Analysis

What to do if you suspect a fracture in the ED

A small number of fractures go unnoticed in the emergency department, but the human and financial cost can be high, so nurses need to know the signs to look for

A small number of fractures go unnoticed in the emergency department, but the human and financial cost can be high, so nurses need to know the signs to look for

  • When fractures go unnoticed the human cost can be high – loss of function, cosmetic changes, even loss of life
  • Compensation claims for missed fractures have an immeasurable impact on the patients involved and also the staff who treat them
  • Remedies recommended include a new qualification for interpretation of emergency X-rays that would be available to nurses and other ED staff

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