Casting and splinting are common non-surgical treatment options for injuries related to the bones and soft tissues (muscles, tendons, ligaments). Casting and splinting help stabilize fractures and reduce pain, swelling, and muscle spasm.
The word “fracture” implies a broken bone. When you break a bone, your doctor first aligns the fractured pieces together in the appropriate position, and then your therapist applies a cast or a splint in order to hold the bones in place while your fracture heals.
Casting is the most effective way to immobilize skeletal fractures. Skeletal fractures normally require around 6 weeks of immobilization. Casts are made of hard setting materials such as plaster or fiberglass (a material made of glass fibres in resins) to provide the best clinical outcome. Fiberglass is more expensive but is lighter in weight, lasts longer, and breathes better than plaster. In addition to these, X-rays can pass through fiberglass better and may help your doctor investigate your fracture better during the healing phase.
Splinting is a highly effective way of immobilizing tissues or joints (hand, wrist, foot or ankle) when some movement or flexibility is required for optimum healing. Splints can be made of plaster or fiberglass. Splints, also known as half-casts, can be adjusted to accommodate swelling associated with various soft tissue and joint injuries. Splints can also be ready-made or custom-made. Depending on the extent and severity of your fracture/injury, your therapist will fabricate your splint to provide you with the best fit and comfort. Splinting combined with gentle physiotherapy exercises is very important in the treatment of most fractures and many soft tissue and joint injuries.
Please ask reception to book in specifically with Michelle O’Donnell who is our Hand Therapist and works Tuesday and Thursday at East Bentleigh. Alternatively, Rob O’Donnell and Anthony Lance at East Bentleigh and Neeraj Kochhar at Parkdale can make simple thumb splints.