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What conditions can be treated at an urgent care clinic?

An urgent care clinic can treat a multitude of conditions. Most urgent care clinics have the ability to splint and immobilize injuries that require this treatment. Urgent care clinics are often equipped with x-rays and limited lab testing. Conditions that can be treated at an urgent care clinic include the following:

  • minor injuries
  • lacerations
  • strains and sprains
  • uncomplicated fractures
  • urinary tract infections
  • gastrointestinal complaints
  • sore throats
  • cold and flu symptoms

 

Urgent care clinics can treat acute conditions like strep throat or acute bronchitis. If a person falls and subsequently has wrist pain, he or she can go to the urgent care center for treatment. However, a person with a serious problem like a possible heart attack should go directly to the emergency room. People with chronic problems like diabetes and hypertension should be taken care of by a their healthcare provider. 

Among the conditions that can be routinely treated in urgent-care centers are ankle sprains and simple fractures that can be treated with a splint or cast, bladder or upper-respiratory infections, abdominal discomfort, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea or other cold or flu symptoms.

“Typically we think of urgent care as conditions that would be handled in a primary-care office that are being done in a non-primary-care setting, either because the problems arise after hours or there is no appointment available during regular business hours,” Bernard J. Katz, M.D., of UCLA Health-Santa Monica Bay Physicians, explains.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.