Peter Hibberd, M.D., is a doctor whose advice is based on more than 28 years of hospital outpatient and inpatient experience. He is an experienced emergency medicine physician, surgeon, and consultant. Dr. Hibberd is certified by the American Board of Emergency Medicine. He is also a fellow and active member of the American Academy of Family Physicians, an active member of the American College of Emergency Physicians, and a member and fellow of the American Academy of Emergency Medicine. Dr. Hibberd has earned numerous national and international professional certifications, memberships, and awards.

What Helps Heal Bones?

Friday, 03 September 2010 09:12 AM

Question: What helps to heal bones after orthopedic surgery?

Dr. Hibberd's Answer:

After orthopedic surgery, bone is usually fixed in place. Be sure to have an adequate amount of calcium and vitamin D to enhance the formation of new bone matrix while the immobilized bone heals.

Fixation of the fracture or prosthesis is accomplished through various combinations of glue, bone graft, plates, screws, and prosthetic replacement parts, and occasionally with parts from human cadaver donors. Often these operative sites may require casting or splinting after surgery until the areas have formed sufficient new bone to be stable.

When a cast is used, it usually stays in place from four to six weeks, and even longer depending on the rate of healing and new bone formation at the fracture site(s).
Once the site is healed, physical therapy is always recommended so bone and joint tissue can return to their normal function without excessive stress after surgery and immobility.

Regular physical activity and joint motion help preserve bone and joint structure integrity.
As a case in point, in complex fractures that involve joints, especially in children, the best treatment may involve a combination of setting the fracture combined with continuous passive movement therapy for the most function and the least disability.

© HealthDay

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