Saturday, October 20, 2012

Ithaca Cortland Lawyer Answers How Long Does it Take a Scaphoid Fracture to Heal?

The little bone with a BIG Purpose

The Scaphoid (aka navicular) bone in the wrist is unique for a great many reasons. I like to call it the Small bone with a BIG purpose. If you hurt your hand or wrist in an auto accident make sure your hands are completely evaluated for issues/problems. The worst thing is an undiagnosed (undiscovered) injury that goes UN-treated. It can spell disaster to your future ability to be fully functional.


1. It "is" to the wrist and hand as the "knee" is to the leg, a firm foundational structure to allow for (permit) full strength, support, and function. Without a healthy, proper, and healed Scaphoid our hand, fingers, and wrist are in trouble as is the leg, hip, and foot if the Knee has an issue.

2. The blood supply to this bone can be backwards. Therefore the point of injury or break is crucial in determining (a) the amount of damage to the bone and (b) how long it will take to fully heal.

Which brings us to today and the question, just how long does it take a Scaphoid to heal?

Fast answer, 4-6 weeks to 10- 12 months. That is a BIG "to"...

It Depends On Three Main Things:

1. Area of fracture to the bone.

Fractures closest to the thumb: HEAL THE FASTEST.
Best source of blood

Fractures closer to the body (direction closer up the forearm) to the middle of the bone take LONGER.
Fractures to the Scaphoid at the tip (away from the thumb) take the LONGEST.

Middle and tip fracture spots may require surgery.

2. Age, If you are younger you heal much faster. Older people heal much slower.

3. Health, People with underlying health problems heal much slower. Those with auto-immune diseases, like diabetes, lupus, rheumatoid arthritis, etc. take far longer to heal. Any chronic inflammatory condition will impede and delay (block) healing time.

General Take Aways: Do not settle or close a personal (damage) claim to your hand, wrist, or arm injuries until you are determined to be cleared and stable by your doctors. Lingering problems can be a sign of long term permanent impairment that must be documented for you to be fully compensated.

Lawrence Newman, D.C., Esq.

Doctor of Chiropractic
Attorney and Counselor at Law

504 North Aurora Street
Ithaca, NY 14850