Wrist and Forearm Injuries Questions and Answers
If you or someone you love has wrist and forearm injuries, visit OrthoOIC Orthopedic Immediate Care. Our doctors and medical staff will provide immediate and comprehensive treatment to relieve pain. For more information call now to book an appointment online.
While wrist and forearm injuries are rarely severe enough to be considered a life-threatening medical emergency, they can have a significant limiting effect on our day-to-day lives. At OrthoOIC Orthopedic Immediate Care, we take wrist and forearm injuries seriously so that they do not have to keep you out of commission longer than necessary.
Why do my wrist and forearm hurt?
If your wrist and forearm are hurting, there is a broad range of reasons for why it might hurt, including acute injuries, overuse or repetitive strain injuries, or a musculoskeletal condition. If you recently experienced some form of physical trauma that involved your wrist or forearm, the pain is likely due to a sprain, fracture, or strain of one of the ligaments (sprain), bones (fracture), muscles, or tendons (strain). However, if you do not recall any specific injury, the reason for your wrist and forearm pain is more likely due to a musculoskeletal condition or an overuse or repetitive strain injury.
With that being said, some injuries or conditions that could be causing your wrist and forearm to hurt include the following:
- Carpal tunnel syndrome
- Dislocation, fracture, sprain, or strain in the forearm, hand, or wrist
- Radial tunnel syndrome
- Tendonitis in the forearm, hand, or wrist
How do I know if I tore a tendon in my forearm?
If you have torn or ruptured a tendon in your forearm, you will likely experience significant pain in addition to several other symptoms, such as the following:
- Deformity in the wrist or forearm
- Hear or feel a pop or snap at the moment of the injury
- Immediate or rapid bruising at the injury site
- Inability to use or move your arm
- Significant weakness in the forearm and wrist
What are the types of wrist injuries?
There are numerous types of wrist injuries, including acute injuries, chronic injuries, and repetitive strain or overuse injuries. With that in mind, some of the most common wrist injuries include the following:
- Anterior lunate dislocation
- Carpal tunnel syndrome
- De Quervain’s syndrome, also known as de Quervain’s disease or de Quervain’s tenosynovitis
- Extensor carpi ulnaris (ECU) tendonitis
- Fractures, such as Barton’s fracture, Chauffeur’s fracture, Colles’ fracture, Scaphoid fracture, and Smith’s fracture
- Perilunate dislocation
- Repetitive motion syndrome
- Thumb dislocation, fracture, sprain, or strain
- Triangular fibrocartilage complex injury
- Wrist sprains and strains
How long do forearm fractures take to heal?
The length of time it takes for a forearm fracture to heal ultimately depends on the fracture’s severity. There are two bones in the forearm that can experience a fracture, namely, the radius and the ulna bones. The radius is thicker than the ulna bone, but the ulna bone is longer than the radius bone. In a forearm fracture, either one or both bones can be fractured.
With that being said, a mild to moderate fracture in the forearm will likely take around four to eight weeks to heal when immobilized in a cast. Once the fracture has sufficiently recovered enough to remove the cast, rehabilitation or physical therapy may be required to restore strength, flexibility, and range of motion to the joints, bones, muscles, and tendons in the affected area.
With severe forearm fractures, in which the bone is broken in multiple places, is significantly displaced, or pierces through the skin, surgery will be required to repair the bone, which will result in a substantially longer healing process. Such fractures will likely take around three months to heal before physical therapy is provided to restore strength, flexibility, and range of motion to the injured area.
If you have suffered a wrist or forearm injury and are looking for high-quality treatment options, we welcome you to come to OrthoOIC Orthopedic Immediate Care. We serve patients from Arlington VA, Fairfax VA, Washington DC, Bethesda MD, Falls Church VA, Alexandria VA, and surrounding areas.