Children and Young People’s Surgical Day Unit
This information leaflet provides you with advice and guidance once your child is safe to be discharged home following application of a cast.
Caring for your child’s limb and cast
- Keep your child’s arm or leg elevated on pillows when sitting or laid down, this helps to reduce swelling.
- Let your cast breathe for the first night (do not cover with duvet).
- Encourage your child to exercise fingers or toes regularly.
- Your child may experience some itchiness. Antihistamines can help and can be purchased from your local pharmacist.
- You must keep your child’s cast dry. Waterproof cast protectors can be purchased from Limbo or Amazon.
- Elevate your child’s hand higher than their elbow to help reduce swelling.
- Use the sling when walking and moving around, if provided for your child.
- Elevate your child’s foot higher than their hip to help reduce swelling.
- Encourage your child to use any walking aids as shown, if provided.
Things to avoid
- Take care your child does not knock the cast or put any weight on it unless you have been told it is safe to do so.
- Do not allow your child to poke or place anything down the cast, as this could cause injury or infection.
- Do not allow your child to wear jewellery or nail varnish on the affected limb.
Pain relief such as Paracetamol and Ibuprofen should be given regularly for the first few days to help reduce your child’s pain. When your child starts to feel better, you can give the medicine just when needed. Follow the instructions on your bottle or on the pain leaflet. Do not give your child more than the stated doses
When to seek advice?
Severe pain when your child has previously been comfortable with paracetamol and Ibuprofen.
Swelling that does not settle with elevation.
Complaints of numbness, tingling or pins and needles.
Unable to move fingers or toes.
Fingers or toes look pale, white or blue or feel cold to touch.
Unpleasant smell coming from the cast.
Rubbing or pressure from the cast.
Oozing or blood coming through the cast.
The cast has cracked, softened or is damaged.
Who can I contact for advice?
If you are concerned in any way about your child, please contact us for advice.
- Children and Young People’s Surgical Day Unit
Telephone: 01642 854927
(Monday to Friday, 7.30am until 19.00pm).
Email: [email protected]
- Ward 22
Telephone: 01642 854522 (24 hours).
South Tees Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust would like your feedback. If you wish to share your experience about your care and treatment or on behalf of a patient, please contact The Patient Experience Department who will advise you on how best to do this.
This service is based at The James Cook University Hospital but also covers the Friarage Hospital in Northallerton, our community hospitals and community health services.