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Falling onto an outstretched hand

On Behalf of | Jul 10, 2023 | Personal Injury

Thousands of Georgia residents injure themselves each year. These range from minor strains and cuts to serious injuries with lifelong consequences. Certain behaviors like driving or playing contact sports are well-known to increase injury risk, but you can potentially injure yourself at just about any time and while doing nearly anything.

One less heralded but extremely common type of injury is referred to as a FOOSH injury. Standing for “falling onto an outstretched hand,” FOOSH injuries are caused in a variety of ways, from sporting mishaps to slips and falls. These types of injuries often appear innocuous at first glance, but they can be severe, especially if untreated.

How do FOOSH injuries tend to happen?

Certain types of people are more likely to suffer FOOSH injuries. Anyone who plays a sport involving running and physical contact – like soccer, football, basketball and so on – is more likely than average to experience a fall leading to a FOOSH injury.

Older people also tend to be more vulnerable to FOOSH injuries, as their balance tends to be slightly worse and they also may have more brittle bones, leading to a higher chance of a fracture. Those with medical conditions causing dizziness or loss of consciousness are also at higher risk.

But anyone is potentially at risk for a FOOSH injury, as it’s possible to fall down at any moment while standing, walking or running.

Consequences of a FOOSH injury

The two most common FOOSH injuries are bruising and broken bones. Bruising tends to be of relatively minor seriousness, but broken bones can require immobilizing casts and even surgery for serious breaks. Not treating a fractured bone can lead to long-term issues like arthritis.

It’s also possible to dislocate your shoulder while falling, an intensely painful injury. The shoulder needs to be re-set into the socket and the arm stabilized to heal properly.

Injuries involving falling onto an outstretched hand don’t get a lot of publicity, but they’re very common and can happen under just about any circumstances. Not every fall results in a serious injury, but many such injuries require urgent medical treatment and care.