Legal Advice After a Bone Fracture or Joint Injury
Orthopedic injuries, including bone fractures and joint injuries, can be painful and debilitating, robbing a victim of his or her quality of life and forcing many to miss work. Injury victims need comprehensive medical treatment, time off from work, and often a full-time caregiver. If you have suffered an orthopedic injury because of someone’s carelessness or negligence, contact attorney J. Todd Tenge and the Tenge Law Firm, LLC, serving Boulder, Fort Collins, Denver, and surrounding Colorado towns, to schedule a free confidential consultation.
About Orthopedic Injuries
Common orthopedic injuries include fractures in the foot, ankle, hip, knee, leg, shoulder, elbow, arm, spinal cord, neck, hand, or wrist. Fractures are usually caused by trauma to the bone, either from playing a contact sport, falling, using a dangerous or defective product, or getting into a motorcycle, truck, or car accident. The severity of an orthopedic injury can range from a bit of swelling and tenderness to muscle, tendon, or ligament tears, joint sprains, or even compound, open fractures where the fractured bone actually punctures the skin. Most orthopedic injuries are diagnosed with X-rays, MRIs, or CT scans, and through physical examination.
Here are some different types of bone breaks:
- Stable fracture – In a stable fracture, the bone has not moved or impacted itself or been crushed. These are the more common types of breaks, and typically only require a cast to heal depending on the bone.
- Open/compound fracture – In open/compound fractures, bone is sticking through the skin. Treatment may include surgical and non-surgical methods depending on severity of injury, and the victim’s age and activity level.
- Transverse fracture – A transverse fracture occurs when the bone is broken in a crack that is perpendicular to the way the bone runs. Fractures such as these typically result from a direct blow, but can also sometimes occur when people do things repetitively, such as running.
- Oblique fracture – With an oblique fracture, the bone breaks at an angle, diagonally. Oblique fractures normally occur in the longer bones of the body like the femur or tibia. A forceful twisting motion of the feet or fingers of the hand may also result in an oblique fracture.
- Comminuted fracture – A comminuted fracture is one in which the bone is broken into several pieces. At least three separate pieces of bone must be present for a fracture to be classified as comminuted. Since considerable force and energy is required to fragment bone, fractures of this category occur after high-impact trauma such as in auto accidents.
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Treatments for Fractures
The method that is best to help an individual heal depends entirely on the location and severity of the fracture. These treatments can range from simple rest to surgery to repair the damage. Commonplace orthopedic injury treatments include:
- Immobilization – The most common treatment for orthopedic injuries is immobilization. This is typically done with a cast, but splints, braces, and slings are also used help fractures heal. Fractures treated with immobilization must be adequately aligned to allow for the bone to heal in the proper manner.
- Resetting (reducing) the broken bone – Performed by either administering local anesthetic to the broken bone or a general anesthesia to the patient, followed by a specific action to attempt to realign the broken bone. After a bone resetting, a splint or cast would be applied to hold the bones in the improved alignment and allowed to heal in the correct manner.
- Traction – Traction is an older treatment that involves the tender pulling of the extremity to align the bones. Typically, a metal pin is placed in the bone on the far side of the fracture. Traction done in this manner is called skeletal traction. Weights and ropes are attached to the pin to gently pull the bone fragments into alignment.
- Pins – Pins are often used to secure smaller bones (hands, wrist, foot) when a closed reduction can be used to improve alignment, but a cast is not enough to hold the bones in place.
- Intramedullary Rodding – Intramedullary (IM) rodding is a surgical operation used to stabilize a broken bone by inserting a metal rod in the hollow medullary canal of the damaged bone. This interior canal part of the bone (where the bone marrow is) can be used to hold the rod and allow for early movement and weight-bearing. IM rodding is often the preferred treatment for fractures of the lower extremity – long bones that are not close to the joints.
Regardless of the treatment you receive for your orthopedic injuries, lots of rest and down time is required to heal in the correct manner. This can lead to missed work, lost wages, loss of enjoyment of physical activities, and more. If an orthopedic injury has put a dent in your everyday life, you may be intitled to compensation.
Repetitive Stress Injuries
Repetitive stress injuries result from performing the same motion over and over again, putting excessive strain on a particular part of the body. An example of a repetitive stress injury (RSI) is carpal tunnel syndrome, which is a common occupational injury among employees who spend a lot of time typing on computer keyboards. Symptoms of RSIs include pain and swelling, which are signals of inflammation, muscle strain, or tissue damage. If you developed an RSI on the job, you may be entitled to recover damages to pay for your medical bills to treat the injury, pain and suffering, lost wages, and impairment. The Tenge Law Firm, LLC can help you determine whether you have a valid claim. If we agree to handle your case, we will aggressively pursue justice for you.
Why Do I Need an Attorney?
If another person is at fault for your injury – a medical professional or an employer, for example – then you have the right to file a personal injury claim against that person and possibly recover financial damages for any expenses incurred during treatment and recovery. This includes compensation for your medical treatment and rehabilitation bills, pain and suffering, any physical impairment, and lost wages.
Contact an Orthopedic Injury Attorney in Denver, CO
If you have suffered an orthopedic injury because of someone’s carelessness, attorney J. Todd Tenge and his skilled and experienced team, will recover financial compensation to cover your medical bills, pain and suffering, and any other losses. Contact the Tenge Law Firm, LLC, serving Boulder, Fort Collins, Denver, and surrounding Colorado areas, to speak with our orthopedic injury attorney today at (303) 502-5587.