Trauma in an Arvada car accident can lead to a tibia (shinbone) fracture. Other soft tissue injuries – ligaments, nerves and muscles or a fibula fracture – can accompany the injury. Although it’s not a life-threatening injury, depending on the severity it could lead to long-term disability.
Common Types of Tibia Fractures
Bones can break in many different ways. The more force placed on it, the more severe the fracture. This impacts not only treatment but recovery and prognosis.
The following are types of tibia fractures according to the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons (AAOS):
- oblique – break is at an angle, making the bone unstable;
- stable – bones are aligned and typically stay in place while healing;
- displaced – bones aren’t aligned and usually requires surgery;
- spiral – fracture line is shaped like a spiral and can be stable or displaced;
- open – bone breaks through the skin, increasing risk of complications and taking longer to heal;
- transverse – fracture line is horizontal and typically unstable; and
- comminuted – bone shatters into more than two pieces.
Treatment for a Tibia Fracture
When surgery isn’t necessary, some type of support or splint may be placed on the leg for a few weeks while the swelling goes down, notes the AAOS. From there, other forms of supportive devices, like a cast or brace, may be required.
When the fracture is severe or not healing properly, surgery may be necessary. Internal rods and screws may be necessary to stabilize the fracture as it heals, though in rare cases an external stabilizing mechanism may be necessary.
Prognosis of a Broken Shin Bone and How It May Impact an Accident Claim
The prognosis depends on how severe the fracture is and the type of treatment. Those put in a cast will have to wear it for a few weeks and then a brace for a few more. With surgery, the recovery is typically longer, sometimes months.
Part of the recovery process will include physical therapy. But during this time it’s usually necessary to use crutches or another assistive device for support while walking. If the patient suffers complications, this will impact the prognosis.
Some potential complications include:
- nerve or vascular injury;
- infection; and
- blood clots.
Open tibial shaft fractures are particularly associated with high risk of complications. Of course, these complications will only prolong recovery. A car accident claim may not only address the medical costs associated with the fracture but the amount of time the person is disabled by the injury.
It may include compensation for lost wages while unable to work. There may also be damages that address suffering a long-term disability such as emotional distress, pain and suffering, and more.
It’s important to make sure a claim adequately addressed all losses, so set up a consultation with D.J. Banovitz if you were in a car accident in Arvada for which another party is at fault. Call 303-300-5060 to schedule your free consultation, and be sure to read our free guide, Seven Costly Mistakes That Can Ruin Your Colorado Injury Case.