Rare, Acute Injury Prone to Fracture

LARAMIE, Wyo. (May 16, 2012) – One of the eight small bones in the wrist, the scaphoid bone, is easily identified when the thumb is held in a hitchhiking position. Due to the scaphoid bone’s placement, it is at extra risk for injury and is the most commonly fractured carpal bone in the wrist.

A scaphoid fracture commonly results from a fall on the outstretched arm. A common symptom of this type of fracture involves pain when trying to grip or move the thumb and wrist.

As a result of little swelling or bruising, most people mistake this injury for a sprain, leading to a delay in treatment. Conservative treatment may include wearing a cast or brace for several weeks; however, if the fracture is severe, surgical treatment may be recommended after all other nonsurgical options have been explored.

Dr. Mark McKenna is an orthopedic surgeon at Premier Bone & Joint Centers and specializes in injuries and conditions of the hand, elbow and shoulder. With his experience in treating scaphoid fractures, Dr. McKenna explains, “The severity of this type of fracture has a significant impact on whether surgery is necessary. In cases where patients need surgery, the procedure performed is aimed at limiting stiffness and sustaining the most flexibility the wrist had prior to the injury.”

Recently, Dr. McKenna treated Rock Springs resident, Shannon Guffey, 27, following a motorcycle accident that led to a scaphoid fracture in Guffey’s right wrist as he tried to brace himself while falling. Due to the severity of Guffey’s injury, Dr. McKenna treated his injury surgically, inserting a screw into the wrist bone and pinning the rest of the joints back together. Guffey has since returned to work and his everyday activities without the risk of long-term stiffness.

For more information on scaphoid fractures or hand and wrist treatment, contact the specialists atPremier Bone & Joint Centers by calling (307) 745-8851.

Premier Bone & Joint Centers is the only orthopedic practice to offer comprehensive and specialized bone, joint and muscle care to one of the largest geographical regions in the United States. Serving the state of Wyoming, Western Nebraska, and regions of Colorado and South Dakota, the practice’s 10 orthopedic and interventional specialists are highly trained and experienced in the following areas: spine, shoulder and elbow, hand and wrist, hip and knee, foot and ankle, sports medicine,interventional pain management and total joint replacements. For more information on Premier Bone & Joint Centers and its physicians, visit www.PremierBoneandJoint.com.