Fractures are common injuries sustained in motorcycle injuries. Although they can be very painful, most are easily treated. Fractures can range from simple, uncomplicated fractures requiring a cast until healing has occurred to severe fractures requiring surgery for stabilization.
Due to the lack of protection surrounding the cyclist, fractures are common when a cycle accident occurs. Colliding with another vehicle, the pavement or other unyielding surfaces can result in severe fractures. Cyclists may sustain a single fracture or multiple fractures. Some fractures are more serious than others and are more likely to cause complications and prolonged disability.
Types of Fractures
• Closed fracture- the bone is broken but does not exit the skin
• Open (compound) fracture- the fractured bone extends through the skin, or the skin is broken by a hard blow which breaks the bone. This type of fracture is at risk of becoming infected.
• Comminuted fracture- the bone is broken into three or more pieces or fragments
• Greenstick fracture- only one side of the bone breaks; the other side of the bone is bent (more common in children)
• Transverse fracture- the break occurs at right angles to the bone’s long axis
Treatment of fractures
• External fixation- a cast, splint or other immobilizing device is used to hold the bone in correct alignment until the bone has healed
• Internal fixation- surgery to affix plates, screws or pins may be required to hold the bone together in proper alignment for more severe fractures
Recovery from Fracture
A fracture may take weeks or months to heal. Once the bones are aligned correctly, the pain usually diminishes, but before the fracture is reduced pain can be severe. Muscles of the affected limb often become weak from disuse when a limb is immobilized for a period of time, so physiotherapy may be needed for a period of time after healing has occurred.
Implications for the Victim
A fracture can mean a prolonged recuperation and an inability to work. This can cause financial hardship for individuals suffering a fracture as a result of a cycle accident. Medical and hospital bills can be expensive. In addition, the individual may need help at home during the recovery period. Rehabilitation costs can also be high. Complications (including infection, blood clots, pneumonia, malunion, joint stiffness and arthritis and deformity) may complicate recovery and leave the victim with chronic pain and/or deformity.
If you have suffered a fracture in a cycle accident, it is a good idea to contact an attorney experienced in cycle law. A motorcycle law attorney has the necessary knowledge to investigate the accident, assist you with filing insurance claims and can advise you of your rights. Should a trial become necessary, your motorcycle attorney has the skills needed to file your case, negotiate a settlement or take your case to trial should that become necessary. Don’t wait- the sooner you contact us, the sooner we can help you begin to rebuild your life.