Scaphoid fractures are serious. The scaphoid is a small bone in the wrist that sits near the thumb, and it’s essential for full function and range of motion in the wrist. If it is injured or broken with a delayed diagnosis and treatment, this can increase the risk of osteoarthritis or lead to permanent injury that is potentially life changing.

At InjuryLawyers4U, our expert solicitors are experienced in helping clients claim for scaphoid injuries. Whether you’ve suffered your injury at work, in public, or the symptoms have worsened as a result of misdiagnosis, we can help you claim the compensation you deserve.

Scaphoid Fractures explained

The wrist joint in your hand is made up of several small bones including one known as the scaphoid. This bone is essential for the wrist to function properly, but it can easily be broken, especially in cases where a person trips and reaches their hands out to break the fall and prevent damage. This puts severe pressure on the wrist joint and often results in a scaphoid bone fracture.

There are many different types of accident or scenario in which a scaphoid bone fracture can occur. The most common are:

What are the symptoms of a scaphoid fracture?

Of course, if you’re not a qualified doctor or medical professional, it’s hard to identify if the injury you’ve suffered is a fractured scaphoid without the advice of somebody in the field. However, there are a number of signs that may indicate this type of injury:

  • Pain and swollen area around the injury
  • Noticeable flare in pain when moving the thumb or wrist
  • Deformity of the wrist
  • Noticeable pain when trying to grip objects

While it is difficult to identify a scaphoid bone fracture, if you trip over and use your hand to break your fall, pain and sensitivity under the thumb are common indicators that your injury is a scaphoid fracture.

How is a scaphoid fracture diagnosed?

Because of the sheer number of bones in the wrist, a scaphoid bone fracture is tricky for medical professionals to identify even when the patient is referred for an X-Ray. The fracture may be very small, or if the angle the hand is positioned incorrectly when the X-Ray is taken, it may still be tricky to detect. However, here are the steps that are taken to accurately diagnose a scaphoid fracture:

Initial check

  • Physical exam: The doctor will look for tenderness in a specific area called the anatomical snuffbox, located near your thumb.
  • Snuffbox pain: If pressing this spot hurts a lot, it could mean you have a scaphoid fracture.

Imaging tests

  • X-rays: This is usually the first step, but fractures can be hard to see right away.
  • Repeat X-rays: If medical professionals suspect a fracture but don’t see it, they might splint your wrist and take another X-ray in 10-14 days.
  • CT scan: This gives a detailed image and can show small or hidden fractures better.
  • MRI scan: An MRI scan is excellent for spotting bone swelling and can detect fractures early on.

Splint and second check

  • Sometimes, if the initial X-ray isn’t clear, your wrist might be put in a splint and re-examined later to see if the fracture becomes more visible.

Getting an accurate diagnosis is essential in order to receive proper treatment and avoid any long-term issues. If you’ve suffered a scaphoid fracture, Injury Lawyers 4U can help you claim the compensation you need to support your recovery.

How is a scaphoid fracture treated?

Usually, the correct treatment for this kind of fracture requires putting the wrist in plaster for anywhere from a month to 12 weeks. If this fails to heal the fracture, it may be that surgery is necessary to move the bone into the correct position. Typically, the recovery period is around three months for this kind of injury.

What if a scaphoid fracture is misdiagnosed?

If a scaphoid fracture is misdiagnosed, it can lead to serious consequences. If left untreated, you might notice the pain temporarily subsides but returns significantly when moving your wrist or lifting objects. In other cases, the pain from the injury may worsen over time instead of healing, leading to further complications. Here are some potential outcomes and risks that occur when a scaphoid fracture is misdiagnosed or left untreated:

  • Nonunion: This happens when the fractured bone fails to heal properly, causing ongoing pain and weakness in the wrist.
  • Avascular necrosis: The scaphoid bone has a poor blood supply, and a fracture can disrupt this, leading to bone death. This leads to chronic pain and limited wrist movement.
  • Degenerative arthritis: Untreated fractures can lead to arthritis in the wrist, causing long-term pain, stiffness, and reduced mobility.
  • Chronic pain: Persistent pain can develop when a scaphoid fracture doesn’t heal properly, which can greatly impact daily activity and quality of life.
  • Limited mobility: A poorly healed fracture can cause restricted wrist movement, affecting the ability to perform everyday tasks.
  • Need for surgery: In severe cases, surgery might be required to correct the misdiagnosis, involving bone grafts or the insertion of screws to stabilise the bone.

