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Thread: Do quads bones heal faster than able body's bones?

  1. #1

    Do quads bones heal faster than able body's bones?

    Matt's orthopedic surgeon he saw today said that his broken humerus, as well as any para or quads bones, heal quicker then most AB's bones do, and he couldn't tell us why, it was just his experience with it. He figured Matt would be ready for physical therapy on his arm in 4 weeks. He then said that Matt's bones were more brittle because of bone loss (he is on Actonel)which is why it broke in the first place. How can weaker bones heal faster? Anyone, maybe Dr. Young, heard of this and know why?

    Thanks, Erika

  2. #2
    That is certainly not supported either by the research literature or by our practice. In fact, we see a significant amount of fractures, and nearly all heal slower than in an AB, and often have a failure to heal at all (non-union, pseudarthrosis).

    Nearly everyone with SCI has osteoporosis below the level of their SCI. In those with high tetraplegia, this can include the arm bones, but the osteoporosis is usually worse in the femur and tibia. Christopher Reeve had a fracture of his humerus which he got during a transfer in the first few years after his injury. There is no good evidence that the use of drugs such as Actonel or other etidronates or the use of calcium supplements helps to prevent or treat osteoporosis in people with SCI.

    Serial Xrays should be used to determine when healing is sufficient to allow range of motion exercises, and then it should be started very gradually and gently.

    Regardless, I hope you are following up with the hospital on this injury. It should not just be "let go".

    (KLD)

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