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A fracture setting is performed after a bone is broken and involves putting the bone fragments back in correct alignment. There are two types of fracture setting procedures: closed reduction and open reduction. Closed reduction does not involve surgery and is usually performed when a bone is broken in one place. An open reduction procedure involves a surgical incision and is typically performed when there are multiple breaks in the bone, or the bone has shattered into several small pieces.
Reasons for a fracture setting
A fracture setting is performed to properly align a broken bone so that it can heal properly. Setting a fracture is important in preventing a deformity that could occur if the bones are left to heal on their own where they may not be properly aligned. It can also help alleviate pain associated with the break and allow the individual to regain use of that part of the body.
How a fracture setting is performed?
A fracture setting is performed through either an open reduction procedure or a closed reduction procedure. A closed reduction is usually attempted first, but an open reduction may be necessary if there are multiple breaks in the bone or if a closed reduction is not possible due to a wound.
During a closed reduction procedure, the doctor will apply traction to lengthen the muscles near the fracture and then manipulate the bone fragments into proper alignment either strictly by feel or by using an imaging machine called a fluoroscope. A splint or cast must then be worn to hold the bone fragments in place and prevent them from moving while they heal.
An open reduction is a surgical procedure in which an incision must be made in order to access the bone fragments and align them properly. Plates, rods, and screws are then used to hold the bone fragments in place.
It typically takes at least three to six weeks for a bone to heal following a fracture setting.