Common Complications of a Trimalleolar Fracture

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Common Complications of a Trimalleolar Fracture

Hello, I’m Ed Smith, a Sacramento Bone Fracture Attorney. Everyone understands that there is always a chance of being involved in a car accident whenever they get behind the wheel; however, people also run the risk of being seriously injured in a car accident. While some car accidents might be minor, others can be severe. They can cause multiple injuries that require a significant amount of medical attention to repair. The resulting bills can become expensive, especially if the patient requires an ICU stay or a surgical repair after being injured. One of the more serious traumatic injuries is called a trimalleolar fracture. This is a severe fracture of the ankle that requires immediate medical attention.

How to Diagnose a Trimalleolar Fracture

A trimalleolar fracture is a fracture of the lateral malleolus, the medial malleolus, and the distal (lower) part of the tibia where the leg meets the ankle. Some people call the distal tibia the posterior malleolus, giving rise to the name. Most physicians will be able to diagnose all three fractures using an x-ray; however, it requires in impressive amount of mechanical stress to fracture all three malleoli in the same injury. This stress will also commonly tear some of the ligaments in the ankle. These ligament tears will require an MRI to diagnose. Ligament tears are challenging to diagnose on an x-ray, which is why other imaging modalities are used.

Many People Have Other Fractures and Injuries

In addition to the malleolus fractures and the ligament tears, many people have other fractures and injuries because the ankle is a complex joint with multiple bones involved. If someone is involved in a serious car accident, they could also sustain tibial fractures. Some patients sustain broken metatarsals, or broken bones in the foot. If there are multiple fractures involved, patients could also tear an artery in their leg, leading to serious bleeding that constitutes a medical emergency.

Patients Can Develop Complications

Patients who sustain a trimalleolar fracture are at a significant risk of developing complications. The most notable complication is the development of chronic pain while walking. Almost every patient with a trimalleolar fracture will require surgery to place the bones in proper alignment. The bones will be held in place using surgical screws and plates. These will stay in place for life. As patients learn how to walk again, they may feel some mild pain. This chronic pain could require long-term treatment if it doesn’t dissipate within a few weeks to months after surgical repair. While this is a risk, most patients will make a full recovery.

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Contact an Experienced Bone Fracture Attorney

I’m Ed Smith, a Sacramento Bone Fracture Attorney. Patients who sustain a trimalleolar fracture are seriously injured. People with injuries sustained in car accident should call me at (916) 921-6400 for friendly, free advice. People can also reach me on my toll-free number at (800) 404-5400.

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