What Causes Forearm Fractures?

Forearm fractures are a common injury and a common reason to see a hand specialist. This type of injury can happen for many different reasons, but in any case, it’s important to see an orthopedic hand specialist sooner rather than later. If you fracture your forearm, our team can help you explore your best treatment options and ensure you maintain full function of your hands and wrists. Here are some of the most common ways that forearm fractures occur and why they happen.

What is a Forearm Fracture?

A forearm fracture is what most people think of when they hear the term “broken arm.” There are two bones in your forearm called the radius and ulna – they normally flex and twist to allow you to move your hand and wrist. Fractures and breaks can occur at any point along the forearm but most commonly occur near the wrist or elbow, depending on the type of injury.

What Causes Forearm Fractures?

Forearm fractures are one of the more common injuries in the hand and upper extremity. There are a variety of causes and each requires the expertise of a hand specialist.

Slips and Falls

One of the most common types of injury is falling. Although it can happen to someone of any age, falls are more common in older people. Falls can happen because of medical conditions or because of slipping on a surface like ice or water. When you fall, your instinct is to put your hand out to catch yourself and lessen the impact. Unfortunately, this can cause sudden and significant pressure on the bones of the forearm, sometimes fracturing them. Falls can also cause similar injuries like hand or wrist fractures for the same reasons.

Sports Injuries

Sports injuries are a common cause of many different hand and upper extremity conditions, and forearm fractures are one of them. A forearm fracture might occur because of a direct blow to the forearm or wrist, as is common in contact sports such as football, wrestling, or martial arts. Additionally, falls can occur that cause the forearm to break. In professional football, forearm fractures are one of the most common upper extremity injuries that require surgical correction.

Car and Motorcycle Accidents

Even mild car or motorcycle accidents can cause fractures to the hands and upper extremities. This is usually the case because your reaction is to brace yourself for an impact. A forearm fracture may occur during a car accident because of airbag deployment or the impact itself. Forearm fractures from motorcycle accidents may occur during impact or while falling over.

Schedule an Appointment

If you’ve experienced a forearm fracture, your first step is meeting with our knowledgeable hand specialists to get a diagnosis and discuss your next steps. To schedule an appointment at the Regional Hand Center, contact our Fresno and Visalia offices by calling or filling out our online form.

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