SCOTT CAMAZINE / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY SCOTT CAMAZINE / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Broken arm. Coloured X-ray of a compound fracture of the radius and ulna in the forearm of a 21 year old man. The radius is the upper of the two arm bones, with the bones of the hand at left. Both the radius and ulna are fractured, and the fracture has left each bone with sharp broken ends (highlighted in red) which may pierce the skin. This is known as a compound fracture. The larger radius is aligned with the thumb of the hand. Most fractures are caused by sudden injury that exerts more force on the bone than it can withstand. X-rays can confirm the diagnosis. This fracture may be repaired by surgery to realign and immobilise the bones.
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