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Prevention of Child Fractures in Spring

Feng XIE, Chief Pediatric Orthopedic Surgeon, Chair of Orthopedic Surgery

What activities need attention?

Common causes of fracture

Injury during a spring tour

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In spring, the ground is covered in grass and is usually uneven and hard, which increase the risk of people twisting their ankles.

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During winter, people engage in just a few activities. Suddenly, everyone becomes active in spring and this could lead to cramps and muscle soreness, especially in teenagers .

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Too much walking can aggravate the end of long bones and cause growth pains.

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As families go on their spring trips, any traffic mishaps could greatly injure infants. Therefore, a baby seat should be properly used inside one’s car.

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Below are some injuries or accidents that typically occur in spring 

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Flying a kite

By just staring at a flying kite, people could fall or get bruised

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Dog bite

In spring, animals are oestrous and aggressive, and would want to bite more often, but usually  such bites do not injure the bone. When a bite, wound or cut will expose one’s bone, further exploration is needed and thorough debridement icould be necessary.

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Skateboard, dry ice, trampoline

Because of the warmer weather in spring, people wear less clothing, so the limbs are more easily injured. Children must wear protective gears before playing or engaging sports.

If a child is injured, how could one get a fracture diagnosis? In which occasion, should parents  seek emergency care?

——Assessment of fracture

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Crying

Refusal to move

Local swelling

Obvious tenderness

The more the conditions above are observable, the worse the fracture is.

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Limb or joint deformity

A blue, pale, or obvious swelling of the distal extremities.

Active bleeding or exposed bone

All of the above should be treated in the hospital as soon as possible, even if there is no fracture.

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If a fracture occurs, how do you help the child and give First Aid treatment?

——First Aid for fractures

Call for help. Call 120 First Aid and try to bring the baby to the hospital in the shortest time.

Closely observe the condition of the baby. If his/her face turns pale, or if there is cold sweat or weak pulse due to excessive bleeding (haemorrhagic shock or nerve shock), parents should put their baby’s head down and keep the body warm.

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How to stop bleeding after an injury or a fracture?

Bleeding should be stopped immediately. Before bringing the baby to the hospital, you can first use a clean towel to press on the wound.

If bleeding is more serious, you can use an elastic tube or rubber belt to fasten the fractured limbs. Relax the tourniquet every 30 minutes to prevent limb ischemia.

What you should not do when children suffer an injury or a fracture?

Parents should not spread medicine powder or other drugs on the wound, and not cover with unclean cloth. Use aseptic gauze or unused clean towels to cover the wound after haemostasis.

Keep the wound from being contaminated during the delivery. If the fracture ending or a bone fragment is exposed to the outside, parents should not move it. They should not attempt to put it back into the open wound.

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What the children could eat after a fracture or fracture operation?

——Nutrition of fracture

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A diet of high protein, less fat, plenty of vitamins, and rich calcium

For the diet of fractured children, high protein, less fat, sufficient vitamins and rich calcium should be guaranteed.

Daily protein intake should increase compared with what healthy children receive, especially for children with severe injuries, with large amount of bleeding and weak physical condition.

The food should be colourful, full of flavour and come in a variety, in order to promote the appetite of the children and help in guaranteeing early recovery.