Skull and Facial Fracture
(Head Injury; Open Skull Fracture; Closed Skull Fracture; Fracture, Skull and Facial; Maxillary Fracture; Le Fort Fracture; Mandible Fracture; Zygomatic Fracture)
DefinitionSkull and facial fractures are broken bones of the head and face. Injury can result in damage to the brain.Types of skull fractures include:
- Simple—the bone is broken, but skin is intact
- Linear—the break is in a thin, straight line through the depth of the skull bone
- Depressed—the bone of the skull is crushed and pushed in toward the brain
- Comminuted—a complex fracture with bone splintering and tearing of the skin
- Maxillary fractures involve the upper jaw. They are classified as Le Fort I-V fractures based on their specific location on the maxillary bone.
- Mandible fractures involve the lower jaw.
- Zygomatic fractures involve the cheekbones.
- Closed—the fracture does not break the skin
- Open—the fracture breaks through the skin
|Fractures in the Zygomatic Arch and Orbit|
|© Nucleus Medical Media, Inc.|
CausesSkull and/or facial fractures are caused by direct trauma to your head. Trauma can be caused by:
- Car, motorcycle, or pedestrian accident
- Blunt force trauma
- Penetrating trauma
- Domestic violence, child or elder abuse
- Sports injury
Risk FactorsFactors that may increase the chance of a skull and/or facial fracture include:
- Children up to 4 years old and advancing age
- Not wearing a seatbelt
- Not wearing a bike or motorcycle helmet
- Occupations with risk of falls from heights
- Playing sports without proper head protection
- Health conditions that increase the risk of falls
- Previous head injury
- Wheelchair use
- Car seat related accidents, such as drops, flip-overs, or falls
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