Should You Go To The ER For a Broken Bone?

A broken bone can happen at any moment and be caused by a variety of reasons. Factors like where on the body the break occurs, and the type or severity of the break are all important when determining if you need to go to the emergency room for a broken bone.

While the common thought is that broken bones in the hand, wrist, ankle, or foot can be treated in an urgent care setting, depending on the severity, they may actually require a trip to the emergency room. At iCare ER & Urgent Care, with locations in Frisco and Fort Worth, TX, our emergency room is open 24/7 and staffed with board-certified emergency room physicians. Our top-notch team of doctors can determine the extent of your acute injury, and if you have, in fact, broken a bone, or if it’s just a dislocation or sprain.

Types of broken bones

A broken bone, also referred to as a fracture, is typically a result of direct force or trauma. In some cases, diseases like osteoporosis may cause the bones to be brittle and easily broken.

Fractures can occur almost anywhere on the body. Some are very mild and can be repaired without any medical intervention. Other breaks are very serious, and may even be life-threatening if they cause internal bleeding or puncture a vital internal organ. Those are the breaks that should be seen in an emergency room near you, like iCare ER & Urgent Care.

Regardless of the cause of the break, bone fractures fall into two categories:

  • Compound or open fracture: The broken bone protrudes from or through the skin, exposing underlying tissues and bones.

  • Simple or closed fracture: This fracture does not break through the skin and can sometimes be challenging to diagnose without digital imaging, such as an X-ray.

Signs and symptoms of a broken bone

The most obvious symptoms of a broken bone are pain, swelling, bruising, and a possible misalignment or deformity. However, there are other more serious signs and symptoms associated with a broken bone that warrant an immediate trip to the emergency room for treatment, versus urgent care. These include:

  • bone protruding from the skin

  • other injuries accompanying the fracture

  • numbness at trauma site

  • excessive bleeding

  • restricted movement if the break occurs at or near a joint

  • patient feels faint or loses consciousness

If a bone break occurs in the ribs, spine/lumbar area, skull, pelvis, hips, or face, go to the ER for treatment. The sooner a patient is seen by a board-certified emergency room physician and the extent of the fracture is determined, the slighter the possibility is of the injury worsening.

How is a fracture treated in the ER?

At iCare ER & Urgent Care, in either Frisco or Fort Worth, TX, you will be seen by a board-certified emergency room physician. Our experienced team will quickly evaluate the area where the break occurred and determine the best course of treatment. Pain management control is almost always addressed and treated from the start.

iCare ER & Urgent Care is fully equipped with state-of-the-art tools and technology to treat patients in a manner similar to a hospital emergency room. X-rays will most likely be taken to examine the broken bone further. Depending on the type and severity, the fracture may be treated with a splint, cast, or sling. An orthopedic boot, crutches, or a cane may also be needed. Pain medication can be prescribed as well.

Unfortunately, some broken bones may require further care that could include surgery or a hospital stay. In such cases, the professional staff at iCare ER & Urgent Care can make arrangements to transfer patients to another medical facility or make referrals to specialists for further treatment.

Get emergency room caliber care for a broken bone at iCare ER & Urgent Care

At iCare ER & Urgent Care, our locations in Frisco and Fort Worth, TX feature a unique “hybrid” model, with both emergency room facilities and urgent care services in the same building. Our board-certified emergency room physicians are highly-qualified and exceptionally trained to swiftly and efficiently handle level 3 emergencies, like broken bones. When it comes to the need for emergency room treatment for a broken bone in Frisco or Fort Worth, TX, do not delay and drive to iCare ER & Urgent Care right away.