Carpal Fractures Clinical Presentation

Updated: Oct 29, 2015
  • Author: Robert R Schenck, MD; Chief Editor: Harris Gellman, MD  more...
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Presentation

History and Physical Examination

A complete history should be obtained from each patient being evaluated for a potential wrist injury. A thorough physical examination and extensive radiographic evaluation should be complemented by basic knowledge of wrist anatomy and common fracture patterns. This vastly improves the accuracy of the diagnosis and thereby directs the treatment of carpal fractures. [12, 13, 14, 15]

Once the diagnosis is established, the cardinal objective is to obtain and maintain normal anatomic alignment, because nonanatomic positioning may lead to functionally disabling results. Thereafter, treatment revolves around protective immobilization followed by thorough rehabilitation of the injured hand. These established principles provide clinical guidelines for the management of carpal injuries, and they are critical steps to a successful outcome in the treatment of carpal fractures.