Limb injury symptoms

Athletes with a limb injury complain of the following:

Localised pain - May be distressed but can clearly identify what hurts.

Reluctance to move - Movement of an injured limb will increase pain, or they may be unable.

Swelling - Bleeding in and around injured tissue causes swelling. This restricts movement and causes further pain.

Deformity - Usually only with a fracture or a dislocation. Dramatic to look at but don’t forget DR ABC.

When dealing with someone with a deformed or dramatic looking limb injury, it is important not to be distracted from the DR ABC assessment. Limb injuries can be dramatic, but it remains most important to make sure the player has an open airway and is breathing normally.