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Elbow split fracture, cast placed. Want to shorten recovery time. Will calcium supplements help?

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General & Family Physician
Practicing since : 1978
Answered : 6595 Questions
I suffered with a small Elbow fracture (split fracture) in my right hand on Wednesday and was subsequently treated by application of a cast for bone recovery.
Tentative recovery time has been mentioned as 2-3 weeks by the treating doctor.
I want to shorten the recovery time as I am not able to do any office work without my right hand and company can't give such large medical leave.
Please suggest some general steps that I can take to shorten the recovery time .
Ex: will taking vitamin D/calcium supplements help ?

Posted Mon, 21 May 2012 in Bones, Muscles and Joints
Answered by Dr. Pavan Kumar Gupta 26 minutes later

Thanks for the query.

I understand your busy schedule; but the fact is we cannot shorten the time to heal.

Bone healing is a natural process and will take the required time.

Taking of VIT D and calcium may help your general bone health especially if you are deficient. But as far as your fracture is concerned, they have limited role at your age.

I hope to have answered your query; however you can revert to me for any follow up query.

Thanks and best of luck.
Above answer was peer-reviewed by
Follow-up: Elbow split fracture, cast placed. Want to shorten recovery time. Will calcium supplements help? 1 hour later

Thanks a lot for answering my query.

2 small follow up questions:

1. I am trying to use me right hand fingers a little as some people suggested that
keeping the fingers active is necessary to maintain blood circulation in the fractured hand. will using fingers affect the elbow recovery ? the elbow is
immobilized in a cast

2. If my recovery is complete, is there a way to
come to know of it (besides x-ray) at a personal level. Does absence of pain
signal nearly-recovered bone ? Any other indicators I should look out for ?

Answered by Dr. Pavan Kumar Gupta 24 minutes later
Hello and thanks again,

1. You should keep moving fingers and it will not affect your elbow recovery.

2. Recovery in small split type fractures, as in you, is generally complete. But you may not have any symptoms suggesting recovery. You may have some pain or you may not have immediate full range of motion in your elbow joint even after removal of the cast. This will however go away in following few weeks after the plaster cast removal. You will get complete movement of your elbow joint.

Hope this answers your query. Let me know if you have any more queries.
If all your queries are answered, please close this discussion.

Thanks and Regards
Above answer was peer-reviewed by
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