We’ve been proudly serving the Hudson Valley since 1971. Over the years, Orthopedic Associates has built our reputation on providing superior patient care. By offering our patients on-site custom bracing services we are committed to your complete rehabilitation. Our Bracing Service supports surgical procedures, nonsurgical rehabilitation and pain management with its superior products and care. By offering this service at all of our locations, we can offer our patients the convenience and accessibility they deserve.
Casts and splints support and protect injured bones and soft tissue. When you break a bone, our doctors will be ready to put the pieces back together in the right position. We offer walk-in, orthopedic, urgent care services in our Poughkeepsie, East Fishkill, Kingston and New Windsor locations and provide casting services at all five of our locations to provide you with the best, accessible care when you need it.
After you have adjusted to your splint or cast for a few days, it is important to keep it in good condition. This will help your recovery.
- Keep your splint or cast dry. Moisture weakens plaster and damp padding next to the skin can cause irritation. Use two layers of plastic or purchase waterproof shields to keep your splint or cast dry while you shower or bathe. Even if the cast is covered, do not submerge it or hold it under running water. A small pinhole in the cast cover can cause the injury to get soaked.
- Walking casts. Do not walk on a “walking cast” until it is completely dry and hard. It takes about one hour for fiberglass, and two to three days for plaster to become hard enough to walk on.
- Avoid dirt. Keep dirt, sand, and powder away from the inside of your splint or cast.
- Padding. Do not pull out the padding from your splint or cast.
- Itching. Do not stick objects such as coat hangers inside the splint or cast to scratch itching skin. Do not apply powders or deodorants to itching skin. If itching persists, contact your doctor.
- Skin. Inspect the skin around the cast. If your skin becomes red or raw around the cast, contact your doctor.
- Inspect the cast regularly. If it becomes cracked or develops soft spots, contact us.
It is very important to keep the swelling down. This will lessen pain and help your injury heal. To help reduce swelling:
- ELEVATE: It is very important to elevate your injured arm or leg for the first 24 to 72 hours. Prop your injured arm or leg up above your heart by putting it on pillows or some other support. You will have to recline if the splint or cast is on your leg. Elevation allows clear fluid and blood to drain “downhill” to your heart.
- EXERCISE: Move your uninjured, but swollen fingers or toes gently and often. Moving them often will prevent stiffness.
- ICE: Apply ice to the splint or cast. Place the ice in a dry plastic bag or ice pack and loosely wrap it around the splint or cast at the level of the injury. Ice that is packed in a rigid container and touches the cast at only one point will not be effective.
- Increased pain and the feeling that the splint or cast is too tight. This may be caused by swelling.
- Numbness and tingling in your hand or foot. This may be caused by too much pressure on the nerves.
- Burning and stinging. This may be caused by too much pressure on the skin.
- Excessive swelling below the cast. This may mean the cast is slowing your blood circulation.
- Loss of active movement of toes or fingers. This requires an urgent evaluation by your doctor.
Your doctor will use a cast saw to remove your cast. The saw vibrates, but does not rotate. If the blade of the saw touches the padding inside the hard shell of the cast, the padding will vibrate with the blade and will protect your skin. Cast saws make noise and may feel “hot” from friction, but will not harm you – “their bark is worse than their bite.”
If you do feel pain while the cast is being removed, let us know and we will be able to make adjustments.