Chicago Weather: Slip and falls on the rise due to icy conditions, doctors say

CHICAGO (WLS) -- Chicago doctors are seeing an increase in patients with fractured bones and other serious injuries all because of icy roads and icy and potentially dangerous sidewalks.

After more freezing temperatures, the West Loop Urgent Care prepared for another round of people hurt in slip and falls on Wednesday.

"We've actually seen a lot of patients come in for slip and falls especially this time of year in Chicago with all the ice happening," said Blake Kliegl, Medspring Urgent Care Director of Physician Relations.

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Over the last few weeks, physicians at Medspring Urgent Care say they've seen more people suffering from fractures and strains as they struggle to navigate icy and slick sidewalks.

"It is slippery and not all the places salted or plowed or shoveled or anything like that," resident Hayley Heavay said.

Chicago area resident Kimberly Potocki says she's almost wiped out more than once.

"I caught myself luckily but if not I probably would have hurt myself," Potocki said.

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The emergency room at the University of Chicago Hospitals has seen an increase of those injured too. In the last three weeks, Dr. Kelly Hynes, an assistant professor of orthopedic surgery, says she's seen 20 to 30 fractures that need an operation.

"Ever since the ice started a couple of weeks ago the number of ankle fractures especially has gone through the roof," Hynes said.

Experts say the most important thing is to wear good shoes with grip and be careful with every step you take. That's easier said than done, especially now that there's an ice melt shortage.

"I've had people calling nonstop about it. Then there's actually one product that we are completely out of stock of that I have customers waiting on," said Brian Wolff, a Gordon's Ace Hardware employee.

While stores say they will eventually catch up to the demand of ice melt, people are being warned that if you are out walking around make sure you use a lot of extra caution and watch where you step.
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