What Is a Hard Tissue Injury?

A hard tissue injury is an injury to the bone tissue. It involves the loss of continuity in the substance of a bone. Fractures and dislocations are the most common hard tissue injuries.

Hard tissue injuries are also called "broken bones" and "cracked bones." Some hard tissue injuries have completely broken bones that are separated into two or more pieces, such as comminuted fractures and simple fractures. Other injuries are less severe, although still painful, such as greenstick fractures and hairline fractures.

Hard tissue injuries typically occur in sports, particularly in extreme sports such as downhill skiing and equine sports. According to IvyRose Holistic, the general indications of a broken bone include swelling in the area of the injury, pain and tenderness, visibly protruding broken bone, unusual body shape in the affected area, hearing the sound of a breaking bone and feeling the bone break.

There are four main types of hard tissue injury. Closed fracture refers to a broken bone that is still within the skin. Open fracture refers to a broken bone with an end that protrudes through the skin. Complicated fracture refers to a cracked bone that also damages the surrounding structures or organs. Lastly, stress fracture refers to a bone that is not completely broken but still damaged by cracks along the length of the bone.