As much as we may try to prevent them, injuries happen to us and our kids (especially at local sports and summer camps), and often when we least expect them! Due to increased activity in the spring and summer months, injuries are one of the most common reasons patients seek medical care.

So, how are you supposed to know what kind of injury you or your child is dealing with? Because, in some cases, the injury will require an X-ray for the proper diagnosis. Our AFC Urgent Care Monroe Road team shares some helpful answers below, so keep reading.

Do I Need an X-ray?

An X-ray may not always be required for your specific injury, but all injuries should be examined by a doctor or medical professional. A thorough physical examination will help to identify the type of injury, develop an effective treatment plan and prevent further complications.

If a fracture goes untreated, future complications could occur, such as bone deformity, permanent nerve damage, muscle and ligament damage, and extended pain and swelling. We’ve listed some common signs and symptoms of bone breaks and fractures below.

Signs of Broken Bones

  • Bruising and discoloration. Though it can occur with any type of injury, bruising as a result of fracture may be particularly extensive and dark in color.
  • Swelling. Swelling often occurs due to blunt trauma, when fluid leakage causes soft tissue such as muscles and skin to swell. Swelling may be a sign that a bone has broken.
  • Crepitus. Crepitus is a condition in which bits of a broken bone can be felt underneath the skin after an injury has been sustained. This sensation is not normally felt in the body and may indicate a breakage.
  • Deformity. If a bone is either bent in an odd direction, protrudes from the skin or is otherwise deformed in some way, a fracture is almost the guaranteed cause.

Are There Risks Involved?

There is a small risk because you are dealing with radiation, but because X-rays are one of the oldest and most common forms of medical imaging, doctors say the benefit of making the correct diagnosis outweighs any small potential risk.

Still, we’ve listed a few ways you can be careful below.

Ways to Exercise Caution

  • Only allow X-rays, fluoroscopy or CT scans when there is a clear health benefit for you or your child.
  • Use the lowest amount of radiation possible (based on your or your child’s size) to get the needed images.
  • Only X-ray the area needed.

Need an X-ray? Don’t hesitate to stop by our AFC Urgent Care Monroe Road center today.