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Also called: Broken bone

A fracture is a break, usually in a bone. If the broken bone punctures the skin, it is called an open or compound fracture. Fractures commonly happen because of car accidents, falls, or sports injuries. Other causes are low bone density and osteoporosis, which cause weakening of the bones. Overuse can cause stress fractures, which are very small cracks in the bone.

Symptoms of a fracture are

  • Intense pain
  • Deformity – the limb looks out of place
  • Swelling, bruising, or tenderness around the injury
  • Numbness and tingling
  • Problems moving a limb

You need to get medical care right away for any fracture. An x-ray can tell if your bone is broken. You may need to wear a cast or splint. Sometimes you need surgery to put in plates, pins or screws to keep the bone in place.

Also called: Coccyx disorders

The tailbone is the small bone at the bottom of your backbone, or spine. Tailbone disorders include tailbone injuries, pain, infections, cysts and tumors. You rarely break your tailbone. Instead, most injuries cause bruises or pulled ligaments. A backward fall onto a hard surface, such as slipping on ice, is the most common cause of such injuries. Symptoms of various tailbone disorders include pain in the tailbone area, pain upon sitting, pain or numbness in the arms or legs due to pressure on nerves in the tailbone area, and a mass or growth you can see or feel.

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