Like the fracture of any other bone in your body, elbow fractures are also very common, but equally as painful. To get rid of elbow fractures and allow the elbow to function properly again, an ORIF surgery is recommended by elbow injury doctors. To find out what it is, keep on reading.
If you have been injured near or on your elbow before, then you might be familiar with elbow fracture ORIF surgery. ORIF stands for Open Reduction and Internal Fixation. This is a process most commonly done on elbow injuries. Elbow injuries are very complex because there are 3 bones involved in the injury. The radius, ulna and the humerus. The fusing of these three bones together to help fix a fracture is known as ORIF surgery. It is done to help mend the bones and help to heal them.
An elbow injury needs tending to 3 bones, which is why it is very intricate. This surgery is invasive and it usually involves a surgeon fusing your broken bones together. The bones are placed intact with special medical grade wires, screws and plates so that they don’t budge and the bones heal in the right place and that there is no abnormality. It can take a few hours for the bones to be fused together, considering the elbow is very small, but the complicated junction and the right placement of the bones is very necessary otherwise, the process can take a turn for the worse.
Why Do You Need An Elbow Fracture ORIF Surgery?
Here are some reasons why you need an elbow fracture ORIF surgery.
- You have fractured your elbow by falling on it.
- Your elbow bones are shattered.
- The fracture is too much and it has caused dislocation in your body.
- The bone has pierced through the skin.
- The bone is beyond normal repair and you need something external to hold it in place while the bones heal.
- The bone damage prevents you from feeling sensation on your arm. This can happen when the bones are squeezing your nerves and you need to have it checked out immediately otherwise things can become very complicated and neurological issues can take place along with orthopedic issues.
It is necessary to mention that not every elbow fracture needs to be fixed via an ORIF surgery. ORIF surgeries are carried out when the situation becomes out of hand for people. They lose sensation, they have pierced bones through their flesh, the fractures are affecting the muscle movement, etc. In these worse cases, you will need to go through an ORIF surgery.
How To Prepare For The Elbow Surgery Beforehand?
Once you know you are going through an ORIF surgery, the first thing a doctor will tell you to do is to quit smoking, consumption of alcohol and other blood thinning drugs some days prior to the operation. This can alter the surgery and the effects can be detrimental.
You will also be advised to take an appointment with an Anesthesiologist, because you will be put under during the surgery. Anesthesia needs to be suited with your body and blood pressure to avoid problems. An MRI or CT scan will also be done to make sure the placement of the injury is where it should be expected.
Risks Of Elbow Fracture ORIF Surgery
There are several risks associated with elbow fracture ORIF surgery. They are:
- The nerve damage could adhere and may never heal, if the fracture is diagnosed too late. The nerves will die and that area will be permanently damaged.
- The risk of infection is always a huge possibility with any invasive surgery.
- You might feel as though your joints are a lot more stiffer than usual. That is completely normal and you don’t need to worry about it. A little bit of light stretching and physical therapy should do the trick.
There you have it! Now you know everything there is to know about elbow fracture ORIF surgery. If you are someone who is suffering from severe elbow pain and fractures, then you can consider this option with the advice of an orthopedic elbow specialist McLean for pain relief and mending of the bone.