Tibial Plateau Fracture
with Rehab
ExitCare ImageThe tibial plateau is the top surface of the shinbone (tibia) and is part of the knee joint. A tibial plateau fracture is a break that occurs in this portion of the shinbone. Tibial plateau fractures are fairly common. This injury is also known as a "bumper injury," because it often occurs when a person is hit by the bumper of a car.
SYMPTOMS
CAUSES
Tibial plateau fractures occur when a force is placed on the bone that is greater than it can withstand. Common causes of injury include:
RISK INCREASES WITH:
PREVENTION
PROGNOSIS
If treated properly, tibial plateau fractures usually heal.
RELATED COMPLICATIONS
TREATMENT
Treatment first involves the use of ice and medicine to reduce pain and inflammation. If the bone fragments are out of alignment (displaced fracture), immediate realignment of the bone (reduction) by a trained professional is required. Fractures that cannot be realigned by hand, or are open (bones poking through the skin), may require surgery to hold the fracture in place with screws, pins, and plates. Once the bone is aligned, the knee should be restrained to allow for healing. After restraint, it is important to perform strengthening and stretching exercises to help regain strength and a full range of motion. These exercises may be completed at home or with a therapist.
MEDICATION
COLD THERAPY
Cold treatment (icing) relieves pain and reduces inflammation. Cold treatment should be applied for 10 to 15 minutes every 2 to 3 hours, and immediately after activity that aggravates your symptoms. Use ice packs or an ice massage.
SEEK MEDICAL CARE IF:
EXERCISES
RANGE OF MOTION (ROM) AND STRETCHING EXERCISES - Tibial Plateau Fracture
These exercises may help you when beginning to rehabilitate your injury. Your symptoms may go away with or without further involvement from your physician, physical therapist or athletic trainer. While completing these exercises, remember:
ExitCare ImageRANGE OF MOTION - Knee Flexion and Extension, Active-Assisted
Repeat __________ times. Complete __________ times per day.
ExitCare ImageRANGE OF MOTION - Knee Flexion, Active
Repeat __________ times. Complete this exercise __________ times per day.
ExitCare ImageSTRETCH - Knee Flexion, Supine
Repeat __________ times. Complete this stretch __________ times per day.
ExitCare ImageSTRETCH – Hamstrings, Supine
Repeat __________ times. Complete this stretch __________ times per day.
ExitCare ImageSTRETCH - Hamstrings, Doorway
Repeat __________ times. Complete this stretch __________ times per day.
ExitCare ImageSTRETCH - Knee Extension Sitting
Repeat __________ times. Complete this stretch __________ times per day.
*Your physician, physical therapist or athletic trainer may instruct you to place a __________ weight on your thigh, just above your kneecap, to deepen the stretch.
ExitCare ImageSTRETCH - Knee Extension, Prone
Repeat __________ times. Complete this __________ times per day.
ExitCare ImageSTRETCH - Quadriceps, Prone
Repeat __________ times. Complete this stretch __________ times per day.
STRENGTHENING EXERCISES - Tibial Plateau Fracture
These exercises may help you when beginning to recover from your injury. Your symptoms may go away with or without further involvement from your physician, physical therapist or athletic trainer. While completing these exercises, remember:
ExitCare ImageSTRENGTH - Quadriceps, Isometrics
Repeat __________ times. Complete this exercise __________ times per day.
ExitCare ImageSTRENGTH - Quadriceps, Short Arcs
Repeat __________ times. Complete this exercise __________ times per day.
OPTIONAL ANKLE WEIGHTS: Begin with ____________________, but DO NOT exceed ____________________. Increase in 1 pound/ 0.5 kilogram increments.
ExitCare ImageSTRENGTH - Quadriceps, Straight Leg Raises
Quality counts! Watch for signs that the quadriceps muscle is working, to make sure you are strengthening the correct muscles and not "cheating" by substituting with healthier muscles.
Repeat __________ times. Complete this exercise __________ times per day.
ExitCare ImageSTRENGTH - Hamstring, Isometrics
Repeat __________ times. Complete this exercise __________ times per day.
ExitCare ImageSTRENGTH - Hamstring, Curls
Repeat __________ times. Complete this exercise __________ times per day.
OPTIONAL ANKLE WEIGHTS: Begin with ____________________, but DO NOT exceed ____________________. Increase in __________ increments.
ExitCare ImageSTRENGTH - Hip Abductors, Straight Leg Raises
Be aware of your form throughout the entire exercise, so that you exercise the correct muscles. Poor form means that you are not strengthening the correct muscles.
Repeat __________ times. Complete this exercise __________ times per day.
ExitCare ImageSTRENGTH - Hip Extensors, Bridge
Repeat __________ times. Complete this exercise __________ times per day.
ExitCare ImageSTRENGTH – Quadriceps, Squats
Repeat __________ times. Complete this exercise __________ times per day.
 
This information is not intended to replace advice given to you by your health care provider. Make sure you discuss any questions you have with your health care provider.
 
Document Released: 12/18/2006 Document Revised: 03/11/2013 Document Reviewed: 04/01/2010
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