Treatment and Services
What is the Fracture Program?
The Fracture Program serves children and teens who have fractures or other serious injuries, such as fractures with bad skin wounds or concussions. Many of the patients we see were hurt in sports or other active play. Their injuries are not the same as injuries in adults because of their youth and potential for growth. Their treatment also differs greatly from the treatment of similar adult injuries. We are experts in understanding these differences.
Your child is still growing, well into their teens, so their body can be damaged in ways that an adult body can't. Growth plates are a special concern. Damage to these parts of a bone can affect a young person's growth permanently.
Children's fractures heal differently than adults' fractures, too. Sometimes a child's crooked fracture will straighten out as the child grows. This could mean your child needs only a cast, while an adult with a similar injury might need surgery. Predicting whether a child's bone will straighten is very difficult.
The surgeons, doctors, nurses and others in our Fracture Program are specially trained to diagnose and treat pediatric and adolescent injuries. Patients come to us from around the country for care. The first treatment your child receives for a fracture is the most important, so call us as soon as possible after their injury.
Seattle Children's Fracture Clinic
The Fracture Program now offers a Friday Fracture Clinic for children or teens who have fractures. The Fracture Clinic provides dedicated, quick access for patients who need evaluation, treatment or follow-up care for fractures.
Fridays from 8 a.m. to noon
Call 206-987-2109 to schedule an appointment or learn more.
Who’s on the team?
How will the Fracture Program meet my needs?
Your child has the best chance of a good result after an injury if their care is tailored to them. There are always several treatment options to choose from. The treatment that's right for one child may not be right for your child. This depends on many factors, such as where your child's injury is; how serious it is; whether a growth plate was injured; and your child's age, weight and personality.
The Fracture Program team will carefully assess your child. Then we'll talk with you about the options and recommend a treatment plan. We specialize in knowing which treatments are most likely to have the best results for kids. We work with providers from many areas of Seattle Children's to give your child the care they need, from a splint or cast to complex surgery to rehabilitation.
Along with treating the injury, our team considers all your child's and family's needs. We help with a range of issues, including:
- Telling your child about their injury and treatment in a way they understand
- Dealing with day-to-day matters, such as how your child can use the toilet or ride in the car while they recover
- Helping your child feel better, physically and psychologically
- Coping if your child needs to stay home from school
- Meeting your child's needs when they are ready to return to school
As your child gets better, we'll see them to check their progress and watch for any problems that may develop. We're experts not only in treating injuries when they happen, but also in preventing and dealing with effects that can occur later. In our Fracture Program, your child will get seamless care, even as their needs change.
Who's on the team?
Members of our Orthopedics and Sports Medicine team will treat your child's fracture, growth-plate injury, joint injury or other trauma.
Much of the fracture care at Seattle Children's occurs in the emergency room, operating room and orthopedic clinic. Mark C. Dales, MD, chief of trauma, directs our Fracture Program, which specializes in children's fractures and recovery. Other providers include: