What Should I Do If I Think I Have A Broken Finger?

Of the many conditions hand doctors treat on a daily basis, broken fingers are one of the most common. Whether the result of a sports injury or an accident on the job, any sharp blow to the hand could potentially lead to a broken finger.

If you suspect that you have a broken finger, it’s essential to take prompt action to ensure proper diagnosis and treatment.

In this article, board certified Macomb County hand doctor Uzma Rehman discusses how to tell if you have a broken finger, and what you should do in such a situation.

Common Causes of a Broken Finger

Broken fingers are a common injury that can result from a variety of causes, including industrial accidents, workplace mishaps, recreational activities, and accidents at home. In adults, common causes of broken fingers include traumatic injuries such as falls, crush injuries from heavy objects, and direct blows to the hand or finger during contact sports or recreational activities.

Workplace accidents, particularly in industries involving heavy machinery or manual labor, can also lead to broken fingers due to the risk of crushing or impact injuries.

Similarly, children are at risk for broken fingers from a variety of causes, including falls from playground equipment, sports-related injuries, and accidents during recreational activities. Rough play, accidental falls, and mishaps while riding bikes or skateboarding can all result in broken fingers in children. Additionally, participation in contact sports such as football, basketball, or soccer increases the risk of finger injuries due to the potential for impact or collision with other players or equipment.

By understanding the most common causes of broken fingers in both children and adults, you can take preventive measures to reduce the risk of injury and protect your hand health.

What Are the Signs of a Broken Finger?

There are a great many bones within the human hand. The three small bones that make up our fingers are called phalanges. While phalanges are relatively durable, their small size makes them prone to breakage. Put simply, a broken phalange means a broken finger.

The first symptom of a broken finger is usually immediate pain, followed by bruising and swelling. It is also difficult to move a broken finger, particularly if the bone is displaced or the joint is dislocated. Both scenarios can cause the broken finger to appear deformed. If nerve damage has occurred, the broken finger may also experience feelings of tingling or numbness.

When a broken finger is not treated immediately, the patient is at risk for serious infection, as well as their bone healing out of alignment. To the untrained eye, it can be difficult to tell the difference between a broken finger and a finger that has simply been sprained or seriously strained (particularly true of children). If you suspect you have a broken finger, the best course of action is to visit a specialist -like Macomb County board certified hand surgeon Dr. Rehman – for an X-ray.

Immediate Steps to Take with a Broken Finger

If you suspect that you have a broken finger, it’s crucial to take immediate steps to provide comfort and support while awaiting medical evaluation. Begin by immobilizing the injured finger using a splint or makeshift brace to prevent further movement and minimize pain. Applying ice to the injured area can help reduce swelling and alleviate discomfort. It’s essential to wrap the ice pack in a cloth or towel to prevent direct contact with the skin, as prolonged exposure to ice can cause frostbite.

Elevating the affected hand above heart level can further reduce swelling and promote circulation, aiding in the healing process. In addition to immobilization and ice, over-the-counter pain relievers such as acetaminophen or ibuprofen can be taken to help manage pain and inflammation. However, it’s important to follow the recommended dosage instructions and avoid giving aspirin to children, as it can increase the risk of bleeding.

As soon as possible, especially if the pain is severe or the finger appears deformed or misaligned, seek medical attention for further evaluation and treatment. At Macomb Hand Surgery in Macomb County, our team of experienced hand surgeons specializes in the diagnosis and treatment of finger injuries, offering comprehensive care and personalized treatment plans to help you recover fully and regain function in your hand.

How Do Hand Doctors Treat Broken Fingers?

After making a diagnosis a broken finger is usually treated by using a cast or splint to immobilize the injured area, allowing it to realign over the course of the next several weeks. However, if a broken finger has sustained breakage in more than one locations – or is just very severe – the injury may require surgery.

To reduce swelling, Macomb County hand doctor Uzma Rehman may also advise the patient to keep the hand with the broken finger elevated above the heart. To ease the pain, patients may also ice their broken finger in 20 minute intervals for up to 4 times a day. Pain and swelling may also be reduced with over the counter and/or prescription anti-inflammatory medications.

After removing the splint or cast and the phalange of the broken finger has healed, the patient may still experience some stiffness or immobility. Dr. Rehman and her expert team of hand therapists will carefully assemble a treatment plan for every patient that includes exercises designed to regain the finger’s full range of motion and strength.

For the quickest recovery time possible, broken finger patients should faithfully perform their physical therapy exercises with the proper alignment. This will not only heal the broken finger more rapidly, it will ensure their hand regains their full range of motion.

Broken Finger Doctor – Macomb County

Like virtually all other hand injuries, a broken finger can impede everything we do. And without the treatment from a specialist like Macomb County hand doctor Uzma Rehman, a broken finger can result in long-term effects, such as permanent immobility and disfigurement. In more extreme cases, an untreated broken finger may eventually need to be removed. Fortunately, in the care of a specialized hand doctor like Dr. Rehman, most broken fingers heal extremely well.

At Macomb Hand Surgery in Macomb County, our team of experienced hand surgeons specializes in the diagnosis and treatment of finger injuries, offering comprehensive care and personalized treatment plans to help you recover fully and regain function in your hand.

If you are in the Macomb County area and suspect you have a broken finger, contact Dr. Rehman today for a consultation. Doctor Rehman will assess your individual injury, and prescribe the treatments that are best for your condition.

Broken Finger Doctor Macomb County: 586.532.0803