Growth Plates Fracture and Injuries – Get your Facts Right

What is a Growth Plate?

The growth plate is probably known as the epiphyseal plate or physis usually grows near the lone bone endings in adolescents and children. Growth plates are generally the area of growing tissue. Every long bone has at least two growth plates where each one of them is at one end each. Also, it determines the length and shape of the bone in future. When a proper growth is complete, a solid bone is used to replace growth plates. Majorly, the growth plates in the foot are widely used than other injury areas.

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Who gets Growth plates fracture?

These injuries usually occur in adolescent and children’s. The Growth plate is the weakest section of the growing skeleton which is even weaker than the tendons and ligaments which helps in the connection between bones and muscles.

If a child is at its growing age, a serious injury will damage the growth plates rather than the ligament which helps in stabilizing the joint. Further, a growth plate injury in a child can be compared with a sprain in an adult.

On a higher note, Injuries which occur to the growth plate are all known as the growth plates fracture. Almost 15% of the childhood factors are its combination.

Growth Plate Injuries according to Age Group

Growth plate injuries occur a number of times in boys rather than in girls.

  • Growth plate closure age for boys: 14 to 16-year-old boys
  • Growth plate closure age for girls: 11 to 13-year old girls

Talking about older girls, they experience these injuries on a lesser basis as their bodies mature at a faster pace than boys. Thus, their bones finish development at a faster rate and their bones are replaced by a solid, stronger bone.

According to a research, nearly half of the growth plate injuries occur in the lower end of the outer bone. Also, these injuries occur on a frequent basis in the leg (tibia, fibula). They can also occur in the foot, hip bone or ankle.

What is the cause of Growth Plate Injuries?

The Growth plate injuries are caused by the occurrence of two events. In the acute event, it is caused by either a fall or a hard blow to the limb. In the case of a chronic event, it can result from overuse of those bones to a greater extent. For example, Sportsperson who are playing basketball, gymnasium people or such kind of sports can have growth plates fracture.

Additional reasons for growth plate injuries

  • Child Abuse can be one of the reasons for growth plate injury. In this, abusing can cause the skeletal injuries which can be devastating if not taken care of.
  • Radiation which is used for treating cancers can pose some serious damage to the growth plate. Also, chemotherapy resulted in the weakening of the bones to a major extent.
  • A child’s who are suffering from neurological disorders usually go through muscular imbalance or sensory deficit. In such cases, Growth plates in the ankle are used as a backup in case of an injury.

Hope the facts are clear now.

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