Strains, sprains, and fractures may occur because of incorrect form or technique, insufficient equipment, or just an accident. The question is: Should you go to a walk-in urgent care clinic or head straight to the emergency room?
Where should you seek medical attention for a sudden injury? Let’s talk about how to choose one over the other, and where you can go in Wellington and Royal Palm Beach for a handy walk-in urgent care clinic.
Walk-In Clinic vs. ER for Common Injuries
This is your rule of thumb for these injuries:
- A sprain is a tear or pull of a ligament, which is the tissue connecting bone to bone
- A strain is a tear or pull of a muscle or a tendon, which is the tissue connecting muscle to bone
- A fracture is a broken bone of any kind, from mild (hairline fracture) to a shattered bone
If your pain or the symptom is mild, a walk-in clinic is your best bet. However, a total tear of a ligament, tendon, or muscle (a severe sprain or strain) or a severe fracture will instantly be debilitating, and this warrants treatment at an emergency room.
What Is a Walk-In Urgent Care Clinic?
A walk-in urgent clinic is a medical facility that provides relatively quick treatment for acute illnesses and minor injuries. They are best for handling health conditions or injuries that require prompt medical attention but are not life-threatening. If you sustain a mild sprain, strain, or fracture, you can get help from a walk-in urgent care center.
These walk-in facilities are equipped with medical and diagnostic equipment. If you suspect you may have sustained a musculoskeletal injury, the medical staff can conduct X-rays and other imaging tests to confirm the diagnosis. Once they have ascertained the damage, the medical staff may give you a splint or bandage to wear. They will also provide you with instructions on how to take care of yourself to speed up your recovery.
In addition to minor musculoskeletal injuries, a walk-in clinic can help with:
- Colds and flu
- Cuts and lacerations
- Minor car accident injuries or post-accident evaluations (cuts, scrapes, bruises, whiplash, or evaluation for underlying injury)
- Diarrhea and constipation
- Insect bites
- Mild allergic reactions
- Minor burns
When Should I Go to the ER?
On the other hand, you should head to an emergency room if you experience severe or possibly life-threatening symptoms. For example, while a walk-in urgent clinic can handle simple fractures, you would need to go to an ER for complex fractures – such as a broken bone with a visible deformity, or if the bone is pushing through the skin. This will require minor surgery to repair the bone internally, rather than just with a cast.
A hospital’s emergency room is equipped with complex equipment and high-level technology that can address these concerns. Here are situations when going to an ER is more appropriate:
- Breathing issues
- Deep or large wounds
- Head and neck injuries
- High fever
- Serious burns
- Severe allergic reaction
- Severe pain anywhere in the body
- Uncontrolled bleeding
Walk-In Clinic in Wellington
If you’re looking for a Wellington walk-in clinic, look no further than the Advanced Medical Clinic. We are a primary care clinic also providing high-quality walk-in services.
Unlike other Wellington walk-in clinics, you will receive expert service and compassionate care from primary care physicians. If you have any questions or would like to schedule an appointment, call us today at (561) 434-1935 or fill out our online appointment request form. We also have an office in Royal Palm Beach for your convenience. We look forward to serving you and your family!