Winter brings us fun, snow, and a plethora of seasonal activities. However, with all of the unpredictability of the weather and the bitter cold come unexpected winter injuries. Winter dangers are usually avoidable, but the first step is to educate yourself as the temperature drops. The coldest months, like any other, present their own set of potential winter injuries. Winter has arrived, which means people should be extra cautious both inside and outside.
Major winter storms not only pose human health hazards and dangers, but they can also make getting to an emergency room more difficult due to icy roads. Cold weather forces people to make the necessary adjustments to adapt to their surroundings. Because many people do not spend a significant amount of time fighting these harsh conditions, their risk of injury may increase.
Reason why fractures occur in winter
Slips & falls during the winter
Iced surfaces are the most evident of the several wintertime circumstances that can pose a risk of falling. People are more likely to slip and fall on icy surfaces. Climbing ladders to hang Christmas decorations or falling from rooftops when hanging holiday lighting are additional falling hazards. Falls can result in bruising, fractured bones, concussions, sprained ankles, muscular strains, and head and brain damage. Fall-related injuries are more frequent in the winter, especially around the holidays.
Back injuries due to shoveling snow
Many people clear snow off their driveways during the snowier seasons to maintain access to their garages. Without employing proper form when shoveling snow, a person risks injuring their neck and back. These wounds may leave lasting scars and be rather dangerous. Use good form whenever you are doing any heavy lifting.
Major fractures which are prone in winters
Distal Radius Fracture
A specific kind of wrist fracture that affects the distal radius is known as a “Colles” fracture. This relatively common fracture happens when someone falls and hits an outstretched hand, frequently stopping the fall. Distal radial fractures can also happen after falling while snowboarding, skiing, or in other activities. This specific fracture type is rather typical and is frequently treated with a cast. These may typically be treated in our clinic with waterproof Goretex casting, allowing the cast to become wet during the therapeutic procedure. However, when appropriate alignment is required, certain Colles’ fracture patients necessitate surgical intervention.
Bennett’s fracture of the thumb, Skier’s thumb
An injury to the thumb’s base is known as a Bennett fracture. The joint where the thumb and wrist bones meet is affected by this kind of fracture. People who engage in hobbies like ice skating, skiing, and snowboarding are particularly vulnerable to sustaining a Bennett’s fracture as a result of a fall. Another frequent injury is skier’s thumb, which occurs when a skier extends their thumb too far and tears a ligament or fractures it. Bennett’s fracture or skier’s thumb patients typically need surgery to straighten the bones and stabilize the joint region. Surgery is often advised if the joint surface is out of alignment.
Wintertime is a popular time for injuries, such as hand fractures. Any hand or finger bone can develop these. Most hand fractures can be treated with the insertion of a straightforward waterproof cast, however in exceptional circumstances hand fractures may necessitate surgery. If there is joint injury, improper bone alignment, or unfavorable function is expected, surgery is advised. All hand, wrist, and finger fractures should be examined by an orthopedic expert. In order to hasten your rehabilitation, our hand specialists are glad to give your fracture top priority.
Scaphoid (Navicular) fracture
A fall onto an extended wrist results in a scaphoid (navicular) fracture, which results in chronic wrist pain at the base of the thumb. This might happen when engaging in wintertime outdoor activities or walking on ice. Due to the intricate blood supply of this bone, which regrettably can cause problems with healing, these fractures are sadly frequently misinterpreted as sprains. One of the eight significant wrist bones is this one. Often, surgery can help patients heal more quickly if their scaphoid bone has been shattered (fractured).
Wintertime injuries that are frequently encountered include fractured fingers. If not treated properly, finger fractures can have catastrophic implications. To guarantee that function of the hands and fingers is not restricted following the healing process, these injuries require the proper treatment. These fractures need to be evaluated by an experienced orthopaedic specialist in order to decide the best course of action. If the phalange bones (the finger bones) are not properly positioned, finger fractures may occasionally need surgery.
The most frequent fracture associated with twisting injuries in the winter is an ankle fracture. Broken ankles, which often involve injuries to the medial and lateral malleoli of the distal fibula, are among the most frequent fracture forms. These accidents happen when a fall or other form of accident damages the ankle bones. Ankle fractures frequently require surgery to achieve the right alignment during the healing phase. During the procedure, our orthopaedic specialists will align the structures of the ankle, and to achieve and preserve the alignment, the area will be cast.
A talus fracture happens when the foot’s talus bone breaks. One of the crucial bones that connect the leg to the foot is the talus bone. The ankle and the region of the back foot are connected to the talus bone via cartilage. Surgery is typically required for talus fractures, and sadly many patients have chronic ankle arthritis as a result.
A Jones fracture is a break in the foot’s fifth metatarsal. The lengthy bones that connect to the toes are called metatarsals. Patients who suffer a Jones type fracture frequently experience discomfort on the outside and middle portions of their feet. Athletes who snowboard, ski, or ice skate are all susceptible to this kind of fracture. Additionally typical are swelling and trouble walking. A waterproof cast is used to immobilize a patient with a Jones fracture. Our surgeons may advise surgery to speed up the healing process in fractures that heal slowly or in competitive athletes. When the fracture is not healing adequately, surgery may also involve bone grafting in addition to the typical screw placement.
The big bone in the heel is called the calcaneus. This bone is essential for a correct walking gait and supports the foot. Wintertime high-energy traumas frequently result in calcaneus fractures. These fractures are brought on by sports-related accidents or falls from a height. Depending on the degree of the fracture, these kinds of breaks might cause chronic foot discomfort, for which surgery may be necessary. In most cases, a cut is made on the outside of the foot, and the shattered heel bone is fixed with a metal plate and screws. Every effort is made by our orthopedic specialists to realign the bone and bring the cartilage surface back to its original position.
An injury to the midfoot joint might result in this kind of fracture or sprain. A Lisfranc fracture typically involves dislocation, which occurs when the midfoot joint and the forefoot area dislocate from one another. These fractures develop when a person takes an incorrect stride and twists their foot violently. Many people suffer a Lisfranc injury from falls on ice or from participating in outdoor sports. Surgery is usually required for Lisfranc fractures and dislocations, and casting is frequently used following. The orthopedic surgeon’s most typical course of action includes fixing the problem with internal screws or external pins.
In a nutshell
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