Growth Plate Injuries


CONDITIONS

Growth Plate Injuries

A child’s bones are subject to a unique injury known as a growth plate injury. The growth plates are weak areas of developing cartilage tissue located near the ends of the long bones. The growth plate determines the length and shape of the mature bone. Kids who experience a severe growth plate injury will develop a deformity at the affected site along with persistent, severe pain. In many cases, the child may not be able to put pressure on the affected limb. Causes of growth plate injuries can include blunt force trauma from falls or crushing, as in an automobile accident. Or, they may be tied to overuse or chronic stress on a part of the body, as is often seen in gymnasts, pitchers and distance runners. Nonsurgical treatments for these injuries may include casting or splinting, surgery, post-rehabilitation exercises and follow-up evaluations via X-rays.
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