GUSTOIMAGES / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY GUSTOIMAGES / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Pinned leg fracture. Coloured side view X-ray of a metal plate and screws (yellow) in the lower right leg of a male patient with a double fracture (green). Both the thicker tibia (shin bone) and the thinner fibula (left) were broken in the same place. At bottom is the foot. Stitches (yellow loops) are also seen. Such fractures are usually caused by severe force, such as a fall or a car accident. The plate was surgically screwed to the tibia to immobilise the bone once the fractured ends had been realigned, making sure that the break fuses properly. In an adult a weight-bearing bone such as the tibia may take up to six months to knit together completely. See M330/1680 for the fracture before treatment.
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