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Straddle Fracture

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August 31, 2017
Edward Smith

File:Osteopetrosis pelvis X-ray.png

Straddle Fracture

I’m Ed Smith, a Sacramento Bone Fracture Lawyer. A straddle fracture is a serious fracture of the pelvis that too many people sustain in traumatic accidents. It has several important implications that should be discussed.

What is a Straddle Fracture?

The pelvis joins together in the front at a point called the pubic symphysis. The top and bottom halves of this bone are called the superior and inferior pubic rami, respectively. A straddle fracture is a pelvic fracture of both the superior and inferior pubic rami, representing a severe bone fracture.

Mechanism of Injury

A straddle fracture is one of many traumatic injuries that can result from an auto accident or a bicycle accident. In order to fracture both the superior and inferior pubic rami, there must be a significant force applied in a manner known as a vertical shear. This means that significant force must be applied from either directly above or directly below the pubis, such as someone falling onto the crossbar of their bicycle.

Treatment of a Straddle Fracture

If someone comes in with concern for a straddle fracture, the first step is to immobilize the pelvis. There are numerous structures in the area that could be injured if the bones move around. Then, imaging is needed to determine the extent of the injuries in order to plan for surgery, if necessary.

Several Possible Complications

The pelvis is home to numerous other organs. Injuries to these organs could lead to serious comorbidities. For example, there are nerves that run through the pelvis, such as the obturator nerve, that might be injured by bone fragments. This could lead to the loss of motor and sensory function in the area.

Structures at Risk

There are many different organs that are near the pelvis that could be injured by a straddle fracture. For example, it is not uncommon to have urinary tract injuries with a straddle fracture. For women, the uterus is also nearby. Damage to the uterus and ovaries in a straddle fracture could have implications for pregnancy and future fertility.

Differential Diagnosis

When there is a concern for a straddle fracture, medical professionals will consider several diagnoses, including:

Injury Prognosis

The prognosis of a straddle fracture typically depends more on the associated injuries than on the fracture itself. If there is damage to surrounding organs, such as the genitourinary system, the road to recovery could become significantly longer for a patient and their loved ones.

Surgery is Common

Most straddle fractures lead to displaced bone fragments because the bones have been broken in more than one place. If imaging confirms displaced fractures, surgery will be necessary.

Contact a Compassionate Pelvic Fracture Attorney

I’m Ed Smith, a Sacramento Bone Fracture Lawyer. Those who have sustained a straddle fracture of their pelvis should reach out to me at (916) 921-6400 or (800) 404-5400 for free, friendly advice.

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Image Source: Printed with permission under the GNU Free Documentation License from Wikimedia Commons

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