Broken Bone (Fracture): Symptoms & Signs

Medically Reviewed on 9/15/2020

A broken bone, or fracture, is a break in any of the bones of the body. There are different types of bone fractures, depending on the extent of the break and the positioning of the bone fragments afterward.

Signs and symptoms of broken bones include

Other associated signs and symptoms may be related to the injury and can include

  • bleeding,
  • physical deformity, and
  • lack of functionality.

In open fractures, fragments of bone break through the skin and are visible. Loss of height is a symptom of compression fractures of the vertebrae. The most common broken bones include the clavicle (collarbone), the forearm (radius and ulna), the wrist, the ankle and the hip.

Causes of broken bones

Trauma or injury is the most common cause of broken bones. Conditions and diseases that weaken bone, such as osteoporosis, may increase a person's risk of developing a bone fracture.

Other broken bone (fracture) symptoms and signs

  • Bleeding
  • Bruising at the Involved Site
  • Lack of Functionality
  • Pain
  • Physical Deformity
  • Swelling
  • Tenderness


Emotional trauma is best described as a psychological response to a deeply distressing or life-threatening experience. See Answer

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Jameson, J. Larry, et al. Harrison's Principles of Internal Medicine, 20th Ed. New York: McGraw-Hill Education, 2018.