What Is A Malunion Fracture?
When you have had a bone fracture, your bone might be broken into parts. The broken bones are realigned to allow healing. However, bones have the ability of self-healing. With the help of various surgical procedures, the bony ends are realigned in a position.
The problem arises in the realignment. If the bony ends of the broken bone are not aligned properly, then the bone heals in the wrong direction. This deformity is called a malunion. Sometimes even if the bony ends are adequately realigned, they move aside due to strenuous activities; hence they heal in the wrong direction.
How Does A Malunion Fracture Look Like?
A malunion fracture happens when the space between the displaced bony ends is filled with new bone growth. As a result, the bone may become shorter, twisted, rotated, or bent irregularly. More than one of these malformations can occur in malunion fractures. Malunions commonly happen in the area of the tibia bone (shin bone) and the forearm.
Why A Malunion Occur?
A malunion can occur both in children and adults of any gender. In adults, it happens due to lack of immobilization of the cast, early weight-bearing, or ineffective internal or external fixation of the fracture. In children, it occurs due to damage to growth plates during trauma. Overgrowth of the bones during healing can result in limb length problems or angulation deformities.
Can a Malunion get fixed?
Yes, most of the malunion fractures are treatable. Often the treatment depends on the severity of the deformity and how the injury occurred. If a malunion causes disfigurement, then surgery is required to correct it. Fixing the broken bone’s alignment is essential if the deformity creates excess stress on a joint attached to that bone.
How do I know If I have a malunion?One will experience precise signs and symptoms that indicate that you have a malunion. The signs of a malunion fracture include persistent pain even after your fracture is healed. Reduced functional abilities and it looks bent in the wrong direction.
Can a Malunion fracture correct without surgery?
Not all malunions require surgery. Surgery or treatment is an option in some cases of malunion fractures if there are no functional disabilities from the injury. However, if the malunion fracture causes functional problems, then surgical intervention may be necessary to fix it and return to your healthy lifestyle.
Will a displaced bone heal on its own?
Sometimes, the displaced broken bones will heal straight over time. But in most cases, the displaced bones need to be appropriately aligned before the cast, splint, or a brace is set on. It is called a reduction or “setting the bone.”
Why does bone healing slow down?
Many factors affect the healing process of bone. These include the movement of broken bone fragments, excessive weight, smoking, and drinking, which restricts the blood vessels and reduces blood flow. All these factors can directly affect your bone healing after a fracture.
In contrast, if you maintain a diet rich in nutrients like dairy products, vegetables, cod liver oil, eggs, and calcium-rich supplements, it can boost your bone health and speed the healing process.
Can we straighten the broken bones?
No, never try to straighten your broken bones while healing. In case of a limb fracture, place a pillow under your lower leg or forearm for support and comfort. If you do so, the alignment of the bone ends get disturbed, and this unnecessary movement might heal it in the wrong direction, causing a malunion.
How is a malunion fracture treated?
In most scenarios, surgery is the only option to solve the problem. Osteotomy is the standard orthopaedic surgical procedure to realign the bones with improper healing. An orthopaedic surgeon performs osteotomy, and the process involves either shortening or lengthening of the bone and re-setting the bone in the precise anatomical and functional position.
What happens if you don’t get a broken bone fixed?
If your broken bone doesn’t receive proper treatment, it may lead to a severe infection or causes long-term joint problems or ends up in a permanent deformity. To avoid these problems, broken bones need to be appropriately aligned and held in place with a cast, so that it heals in the correct position.
Why choose Dr Vasudeva Juvvadi to treat a malunion?
Dr Vasudeva Juvvadi takes his time to understand the problem and explains all the options to customize the treatment plan. He can treat patients suffering from malunions of any severity. He is a renowned orthopaedic surgeon in Hyderabad, having more than ten years of experience. He gives the best effort to treat patients with malunions and obtain the best possible results.
For more information about malunion treatment, nonunion treatment, and fractures treatment, consult Dr Vasudeva Juvvadi, consultant orthopaedic surgeon at Sunshine Hospitals, Hyderabad. Don’t live with a deformity when it can be fixed. Get it fixed to possible extremity and live a better quality of life.