Fracture Repair in Cats - Page 2

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Fracture Repair in Cats

By: Dr. Nicholas Trout

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Related Symptoms

  • Any swollen and painful area of an extremity may be confused for a fracture, particularly if your cat will only allow a cursory examination of the injured limb. A swelling may be due to an infection, cyst, tumor, abscess or hematoma.

  • Dislocations of joints can produce profound lameness that can be misinterpreted as a potential fracture. Certain dislocations or luxations may give rise to more characteristic placement of a limb. For example, a dislocated hip may give rise to positioning of the paw beneath the body with the knee outwardly rotated. This would be quite different from a femur fracture that might just "dangle" from the body.

  • Fractures may go unnoticed in cases with multiple injuries, for example, a cat with an obvious fracture of a radius and ulna may also have a subtle scapula fracture which is easy to overlook.

  • Many fractures can have significant effects on other organ systems that need to be taken into consideration, such as pelvic fractures causing urethral trauma, spinal fractures causing spinal cord injury and rib fractures causing lung trauma.

  • Some traumatic injuries to bone create crushing or shearing forces on the growing areas of young bone, the growth plates. Such damage does not always result in overt fractures or changes on a x-ray, directly after the trauma. The interference with the growth plate may take weeks to create a visible change in the shape of the limb or to produce an abnormality detectable on an x-ray.

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