Patellar Fracture

A fractured (broken) patella or knee cap is most often due to a blow to the knee. If the bone fragments are in a good position, the fracture will usually heal in about 6 weeks with a knee immobilizer, splint, or cast. If there are many fragments, or the bones are not in proper position, surgery may be needed. Do not remove your splint or cast until your caregiver approves. Apply ice packs over the knee splint for 20-30 minutes every 2 hours and keep your leg elevated on pillows until your pain and swelling improve.

You should be on crutches at first. Avoid bearing weight on your injured leg if instructed. You will usually be able to put weight on your injured leg while walking with your crutches within 1-2 weeks. Use your pain medicine as prescribed. Arrange for follow up care as recommended by your caregiver.


  • Your swelling increases despite treatment or your lower leg or ankle becomes painful, cold, numb or pale.


  • Understand these instructions.

  • Will watch your condition.

  • Will get help right away if you are not doing well or get worse.