When a fracture occurs in the hand it can either happen in one of the smaller bones such as the fingers, or to one of the long bones such as the metacarpals. Fractures can be casued from a variety of activities especially in direct or contact sports. Fracture in the hands can also be caused by a crushing injury like that caused when shutting your hand in the door. No matter how minor it may seem, it is important to seek immediate medical attention in the case of a fracture.
Signs & Symptoms Of Hand Fractures:
Although some fractures are readily apparent, others can be hard to detect. You may think that you just hurt your hand very bad and simple ice and rest will hurt. However, it is important to look out for the fallowing symptoms in the case of a hand injury:
Diagnosing A Fracture:
When diagnosing a fracture a physical examination of the hand is first performed to check the position of the fingers and is the fracture has affected the skin in anyway. The examination may include a range of motion tests and assessment of feeling in the fingers to asses if there is any nerve damage. An X-Ray of the hand however will be the true determining factor of the fracture.
Hand Fracture Treatments:
Depending on the severity of the fracture, Dr. Tahernia will determine the best method of treatment whether it be a nonsurgical or surgical treatment.
Nonsurgical Treatment –In less severe situations, the bones can be realigned to their original orientation without the use of surgery. A cast will be applied to mobilize the repositioned hand and hold everything in place. The case will most likely need to extend down to the elbow to ensure that the bones stay in a fixed place. Another X-Ray will be taken after the cast is put on to make sure that the bones remained in the correct position. The cast will need to be worn for at least 6-8 weeks, or until directed by the doctor.
Surgical Treatment – For more severe injuries, surgery will be required to stabilize and realign the bones. Usually fractures of this type will have broken through the skin or were caused by a crushin accident. With the use of wires, screws and plates, the surgeon will be able to hold the fractured pieces of bone together. After the bone has healed, the surgeon may remove the implants, or will leave them in place. The doctor will also need to see you regularly to ensure that the joint does not tighten during the healing process. The joints may be very stiff after being immobilized for such a long time, but with the help of physical therapy you will be able to restore its function.