Bone Fractures
Photos and Images of Broken Bones

Health Topics

List of Pictures

Types of bone fractures
Compound (open) fractures
Simple (closed) fracture
Spiral fracture
Hairline fracture
Bones Of The Face
Back Bone
Arms And Leg Bones

See also: Bones Of The Body and Bone And Joint Problems

Types Of Bone Fractures

types of bone fractures

A bone fracture refers to both a slightly cracked bone and a broken bone. A bone can crack or break in many ways. Most fractures are caused by a car accident or bad fall. In old age, people suffering from a bone disorder like osteoporosis are more prone to fractures (it takes less impact to damage the bone because the bones have weakened).

Compound (Open) Fracture

A open or compound fracture is where the bone breaks and penetrates tissues in the body. It may penetrate tissue below the skin (next image below), or it may protrude through the skin (as in this ankle break). This type of injury needs immediate treatment because of the risk of infection. Surgery is usually required. Open fractures usually result from high-impact injuries such as car crashes or falls from heights.

Compound (Open Fracture)

Here the broken bone has broken through tissues below the surface of the skin, but has not broken through the skin itself.


closed fracture

Simple (Closed) Fracture

A simple fracture is where the bone has broken cleanly and has not damaged or penetrated surrounding tissue. This type of break will heal much faster than a compound fracture. This break can be transverse: which means straight across the bone; oblique: which means at an angle or spiral: at an angle that is twisted (see spiral break below).

Spiral Fracture

Fracture caused by a twisting motion which results in a spiral break. Sometimes referred to as a torsion fracture.

Hairline Fracture

A fine crack that appears in the bone due to overuse. Commonly seen in athletes, particularly in the foot and shin bones (where it is also known as a stress fracture).




Cranial bones

Front View
Frontal bone: This bone forms the forehead and upper eye cavity. It is joined to the parietal bones by the coronal suture.
Vomer: A thin flat bone which separates the nasal cavities and articulates at the top with the ethmoid bone.
Mandible: The jaw bone - it forms the jaw, the chin and the side of the face. It contains lower teeth and it is the only moveable bone in the face.
Maxilla: This is the upper jaw and contains the upper teeth, the roof of the mouth, the orbital cavity and the outer wall of the nasal cavity.
Zygomatic: Cheek bones.
Palatine: Inverted L shaped bones, they form the bottom of the nose and eye cavities, and the wall of the roof of the mouth (hence the name palate).


(Also known as backbone or vertebral column)

Backbone diagram

The spine is the central part of the skeleton. It supports the head and encloses and protects the spinal cord. It is constructed to have great strength, but with a moderate degree of mobility. It is made of 33 vertebrae - although several are fused so it consists of 26 individual bones.






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