With proper treatments or medications, broken bones generally heal completely without any aroused problems. There are many people experiencing severely broken bones that heal properly, that they are able to regain muscle strength around the affected bones and thus, do almost all activities they used to do before the bone was broken. However, some others heal their broken bones perfectly in the past, yet experience recurring pain years later.
Why broken bone hurts years later
Broken bones may affect any bones all over the body receiving excessive external force. This can also affect people with osteoporosis, since this health issue causes the bone to be less flexible, stiff, and lack of density as a result of calcium and mineral deficiency. When a bone is broken from sports, accidents, or osteoporosis, it can be healed completely with proper procedures and remedies. However, it cannot be healed as if nothing has happened to the bone previously.
Broken bones may cause post-traumatic arthritis that develop years after the healing process. Broken bones in certain parts of the body are more prone to arthritis that develop afterwards. These locations include the knees, wrist, ankles, back, and even hands, where movements are massive and unavoidable. When you broke a bone from playing sports, you might also tear the cartilage or ligament around the broken bone. This bone arthritis may not be felt right away after the injuries or during the healing process, but may occur months or years after the broken part healed completely.
Arthritis develops as you age. This is also one of the reasons why you are experiencing it years after the injury instead of during the initial healing process. Thus, when arthritis happens to younger people, severe trauma might be the suspect and thus, needs to be observed thoroughly. Post-traumatic arthritis commonly develops only on the previously broken bones or torn cartilages.
What injuries develop arthritis?
All injuries that involve fractures, cracked bones, or broken bones have a risk of developing post-traumatic arthritis, which commonly occurs a while after the healing process. Some examples of injuries that may cause painful arthritis are:
- Injuries from sports, which include knee sprains, broken ankles, or broken knees. Broken bones that happen during sports are often caused by hard blows on certain parts of bones. Thus, its surrounding cartilages and muscles are often influenced as well.
- Broken bones or torn cartilages and muscles on some body parts that require long time to recover. To be specific, fractures on knees may lead to arthritis as a result of stiffness develops during the healing process.
- Injuries that are suffered by those who put much weight on the affected area. Excessive pressure on the area may lead to the symptoms of arthritis developing years after the injury heals.
How to prevent arthritis from broken bone
Although arthritis is common with those who age and suffer from injuries causing fractures, it is possible for you to prevent the symptoms of arthritis from occurring. Good prevention is also essential for minimizing the risk of developing hurt broken bone a long time after the healing process is completed. You can slow the progression of arthritis by:
- Doing light exercises during broken bone healing. Although you might be advised not to move the affected area, it is in fact beneficial to do light exercises that involve an affected fracture in order to prevent stiffness of the joints around the broken bone. However, you need to really make sure that these exercises do not trigger any major displacement of the fractured bones, which may delay healing and causes severe pain.
- Keeping your body weight within healthy range, especially if you have broken the knee or ankle previously. Putting too much pressure on the knee or ankle as a consequence to excessive weight gain may trigger the development of arthritis that occurs after the fracture heals.
- Be wise on putting repetitive pressure over the joint or muscles, as it may trigger muscle sore that leads to arthritis. Thus, use the parts of your body alternatively, preventing putting pressure on the same knee, arm, or ankle repetitively.
- If you sit a lot, take some intervals to do stretching. Sitting for a long time may cause muscle and joint stiffness, which is worse with previously broken bone.
- Once you experience broken bones, follow the directed treatments and avoid getting the cast off without talking to your doctor, as this may cause displacement that influences your joints.