Chartered Physiotherapists

Specialists in Musculoskeletal Physiotherapy

Broken Wrist

In the medical profession a ‘Broken wrist’ is referred to as a Colles Fracture or Distal Radius Fracture. It is the most common type of upper limb fracture accounting for one out of every ten reported fractures. Broken wrists are more common in contact sports such as rugby and American football, or in high speed sports such as downhill skiing and biking. Elderly people with osteoporosis (weakened bones) are also at high risk of wrist fractures if they fall on an outstretched hand.

Symptoms & Treatment

Those who sustain a broken wrist will experience severe pain, marked swelling and bruising and there will be an inability to move or bear weight through the involved limb. Once a break or fracture is confirmed by imaging depending on the severity of the break the orthopaedic specialist may have to stabilise the fracture site with metal pins before immobilising the wrist in a plaster cast or brace. The wrist joint will be immobilised for a period of at least 8 weeks after which physiotherapy treatment will commence.

Physiotherapy Treatment

The goal of physiotherapy treatment following the removal of the cast or brace is to help regain lost mobility and strength in the wrist and restore pain free function. Due to the injury and long period of immobilisation the wrist joint will be stiff and the muscles that support the wrist will be weakened because that have not been used for so long. Our Chartered Physiotherapists through a combinations joint mobilisation, massage and exercise will help you regain full pain free function.

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