Medicine
Fact-checked

At TheHealthBoard, we're committed to delivering accurate, trustworthy information. Our expert-authored content is rigorously fact-checked and sourced from credible authorities. Discover how we uphold the highest standards in providing you with reliable knowledge.

Learn more...

How do I Treat a Pelvic Fracture?

Treating a pelvic fracture requires immediate medical attention, often involving rest, pain management, and physical therapy. In severe cases, surgery may be necessary to realign bones. Recovery is a gradual process, with a focus on minimizing movement to allow healing. Intrigued by the intricacies of pelvic fracture care? Discover the step-by-step journey to recovery in our comprehensive guide.
Erin Oxendine
Erin Oxendine

Pelvic fractures can be extremely painful and may involve torn muscles or ligaments. There are primarily two ways that doctors treat these types of fractures: surgical and non-surgical. Since a pelvic fracture usually occurs from blunt force injury, a person with this condition may have other injuries that require emergency treatment.

At the hospital or medical facility, the patient will undergo x-rays and possibly other scans to determine if the pelvic fracture is a stable fracture, which normally will not need surgery. A stable fracture means that there is one crack in the pelvic ring and no internal injuries. The patient may need some type of assistance, such as crutches, to get around, and the doctor will probably prescribe pain medication. Patients with limited movement might also need blood thinners to prevent blood clots from forming in the legs.

An X-ray of the pelvis.
An X-ray of the pelvis.

An individual who has an unstable pelvic fracture often has more than one break in the pelvic ring along with internal bleeding and organ damage. This kind of injury will typically need immediate surgery. During the procedure, the doctor will repair the injuries and the patient will most likely need a fixation device in the pelvic area. Surgeons often use surgical screws and plates to hold the broken bones in place and connect the pelvic ring with the hip and thigh areas.

Surgery and physical therapy may be necessary to treat a pelvic fracture.
Surgery and physical therapy may be necessary to treat a pelvic fracture.

Once the surgeon has fixed the pelvic fracture, the patient will generally remain in the hospital for a few days or until any other injuries have healed. Some patients with pelvic fractures are placed in traction after the surgery to keep the body still. Doctors will typically prescribe antibiotics to prevent infections and medication for pain.

Patients will need to return to the surgeon for follow-up care so that the doctor can check for signs of infection and to check the patient's progress. Most doctors advise patients to keep off their feet as much as possible and to try not to put any weight on the lower body. It usually takes several months before individuals are able to fully stand up on their own after experiencing a pelvic fracture.

Patients may use crutches to help get around following a pelvic fracture.
Patients may use crutches to help get around following a pelvic fracture.

Doctors also suggest that people who have stable and unstable pelvic fractures visit an orthopedist for additional treatment such as physical therapy. The orthopedist may want the person to do certain exercises after the fracture have healed to strengthen the muscles and increase flexibility. Some elderly individuals may use a walker or wheelchair to help with mobility.

You might also Like

Discussion Comments

anon1002583

Is it acceptable/ normal practice for a 71 year old female with a fractured pubic ramus to be discharged after 36hrs to home in excruciating pain to her home, where she lives alone? No follow up appointment or physio given. I am interested to know if this is standard practice.

Thank you in anticipation for your professional response.

Post your comments
Login:
Forgot password?
Register:
    • An X-ray of the pelvis.
      By: Allen Penton
      An X-ray of the pelvis.
    • Surgery and physical therapy may be necessary to treat a pelvic fracture.
      By: WavebreakmediaMicro
      Surgery and physical therapy may be necessary to treat a pelvic fracture.
    • Patients may use crutches to help get around following a pelvic fracture.
      By: Alison Bowden
      Patients may use crutches to help get around following a pelvic fracture.
    • Pelvic pain may be a symptom of a pelvic fracture.
      By: BlueSkyImages
      Pelvic pain may be a symptom of a pelvic fracture.
    • Patients healing from surgery to repair a fractured pelvis may recieve antibiotics to prevent infections.
      By: Monkey Business
      Patients healing from surgery to repair a fractured pelvis may recieve antibiotics to prevent infections.
    • It often takes several months before patients are able to stand on their own after a pelvic fracture.
      By: Monkey Business
      It often takes several months before patients are able to stand on their own after a pelvic fracture.
    • Individuals recovering from a pelvic fracture may need to re-build their balance skills.
      By: Ammentorp
      Individuals recovering from a pelvic fracture may need to re-build their balance skills.