If you’ve suffered due to a misdiagnosed scaphoid fracture, Injury Lawyers 4U can help you claim the compensation you need. Our expert team will guide you through the process, ensuring you receive the support and justice you deserve. Contact us today to discuss your case and take the first step towards recovery.

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How much compensation can I receive for making a scaphoid fracture claim?

The amount of compensation you could receive for a scaphoid fracture will vary depending on the severity of your injury and its impact on your life. Injury compensation is typically divided into two categories: general damages and special damages.

General damages compensate for the non-financial impacts of your injury, such as:

  • Pain and suffering: The physical pain and emotional distress caused by the scaphoid fracture.
  • Loss of enjoyment of life: The reduction in your ability to participate in and enjoy daily activities and hobbies.

For example, if your scaphoid fracture causes significant pain and requires surgery, you could receive compensation for the ongoing discomfort and the lengthy recovery period. If the injury leads to permanent limitations, such as reduced wrist mobility, the compensation will likely be higher to reflect the long-term impact on your life.

To get an estimate of the compensation you might receive for general damages, use our compensation calculator.

Special damages cover the financial losses and expenses that you’ve incurred and will incur as a result of your injury, such as:

  • Medical expenses: Costs for treatment, surgery, physiotherapy, and any future medical care needed.
  • Loss of income: Compensation for time off work during recovery and any potential future loss of income if the injury affects your ability to work.
  • Travel expenses: Costs for travelling to and from medical appointments.
  • Care and assistance: Costs for any care you need during your recovery, even if provided by family members.
  • Rehabilitation costs: Expenses for physical therapy or occupational therapy to help regain full use of your wrist.

For instance, if you had to miss work for several months and had to pay a large sum for surgery and rehabilitation, you could claim these costs under special damages.

For a more accurate estimate that covers both general and special damages, and to discuss your specific circumstances around your scaphoid fracture, contact Injury Lawyers 4U. Our expert team is here to guide you through the process every step of the way.

What are the time limits for making a scaphoid fracture compensation claim?

If you suffer a scaphoid fracture from an accident that wasn’t your fault, generally, you have three years from the date of the injury to file a claim. This period is known as the limitation period. However, if your scaphoid fracture was misdiagnosed, the three-year period will typically start from the date you became aware of the misdiagnosis.

There are exceptions to these time limits. If the injured person is under 18, the three-year limitation period begins on their 18th birthday, allowing them to make a claim until they turn 21. For those who lack the mental capacity to manage their own affairs, the three-year limit is paused until they regain capacity.

If the injury resulted from a criminal act, you typically have two years from the date of the incident to make a claim through the Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority (CICA).

Though there is usually a three-year time limit, it’s worth starting the claim process as close to the time when the injury took place as you can. Not only does this make it easier to gather as much evidence as possible, but it also means you’ll get the help you need with any associated costs earlier.

Why InjuryLawyers4U?

Wherever you suffered a scaphoid bone fracture, nobody deserves to have their life turned upside down by another person or organisation’s dereliction of duty – least of all when the injury is compounded by a misdiagnosis or general negligence of a medical professional. 

Accidents such as this can result in time off work for treatment and recovery, loss of earnings, and in the worst cases can lead to permanent pain and limited movement . Our commitment is to help you win the compensation you deserve to the best of our ability. Here’s why we’re best placed to fight your case:

If you or somebody you know has suffered a scaphoid fracture, get in touch with our injury claim experts and we will help. We operate a no win no fee policy, which means you don’t pay any upfront costs, and we’ll let you know right away if we think you have a case that’s likely to be successful. Contact us by phone on 0333 400 4445, or if you’d prefer, fill in the contact form and our expert solicitors will arrange a call at a time that suits you.