What are the Symptoms of Leg Fracture?

By  ,  Onlymyhealth editorial team
Apr 06, 2013

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What are the Symptoms of Leg FractureThe symptoms of a leg fracture depend on the type of fracture one has sustained. Some of the symptoms that are commonly experienced by people include the following:

  • pain
  • swelling or tenderness in the affected area of the leg
  • difficulty in exerting weight or in mobility
  • More severe symptoms would indicate a change in the actual shape of the leg externally.

Symptoms according to the Type of Leg Fracture

If you fracture the shaft of the femur, you may experience these symptoms:

  • Pain
  • Bruising in the thigh
  • Swelling
  • Inability to bear weight on the injured leg
  • Difficulty in moving the knee or hip on the affected side
  • Portions of the fractured bone can be seen if the fracture breaks through the skin.

If you fracture the shaft of the tibia or both the tibia and fibula, you would experience the following symptoms:

  • Pain
  • Swelling
  • Bruising in the lower leg
  • Tenderness
  • Deformity in the shape of the lower leg
  • Abnormal positioning or alignment of the affected side of the foot
  • Visible portions of the affected bone, especially if the fracture has broken through the skin.

If only the fibula bone has fractured, you may experience:

  • tenderness at the site of the fracture
  • localised swelling
  • pain at the outside of the lower leg, which gets worse if you put weight on the affected bone such as by walking.

When to See the Doctor

If you or someone you know shows signs of a broken leg, you must take him/her to the doctor immediately. The more one delays seeking treatment, the more time it is likely to take for the injury to heal. Besides, delays in treatment can cause problems later.

Seek medical attention for any type of leg fracture i.e. from high-impact trauma caused by a motorcycle or car accident to low-impact trauma caused by a direct hit. The fractures of the thighbone are the most critical and may incur potentially life-threatening injuries that need immediate medical attention to keep the area protected from damage.


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