Patterns of Injury at Different Ages

All these biomechanical properties change with age and there are characteristic injury patterns for different age groups [4]. For example, a fall on the outstretched hand:

  • In a 2 year old, might cause a mid-shaft greenstick clavicle fracture
  • In a 4 year old, a buckle fracture of the distal radius could occur
  • In an 8 year old, a supracondylar fracture of the elbow might be sustained
  • At 12 years old, a scaphoid fracture could occur

This represents a transition from the paediatric pattern of injury towards that seen at adulthood.

Scaphoid fractures are rare below the age of 12 years and unheard of below the age of 8 years

Learning bite

As a general rule, the younger the patient, the greater the potential for remodelling.


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