Your Care Instructions
You may have a broken (fractured) bone. At this time, the break is not visible in X-rays.
Even if the X-rays didn't show a break, there may be one. And not all breaks can be seen on an X-ray. The doctor may want you to wear a splint to protect the bone. The splint will keep the bone from moving. This lets the bone start to heal and helps prevent further injury. You may need a follow-up X-ray in 1 to 2 weeks.
The doctor has checked you carefully, but problems can develop later. If you notice any problems or new symptoms, get medical treatment right away.
Follow-up care is a key part of your treatment and safety. Be sure to make and go to all appointments, and call your doctor if you are having problems. It's also a good idea to know your test results and keep a list of the medicines you take.
How can you care for yourself at home?
- Be safe with medicines. Read and follow all instructions on the label.
- If the doctor gave you a prescription medicine for pain, take it as prescribed.
- If you are not taking a prescription pain medicine, ask your doctor if you can take an over-the-counter medicine.
- Follow your doctor's directions for wearing a splint.
- If you can, prop up the injured area on a pillow when you ice it or anytime you sit or lie down during the next 3 days. Try to keep it above the level of your heart. This will help reduce swelling.
- Put ice or a cold pack on the area for 10 to 20 minutes at a time. Try to do this every 1 to 2 hours for the next 3 days (when you are awake) or until the swelling goes down. Put a thin cloth between the ice and your skin.
When should you call for help?
Call your doctor now or seek immediate medical care if:
- You have problems with your splint. For example:
- The skin under the splint is burning or stinging.
- The splint feels too tight.
- There is a lot of swelling near the splint. (Some swelling is normal.)
- You have a new fever.
- There is drainage or a bad smell coming from the splint.
- You cannot move the injured area.
- You have new or worse pain in the injured area.
- You have tingling, weakness, or numbness in the injured area.
- The injured area turns cold or changes color.
Watch closely for changes in your health, and be sure to contact your doctor if:
- You are having problems with your splint.
- You do not get better as expected.
Where can you learn more?
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