What is a scaphoid fracture?
There are eight small bones within the wrist. A commonly broken bone is the scaphoid bone, which is shaped like a kidney bean and can be tricky to heal.
What are the symptoms of a scaphoid fracture?
Pain and/or swelling along the thumb side of the wrist within days following a fall.
How is a scaphoid fracture diagnosed?
Your consultant hand and wrist surgeon will usually diagnose a scaphoid fracture by good clinical examination, high index of suspicion, x-ray of the wrist. Sometimes x-rays can be reported as normal so continued symptoms require an urgent MRI scan, which is the gold standard.
How is a scaphoid fracture treated?
Early identification and cast treatment can lead to good results in 85% of fractures at the waist (middle) of the bone.
Presenting late, smoking and fractures close to the radius (proximal pole fractures) have a higher incidence of not healing (non-union).
Sometimes, if left untreated chronic injury can lead to arthritis of the wrist.