A tibial plateau fracture is a break in the top of the bone that forms the bottom of the knee joint (tibia or shin bone). The lower end of the thigh bone (femur) forms the upper surface of the knee joint. The top of the tibia has a flat, smooth surface (tibial plateau). This part of the shin bone is made of softer bone than the end of the femur bone. If a strong force pushes the femur down into the tibial plateau, the tibial plateau can collapse or break away at the edges.
Two types of fractures can occur:
• A nondisplaced fracture means that the broken piece or pieces of your tibial plateau have not moved out of their normal position.
• A displaced fracture means that one or more pieces of your tibial…show more content… • People with a history of bone infections.
• Older people with a condition that causes weak bones (osteoporosis).
Symptoms begin immediately after the injury. They may include:
• Pain that is worse when you bear weight on your injured leg.
• Swelling around your knee.
• Bruising around your knee.
For a displaced fracture, other common symptoms include:
• A noticeable ridge or depression under your knee (deformity).
• Inability to walk or bear weight on your injured side.
This condition may be diagnosed based on:
• Your symptoms and a physical exam.
• X-rays of your knee to confirm the diagnosis.
• CT scan or MRI to see if the bone has moved out of place and if there are any broken-off pieces of bone. These tests can also be used to make sure there are no other injuries to your knee.
Treatment for this condition depends on the severity of the injury. Treatment for a nondisplaced fracture may involve:
• Wearing a hinged brace to support your leg while it heals.
• Using crutches, a scooter, a walker, or a wheelchair so you can move around without using your injured leg to support your body…show more content… • Move your toes and ankle often to avoid stiffness and to lessen swelling.
• Raise (elevate) the injured area above the level of your heart while you are sitting or lying down.
• Do not drive or operate heavy machinery while taking prescription pain medicine.
• Ask your health care provider when it is safe to drive if you have a brace on a leg that you use for driving.
• Do not use the injured limb to support your body weight until your health care provider says that you can. Use crutches, a scooter, a walker, or a wheelchair as told by your health care provider.
• Return to your normal activities as told by your health care provider. Ask your health care provider what activities are safe for you.
• Do exercises as told by your health care provider.
• Do not use any tobacco products, such as cigarettes, chewing tobacco, and e-cigarettes. Tobacco can delay bone healing. If you need help quitting, ask your health care provider.
• Take over-the-counter and prescription medicines only as told by your health care provider.
• Keep all follow-up visits as told by your health care provider. This is