Child Injury Lawyer in Alabama
Nurse Maid's Elbow & Dislocation of Radial Head in Child
Frequently, children who are at day care go unsupervised and can be injured by either other children or by playground equipment or even being swing in circles by day care employees. One such injury that can occur is when a child's arm is pulled with great force from the shoulder with great force.
Radial subluxation (nurse maid's elbow) is a very common dislocation of the radial head in children. A case of swinging by the arms as mentioned above is a "textbook" example of nurse maid's elbow in terms of the method of injury and the symptoms experienced. Most children with this injury have been grasped by the wrist and pulled upward or swung around in play. The injury also occurs if an adult jerks a child's aim (e.g., if a child misbehaves in a store) or if a child decides to slump down in protest while an adult is holding her hand or wrist. Since the radial head is not fully formed in children before the age of 4, it is very easy to pull the immature cartilaginous part of the radius out of the surrounding ligaments. Ironically, it is also due to the immaturity of the child's radius that it can be easily put back into joint in most cases.
The lawyers at McAleer Law have assisted families whose children have suffered injuries at the hand of careless individuals and corporations. A Birmingham personal injury lawyer at McAleer Law can assist you in your time of need when a child has suffered in an injury claim.
The elbow joint is formed by the humerus (arm bone), the radius (the smaller, laterally placed bone of the forearm) and the ulna (the medial and stronger bone of the forearm).
The treatment of the majority of cases of nurse maid's elbow or radial subluxation is gentle manipulation of the forearm and palm from pronation into supination while applying gentle pressure on the head of the radius in an upward direction. A palpable snap may be felt as the radius returns to the annular ring. If the radius does not return to its proper articulation, another attempt is often made. It should be noted, however, that there may be a need for radiographic study which may include ultrasound or an MRI since the cartilaginous developing head of the radius is not yet ossified. The pain usually subsides as soon as the joint is in place. If pain persists, as it may if joint reduction was delayed, some physicians will recommend a mild analgesic.
The prognosis for radial dislocation in a child is usually very good. Most children exhibit some tenderness in the elbow region, but often will stop crying and return to play within minutes. Repeated dislocations in the same child most often are the cause of lasting injury or disability. Child abuse is always a concern in these cases and should be considered when the circumstances seem to warrant it. In some cases, there is an occult or hidden injury to the ulna, e.g., a fracture of the distal part of the ulna. If this is the case, the radial head may again dislocate within a few hours. Further, often surgical, intervention is possibly warranted.
When you or a loved one has suffered any type of childhood injury caused by the carelessness of another, contact an Alabama child injury lawyer at McAleer Law - 251-341-0116.