallel to one another, thus any fracture in the tibia can break the fibula.
How do I know if an individual has a fibula fracture?
A fibula fracture that does not involve the tibia typically heals faster. The common symptoms of this fracture include tenderness and swelling close to the fracture site. There is also pain and discomfort if the individual walks or if weight is placed on the affected leg.
Diagnosing a fibula fracture
The doctor will examine the injured leg for a fibula fracture as well as check the affected leg for any injury, deformity, swelling, bruising, abrasion and tenderness. There is a possibility that the nerves and blood vessels along the bone might be damaged due to the broken bones, thus the doctor will check the pulses to determine if there is any injury. The responses to touch will also be assessed. In case there is damage to the bones, a slight touch on the affected area can cause pain. An X-ray will be carried out to help determine the severity and the location of the broken bones.
Treatment for fibula fracture
A fibula fracture that transpires without any break on the tibia can be easily treated by first aid measures at home as long as instructions are provided by a health care professional. Take note that most cases of this injury can be treated at home and there is no need for hospitalization. Instruct the individual to rest the affected limb and apply a cold pack or ice wrapped in towel. Provide over-the-counter medications for pain such as ibuprofen for pain relief.
For severe fractures that pierced the skin, the individual will be given intravenous antibiotics via the vein to prevent infection. In most cases, a tetanus shot is given to those who have not received a tetanus shot in the past years.
It will take some time for a fibula fracture to fully heal. During the healing process, your doctor can recommend a chiropractic expert so that you will be given physical therapy as part of your daily routine. The healing time for this fracture can last for a few weeks. In case of severe damage that affects both the tibia and fibula or deep ankle fractures, the last option is no other than surgery.
Fibula fracture can heal within a few weeks and the individual must comply with the medications as well as the recommendations so that tension or strain on the bones can be avoided during the healing process.