Preparing for your appointment

Depending on the severity of the break, your family doctor or the emergency room physician might refer you or your child to a doctor who specializes in injuries of the body's musculoskeletal system (orthopedic surgeon).

What you can do

Make a list that includes:

  • Details about your or your child's symptoms and the incident that caused them
  • Information about past medical problems
  • All the medications and dietary supplements you or your child takes
  • Questions to ask the doctor

For a broken arm, questions to ask your doctor include:

  • What tests are needed?
  • What is the best course of action?
  • Is surgery necessary?
  • What restrictions will need to be followed?
  • Do you recommend seeing a specialist?
  • What pain medications do you recommend?

Don't hesitate to ask other questions.

What to expect from your doctor

Your doctor is likely to ask you questions, including:

  • Did the symptoms come on suddenly?
  • What caused the symptoms?
  • Did an injury trigger the symptoms?
  • How severe are the symptoms?
  • What, if anything, seems to improve the symptoms?
  • What, if anything, appears to worsen the symptoms?
July 28, 2017
References
  1. Adult forearm fractures. American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons. http://orthoinfo.aaos.org/topic.cfm?topic=a00584. Accessed May 30, 2017.
  2. Beautler A, et al. General principles of definitive fracture management. https://www.uptodate.com/home. Accessed May 30, 2017.
  3. Beautler A. General principles of fracture management: Bone healing and fracture description. https://www.uptodate.com/home. Accessed May 30, 2017.
  4. Bone health basics. American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons. http://orthoinfo.aaos.org/topic.cfm?topic=a00578. Accessed May 30, 2017.
  5. Pountos I, et al. Do nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs affect bone healing? A critical analysis. The Scientific World Journal. 2012;2012:606404. https://www.hindawi.com/journals/tswj/2012/606404/. Accessed May 22, 2017.
  6. Broken arm. American Society for Surgery of the Hand. http://www.assh.org/handcare/hand-arm-injuries/broken-bones. Accessed May 30, 2017.
  7. Mathison DJ, et al. General principles of fracture management: Fracture patterns and description in children. https://www.uptodate.com/home. Accessed May 30, 2017.
  8. Forearm fractures in children. American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons. http://orthoinfo.aaos.org/topic.cfm?topic=a00039. Accessed May 30, 2017.
  9. Rizzo M (expert opinion). Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minn. June 9, 2017.