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Is it safe to play baseball after a buckle fracture recovery?

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General & Family Physician
Practicing since : 2008
Answered : 641 Questions
My son is 17 and 3 months and suffered from a buckle fracture on 1 XXXXXXX 2014 from snowboarding. He wore a hard cast for 5 weeks, which was removed 3 days ago. He continued to play baseball with cast at practice (but didn't hit the baseball with a bat). His first doctor (the one he had on vacation) told him he could do anything he wanted with the cast on and would be back to optimum playing capability by 8 weeks (which would be 25/26 Feb). He now has a different doctor (military doctor) because the injury happened while we were on vacation. His new doctor seems to be a lot more strict and very standardized (one size fits all). He did say that the x-rays show that he has healed (new bone growth over the fracture). We don't have any follow up appointment scheduled, as he is now done with treatment. He told my son that he should only "simulate" throwing for two weeks, then light throwing for the next 2 weeks, then he can play baseball in one month (which would be 5 March). My son is a competitive baseball player (high school and travel ball). The High School Season just started last week. He is already throwing hard (worked with his coach today), as they are really wanting to use him; and my son really wants to play. My son said it doesn't feel weak at all and the coaches said he's not having any problems throwing with velocity. I'm thinking that it may have helped that he continued to play with the cast on. My son seems to think he'll be ready in a week to play in the games (which will be 8 days after cast removal). I'm actually shocked at how much range of motion he currently has so soon (but has been working it a lot with rice). From my own observation, I'm thinking that the real key is not time, but whether or not he has the strength and full range of motion. Question - What are your thoughts? If he has full-range of motion and his wrist isn't weak, do you think he will be okay to play at full capacity in a week, two weeks, three week? Seeing him now, I really don't think 4 weeks is necessary (maybe for some, but he is very athletic and seems to be fine).
Posted Fri, 28 Feb 2014 in General Health
Answered by Dr. Gaurav Katiyar 1 hour later
Brief Answer: Healing time varies. Detailed Answer: Hi, Thanks for your query I have gone through your query. The length of time taken for healing depends on where the fracture is and how severe the break is. Buckle fracture is a incomplete fracture also known as Torus fracture. A simple buckle fracture will need a plaster cast for two to three weeks and be almost completely healed in four weeks. Healing time of fracture varies with children. So it cannot be said exactly when your son start playing normally. Usually doctors advise rest for the maximum possible healing time for a particular fracture. As you have said he has full range of motion and wrist is not weak, I advise him to wait minimum for two more weeks before he can start playing baseball. His bone should be healed enough to tackle the impact. Hope I have answered your query. If you have any further questions I will be happy to help. Regards,
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