Distal radius the most common type of wrist fracture

A fracture of the distal radius refers to a break in the larger of the two arm bones that connect the hand to the elbow. This type of “broken wrist” happens closest to the hand. It is a common fracture and can easily occur from a fall. When the wrist is broken with the fingers extending back towards the wrist, it’s called a Colles fracture. If the wrist is broken with the fingers and hand bent forward, it’s called a Smith fracture.

ORIFF/CRPP—surgical and non-surgical approaches to resetting bones

Depending on the nature of the fracture, the bones may be repositioned surgically or without surgery. Open reduction internal fixation (ORIF) involves a surgical approach to “reducing” or resetting the bones. This procedure requires general anesthesia (you’ll be asleep and won’t feel anything) while the orthopedic surgeon surgically positions the bones and uses surgical implants such as metal screws or plates to hold the bones in place.

Closed reduction percutaneous pinning (CRPP) is a “closed” or non-surgical approach that requires only a small incision and the use of fluoroscopic guidance for the doctor to move the bone into place and position it with a pin.

Diagnosis and treatment approach to distal radius fractures

Before determining what treatment is best for your type of fracture, your doctor will order various diagnostic tests, such as an X-ray and possibly a CT scan to assess surrounding ligaments.

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