A broken wrist is one of the most common injuries causing emergency department attendance. A fracture of the distal radius or a carpal bone can often need surgical treatment to ensure a speedy recovery to normal function.
Most commonly wrist fractures are cause by falling onto an outstretched hand. They can happen after a simple trip, a sports injury or a more major motor vehicle accident.
The wrist will be painful, stiff and swollen and in more severe injuries with displacement of the fracture the wrist can have a deformed appearance.
Tests and diagnosis
Plain x-ray is usually the only imaging required, but in more complex fractures a CT or MRI may be required.