This is what you need to know when your little one suffers a broken bone.
1. Where is the break?
Collarbone (clavicle) fractures are the most common, but other types of fractures do happen. Make sure to ask where the break is.
2. Does my child need immediate treatment?
Clavicle fractures generally don’t require any treatment, but your doctor may ask you to immobilize the baby’s arm for a few weeks. More serious breaks may require setting and casting.
3. What problems should I watch out for?
Ask your doctor what you should be looking for – redness, swelling, and fever can be signs of infection and require medical attention. Your doctor can also give you a list of signs that may indicate that the break isn’t healing properly.
4. What care do I need to do at home?
If the baby’s collarbone is broken, you’ll generally just need to be extra gentle and support the arm. Other breaks may require more intensive care.
5. Will my child need physical therapy?
If the break is serious, your little one may need physical therapy to ensure that the bone and surrounding muscles heal properly. Ask your doctor if therapy will be necessary. You can also ask for a recommendation for a pediatric physical therapist.
6. How did this break happen?
If the fracture was caused by an unusual birth position, macrosomia (high birth weight), or certain other issues, the same problems may arise in future pregnancies. Some bone fractures are caused by medical mistakes, in which case you may want to pursue legal action for compensation for your medical expenses and your baby’s pain and suffering.