This is a type of orthopedic surgery that involves the repositioning of bone fragments. The fragments are then held together with special screws, metal plates or rods. It is most often used for shattered bones and severe fractures.
This procedure involves the use of a stabilizing frame to hold the bone fragments together. The orthopedic surgeon will put pins or screws around the broken bone. After that, the broken bone will be repositioned. Eventually the external fixation device is removed, but sometimes it may also require an internal fixation procedure as described above.
With this treatment option, the orthopedic surgeon will align the broken bone by using a pulling force applied through the use of skin tapes or a metal pin. Sometimes this is used as a first step to align the bones before another type of treatment is sought.
The fracture can’t heal if it’s not kept in place. These devices allow the broken bone to stay in one place so it can heal. Based on your injury, your orthopedic doctor will determine how long you will need one of these devices and if it can be removed for special circumstances, like bathing or exercising.
These devices help provide mobility support so you don’t have to put all of your body weight on the broken bone. Depending on where the fracture occurred, you may have to use a walker, cane or pair of crutches to help you get around until the bone can bear weight.