ZocdocAnswersI fell on my left side. Do I have a fractured bone?

Question

I fell on my left side. Do I have a fractured bone?

I fell on my left side this evening as I slipped. I hit the area of my thigh/hip. I got up almost immediately and I didn't feel any particular pain. Except when I got up to walk as I left my seat in the subway, I couldn't put weight on my left leg. I still managed to walk slowly with a bit of difficulty and then when I got up another time, it got worse. I could barely walk as it hurt me a lot so I had to walk very slowly limping. Now when I don't move, even when I'm standing I don't feel anything. Moving my feet also doesn't hurt. It hurts a bit when I try to lift it or move it. My left side isn't swelling and I can't see any bruises, i just feel pain inside my thigh. The pain isn't excessive, I just can't force my left leg and I can't put any weight on it. I'm wondering if I have a fractured bone or if this is only temporary. I can't see a doctor tonight and I have school tomorrow. Thank you!

Answer

I am sorry to hear about your pain, and it sounds like it is having a severe impact on your daily activities. Unfortunately, it is not possible to rule out a fracture without performing a thorough physical exam. I encourage you to schedule an appointment with a primary care doctor. After evaluating you, the doctor will be able to make recommendations on treatment and any additional testing that is necessary. In general, after significant trauma, pain may not peak until several hours after the injury. This is because the inflammation takes some time to fully progress. In someone who is unable to bear any weight after a leg injury, it is important to rule out fracture. You may have suffered damage to the femur, or thigh bone, itself. The injury may be localized to your pelvis or the greater trochanter, which is the portion of the leg bone that inserts into the hip socket. Injury to this area often localizes to the inner thigh. It is also possible you fractured the lesser trochanter, which is a portion of the femur in the lateral hip. Treatment can vary from conservative management to surgery. I strongly encourage you to see a primary care doctor who can help determine the best course of action.

This answer is for general informational purposes only and is not a substitute for professional medical advice.

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