Department of hand surgery & Microsurgery.

Distal Radius fracture

What Is Radius Fracture ?

Two bones constitute our forearm; namely radius and ulna. Fractures of the radius bone around the wrist are known as distal radius fractures. They are the most common fracture in the upper limb. Colle’s fracture, Volar Barton fracture and Smith’s fracture are different types of distal radius fractures.

How Radius Fracture Occurs ?

You May Be At Higher Risk Of A Broken Bone In Your Hand And Wrist If You Participate In Sports, Involve In Motor Vehicle Accident Or If You Have A Condition In Which Bones Become Thinner And More Fragile (Osteoporosis). This Fracture Occurs When A Person Fall On Outstretched Hands.


It’s important to treat a broken bone as soon as possible. Otherwise, the bones might not heal in proper alignment, which might affect your ability to do everyday activities, such as writing or buttoning a shirt. Early treatment will also help minimize pain and stiffness.

If the broken ends of the bone aren’t aligned properly, there can be gaps between the pieces of bone or fragments might overlap. Your doctor will need to manipulate the pieces back into position, a procedure known as a reduction. Depending on the amount of pain and swelling you have, you might need a local or general anesthetic before this procedure. Whatever your treatment, it’s important to move your uninjured fingers regularly while the fracture is healing to keep them from stiffening. Ask your doctor about the best ways to move them.


Restricting the movement of a broken bone in your hand and wrist is critical to proper healing. To do this, you’ll likely need a splint or a cast. You’ll be advised to keep your hand above your elbow as much as possible to reduce swelling and pain.

Surgical and other procedures

Even after reduction and immobilization with a cast or splint, your bones can shift. So your doctor will likely monitor your progress with X-rays. If your bones move, you might then need surgery, which can take the forms of:

  • Closed reduction and pinning. Fracture will be aligned and temporarily held by pins until the fracture has healed after which the pins are removed.
  • External fixation of the wrist. Metal frame outside your body immobilizes the fracture with two or more pins that pass through your skin and into the bone on either side of the fracture. This will be removed once the fracture has healed.
  • Open reduction and internal fixation. You might need surgery to implant pins, plates, rods, or screws to hold your bones in place while they heal. A bone graft might be used to help healing.

These options might be necessary if you have:

  • An open fracture
  • A fracture in which the bone pieces move before they heal
  • Loose bone fragments that could enter a joint
  • Damage to the surrounding ligaments, nerves, or blood vessels
  • Fractures that extend into a joint

To reduce pain, your doctor might recommend NSAIDs to reduce pain and swelling. If you have an open fracture, in which you have a wound or break in the skin near the wound site, you’ll likely be given an antibiotic to prevent infection that could reach the bone.

Hand therapy

After your cast or splint is removed, you’ll likely need rehabilitation exercises or hand therapy to reduce stiffness and restore movement in your wrist. Rehabilitation can help, but it can take several months or longer for complete healing.