Spica casts, also called body casts, are frequently used to treat children who have hip, pelvis, or leg problems, such as developmental dysplasia of the hips (DDH). You may be nervous about having a child in a spica cast. It can be overwhelming to be responsible for the care and cleaning of the cast. But caring for a spica cast is not as hard as it may at first seem. After you get into a routine, you'll find that you can handle the daily tasks involved in cast care. You will become more and more confident that you can keep your child safe and comfortable while he or she is in the cast.
You can help care for your child's spica cast by:
Properly caring for your child's cast includes allowing it to dry properly, keeping it clean, preventing infections and other problems, and knowing when to call the doctor. You should also be able to position your child properly in the cast.
If your child's cast is made of plaster, it may need time to dry after it is first put on. Your child will likely be in a semi-sitting position and may need you to help him or her move. Turn your child at least every 2 hours for the first 24 to 48 hours to prevent uneven drying of the cast. You can use a fan to help the cast dry more quickly, but don't use heat. When you tap the cast and hear a hollow sound, it is dry.
Spot-clean the cast, and do your best to keep it dry. But realize that the cast may get dirty or wet now and then.
Focus on taking preventive measures and cleaning the cast when needed.
Keep your child safe and comfortable by using basic care techniques.
Your child needs physical contact with you, especially while he or she is in a cast. As long as you make sure to take basic safety measures, you can and should continue to hold, interact with, and provide stimulating activities for your child.
Encourage your child's involvement with your family.
Keep a constant watch on your child and the condition of the cast. Although you should call your doctor any time you have questions, talk to him or her right away whenever your child:
Also call your doctor any time the cast:
ByHealthwise StaffPrimary Medical ReviewerJohn Pope, MD - PediatricsDonald Sproule, MDCM, CCFP - Family MedicineSpecialist Medical ReviewerSusan C. Kim, MD - Pediatrics
Current as ofJuly 26, 2016
Current as of: July 26, 2016
John Pope, MD - Pediatrics
& Donald Sproule, MDCM, CCFP - Family Medicine & Susan C. Kim, MD - Pediatrics
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