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What causes shin bone pain after an accident?

Answered by
Dr. Bonnie Berger-Durnbaugh

General & Family Physician

Practicing since :1991

Answered : 3021 Questions

Posted on Thu, 10 May 2018 in Bones, Muscles and Joints
Question: On December 2nd, I fell on concrete on my right side. No broken bones but I did spain my right knee. I also injured my right hand. Xrays were done but no breaks. My shin bone is my now very painful and red and my right foot is very blue. There is no pain in that area. Not sure is I should see an orthopedic doctor. I am diabetic and have vasculitis. I tried upload pics but that didn't work.
Answered by Dr. Bonnie Berger-Durnbaugh 33 minutes later
Brief Answer:
Thoughts on this

Detailed Answer:
Hello and welcome,

I am very sorry about your fall.

Bleeding into the soft tissues which causes bruising appearance can seep down to the most dependent area of the leg due to gravity. So this may be the cause of the blue color. But if your right foot is cold or significantly colder than the left foot, then the blue may be from a clot in which case you should be seen right away.

X-rays which do not show a break initially can sometimes show a break later. This is because it can take some time for a bony callus to form around the break. So if symptoms are significant and suspicious for a break, it's good to have another X-ray. Usually I wait a couple of weeks to retake X-rays but changes may show up now.

Another thing to consider: If there is swelling below a level of the leg, there could be a deep vein thrombosis which should be evaluated in the ER.

If the shin is redder and more swollen and painful now, 10 days out, I recommend not waiting to see an orthopedic doctor but go back to a good quality ER.

Maintaining good control of your sugars now will help with healing, but I am concerned about the increased pain, redness, and blue foot (if the latter isn't just from dependent bruising).
Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Chakravarthy Mazumdar

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