Splint (medicine)
A splint is a device used for support or immobilization of limb
Limb (anatomy)
A limb is a jointed, or prehensile , appendage of the human or other animal body....

s or of the spine
Vertebral column
In human anatomy, the vertebral column is a column usually consisting of 24 articulating vertebrae, and 9 fused vertebrae in the sacrum and the coccyx. It is situated in the dorsal aspect of the torso, separated by intervertebral discs...

It can be used:
  • By the emergency medical services
    Emergency medical services
    Emergency medical services are a type of emergency service dedicated to providing out-of-hospital acute medical care and/or transport to definitive care, to patients with illnesses and injuries which the patient, or the medical practitioner, believes constitutes a medical emergency...

     or by volunteer first responders, to immobilize a fractured limb before the transportation; it is then a temporary immobilization;
  • By allied health professionals such as occupational therapist
    Occupational therapist
    An occupational therapist is trained in the practice of occupational therapy. The role of an occupational therapist is to work with a client to help them achieve a fulfilled and satisfied state in life through the use of "purposeful activity or interventions designed to achieve functional...

    s, physiotherapists and orthotists, to immobilize an articulation (e.g. the knee) that can be freed while not standing (e.g. during sleep).
  • By athletic trainers to immobilize an injured bone or joint to facilitate safer transportation of the injured person.
  • By emergency room physicians to stabilize fractures or sprains until follow-up appointment with an Orthopedist.

In most ERs, a fibreglass splinting material, called Orthoglass, is commonly used for several reasons.
  • It is clean, unlike most plaster splinting materials
  • It comes in rolls and can be easily measured and cut according to the patient's dimensions.
  • It comes pre-padded, which saves time and energy trying to roll out padding.
  • It dries in about 20 minutes, and there are no risks for burns involved.

A nasal splint helps control bleeding and provide support in certain cases where the nose bone is broken.

Commonly Used Splints

  • Sugar Tong
  • Ulnar Gutter
  • Volar Wrist Splint
  • Thumb Spica
  • Posterior Lower Leg
  • Posterior Full Leg
  • Posterior Elbow
  • Finger Splints
  • Ankle Stirrup
  • Shin splint

Assisted cough technique

Commonly used after surgery to provide support to an incised area and decrease pain on coughing.

While the patient attempts to cough the area is braced by the patient (or assistant) using pillow, folded blanket or extended hand placed over the incision.

Gentle pressure is applied for bracing only during the attempt to cough.


Different forms of the splint have been used sparingly throughout history, however, the splint gained great popularity as a medical device during the French and Indian War
French and Indian War
The French and Indian War is the common American name for the war between Great Britain and France in North America from 1754 to 1763. In 1756, the war erupted into the world-wide conflict known as the Seven Years' War and thus came to be regarded as the North American theater of that war...

. Generally consisting of two small wooden planks, the splint was commonly tied around the fracture with rope, cloth, or even rawhide during frontier times in American history. To this day, the splint is commonly used to secure small fractures and breaks. (See, for example, Henry Gassett Davis
Henry Gassett Davis
Henry Gassett Davis was an orthopedic surgeon.He founded the traction school of orthopedic surgery and created the first splint for traction and protection of the hip joint....


See also

  • Spica splint
    Spica splint
    A spica splint is a type of orthopedic splint used to immobilize the thumb and/or wrist while allowing other digits freedom to move. It is used to provide support for thumb injuries , gamekeeper's thumb, osteoarthritis, de Quervain's syndrome, scaphoid fracture, thumb sprains, post-operative use,...

  • SAM Splint
    SAM Splint
    The SAM Splint is a compact, lightweight, highly-versatile device designed for immobilizing bone and soft tissue injuries in emergency settings. It consists of a layer of strips of soft aluminum, with a polyethylene closed-cell foam coating.The SAM Splint was invented by Dr...

  • STAT Splint
  • Traction splint
    Traction splint
    A traction splint most commonly refers to a splinting device that uses straps attaching over the pelvis or hip as an anchor, a metal rod to mimic normal bone stability and limb length, and a mechanical device to apply traction to the limb...

  • Vacuum splint
    Vacuum splint
    A vacuum splint is a device like a small vacuum mattress that is used in emergency medicine as a temporary splint. Vacuum splints operate by extracting air from the splint itself to enable the thousands of polystyrene balls inside the splint to mold around the injured body part similar to a...

  • Cervical collar
    Cervical collar
    A cervical collar is an orthopedic medical device used to support a patient's neck and head. It is also used by emergency personnel for victims of traumatic head or neck injuries, and can be used to treat chronic medical conditions....

  • Extrication splint (KED, Kendrick's extrication device)
  • Long spine board
    Long spine board
    A spinal board, also known as a long spine board , longboard, spineboard, or backboard, is a patient handling device used primarily in pre-hospital trauma care designed to provide rigid support during movement of a patient with suspected spinal or limb injuries...

  • Orthopedic surgery
    Orthopedic surgery
    Orthopedic surgery or orthopedics is the branch of surgery concerned with conditions involving the musculoskeletal system...

  • Buddy wrapping
    Buddy wrapping
    Buddy wrapping or buddy taping is the act of bandaging a damaged finger or toe together with a healthy one. The bandage is usually stiff, not allowing the digits to move; the healthy digit acts as a splint, keeping the damaged one in a natural position for healing...

External links

The source of this article is wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.  The text of this article is licensed under the GFDL.