Patellar Fractures – Frisco, TX
OrthoTexas, Frisco provides diagnosis and treatment for a wide range of orthopedic conditions affecting the knee joint. The surgeons specialize in using surgical and non-surgical modalities to treat patellar fractures.

Patellar Fractures

Patella refers to the kneecap bone which acts as a shield to protect the knee joint and is thus prone to injuries. This bone is round in shape and located in front of the knee joint. The patella is covered by the quadricep tendon which also connects the thigh muscles and the shin bone (lower leg bone). A kneecap fracture may occur as a minor crack in the bone or cause it to shatter into multiple pieces. Such fractures can occur in any part of the kneecap either horizontally or vertically.

The patellar fractures can be categorized as follows:

  • Open Fracture- The bones break out of the skin and the kneecap is exposed
  • Closed Fracture- There is no breakage through the skin
  • Non-Displaced Fracture- The kneecap is broken but the bone fragments remain attached and there is no displacement
  • Displaced Fracture- The bone pieces disintegrate and move away from their place
  • Osteochondral Fracture- It involves damage to the cartilage which connects the Patella to the other bones in the knee joint. Such fractures may increase the risk of Osteoarthritis over a period of time

Causes Of Patellar Fractures

  • Direct fall on the knee
  • Direct hit or force applied to the knee
  • Automobile accident
  • Twisting and turning of the knee can cause stress to the Patella
  • Sports injury

Symptoms Of Patellar Fractures

  • Pain which can be severe and sharp
  • Inability to bend the knee
  • Redness and swelling around the knee joint
  • Tenderness when touched
  • A broken piece of bone may protrude out of the skin
  • Difficulty in standing, walking or squatting
  • Disfigured joint
  • A feeling of the knee getting locked
  • Numbness in the leg or thighs

Diagnosis Of Patellar Fractures
  • Detailed physical examination of the injured knee by the doctor
  • Analysis of the mode, time as well as the symptoms of the injury
  • X-ray scan to assess severity and location of breakage
  • CT scans
  • MRI scan to assess damage to tendons, muscles, ligaments or cartilage

Treatment For Patellar Fractures

The method of treatment adopted depends on the type of fracture and the severity of the injury. Surgery is required only in case the quadricep tendon is damaged and the knee cap is displaced.  The treatment options are listed below:

  • Using a cast or a knee brace for 4-6 weeks to immobilize the entire leg from the thigh to the shin bone
  • The immobilizing cast/brace is followed by a removable knee brace to keep the knee stable
  • Using a wheelchair or crutches to avoid weight bearing while the bone heals
  • Pain killers and anti-inflammatory drugs may be prescribed to relieve the symptoms
  • Physical therapy is mandatory to regain mobility and strengthen the supporting muscles or ligaments
  • Physical Reduction- the displaced or broken piece of bone is put back in place manually by an expert
  • Open Reduction Internal Fixation surgery- the bones are put together in place and fixed using metal screws, pins and wires
  • Patellectomy- Surgical repair of the broken kneecap

For treatment of patellar fractures, visit OrthoTexas, Frisco. To schedule an appointment with the knee surgeons, call at (214) 618-5502.