Treatment depends on the type of fracture, age, and activity level. After the splint or cast is removed, rehabilitation exercises or physiotherapy is started to reduce stiffness and restore movement in the wrist. Rehabilitation can help, but it can take several months or longer for complete healing. Early treatment helps minimize pain and stiffness.
The physiotherapist uses cryotherapy to help control pain or swelling in the wrist, hand, or arm.
Thermotherapy can also be used to help control pain or swelling in the wrist, hand, or arm.
Transcutaneous electrical stimulation (TENS) provides pain relief by exciting sensory nerves, it delivers small electrical impulses through electrodes that have adhesive pads to attach them to a person's skin.
Ultrasound Therapy helps to increase the blood flow to the area to reduce swelling and inflammation. It also enhances the healing of the fractured bone.
Range of motion exercises
The physiotherapist uses manual therapy to enable the joints and muscles to move more freely. Physiotherapists prescribe exercises during recovery from a wrist fracture. The physiotherapist gently moves the elbow, by passive range-of-motion" exercises. As the arm gets stronger, active range-of-motion exercises are started.
Once the bone is healed, resistance exercises are performed using weights and also retrain the muscles to prevent re-injury.
Daily activities are taught to independently perform the activities eg, dressing, cooking, buttoning a shirt, writing or working on a computer.
Depending on the requirements of the job or the type of sports, physiotherapist designs a tailored program to meet specific demands and address the unique needs and goals.
Prevent Long-Term Disability
The physiotherapist helps to prevent long-term disability by increasing the level of fitness of the wrist and restoring full range of motion and strength safely to return safely to previous home and work activities. The therapist also recommends protective equipment, such as wrist guards while playing sports.
After the cast is taken off or after the surgery stiffness generally lessens in the month or two and continues to improve for at least 2 years. Most patients can resume light activities, such as swimming or lower body gyming within a month or two. Vigorous activities, such as playing football and skiing, may be resumed between 3 and 6 months after the injury.