Humerus fracture in neonate

Case contributed by Dr Maulik S Patel


Neonate with excessive crying and restricted right arm movement for the last few hours after one of his daily neonatal massage.

Patient Data

Age: 4 weeks
Gender: Male

There is an incomplete fracture of the distal humeral diaphysis. There is no dislocation or bone lesion or periosteal reaction. The arm shows diffuse soft tissue swelling.

Case Discussion

The case shows humerus fracture as a result of overzealous neonatal massage.

A non-accidental injury should be considered in any non-ambulant child with a long bone fracture. In this case, two different persons (radiographer and referring pediatrician) talked to the parents as well as one of the grandparents, and the etiology of massage as a cause of fracture is very certain. The pediatricians in our institution do report fractures as a consequence of infant massage.

Check out a companion case showing a femur fracture in a neonate: rID: 72935

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