Fractures are very common. Fractures and broken bones are the same thing, although many people don’t realize this. Bone fractures are also very common in children. Children are very active, always running, jumping and constantly falling down. In fact, fractures are the fourth most common injury among children under six years of age. Corner fractures, also known as metaphyseal, are very common in children, especially young children or toddlers. Corner fractures are exactly as the name implies. They are breaks on the corner of the bones. The way a corner fracture appears is as part of the bone was sheared off the growth plate. At times, these fractures are very hard to spot at first. In most cases, the doctors need to take skeletal surveys to get the best and most accurate view of the injury. Dating the corner fractures is often difficult with young children.
Dating of corner fractures is very important in getting the correct treatment. Corner fractures have long been characteristic of child abuse victims. They will most often occur if a child is badly shaken, causing the bones to rub together, which will make them get “wore down” as though parts of the bone were shaven off. Many times, they are innocent injuries that happen because of an active toddler falling, but they are still at suspect for abuse because of the way the break appears. Many times, doctors, while attempting dating of corner fractures, will also observe subdural hematomas in the children. Corner fractures are very similar to bucket handle fractures. They are often mistaken for each other. They are most common in the distal femora, tibia and promimal humeri. They are also usually bilateral.
In many cases of bone fractures, they begin to heal themselves while they become fused back together. It is often possible for doctors to look at X-rays to determine a date of an injury based on the progress it has made in healing itself. In the case of corner fractures, they don’t always heal back up as they should, which makes dating of corner fractures very difficult. Dating of corner fractures is used as a means to determine how long the patient has had the fracture as well as the severity and how it is progressively healing.
Corner fractures are often easy to heal if they are caught early. Often, rest is all that is needed as well as a cast so area is not moved too much. It’s unfortunate that corner fractures aren’t usually found without X-rays because it often prolongs the healing process. Another disadvantage of corner fractures is that they are often mistaken for child abuse when they are the result of an accident.