Diving Injury of the Arm and Hand

July and August are the hottest months of the year in Michigan. And this summer has been one of the hottest on record.  Fortunately, in the Great Lakes State, water abounds everywhere for cooling off.  And few families don’t engage in Michigan’s long held traditions of swimming and diving. But, as with any athletic activity, diving can lead to sports injuries…the most common of which is injury of the arm and hand.

In this article, board certified Michigan arm and hand surgeon Doctor Uzma Rehman discusses diving injuries of the arm and hand.

Who is Susceptible to Diving Injury of the Arm and Hand

Many Michigan families have kids, teens and young adults who participate in competitive diving at the High School and College level. March marked the end of another diving season for both high school and college athletes – again with some of the best student divers in the country.

Now those lazy days of summer are almost upon us – with images of kids and teens diving into Southeast Michigan’s many lakes and backyard pools!

But, diving is actually considered a collision sport because of the intense impact of the body with the water on entry. The higher the dive, of course, the greater the impact. Competitive divers who dive from the 10-meter platforms are traveling almost an astonishing 40 miles per hour!

Causes of Diving Injury to the Arm & Hand

The forces from diving are strong enough to cause severe arm and hand injury – breaking bones and dislocating joints. For competitive divers, overuse injuries of the wrist, arm, hand and other joints – similar to gymnasts’ injuries – can result from arching, flexion, and twisting.

Divers are also at risk of diving injury of the arm, hand, head and legs from inadvertently hitting the board, platform, edge of pool or dock. Similarly, inexperienced or unsupervised divers who dive into water that is too shallow can experience, wrist and arm injury, severe neck trauma and even death – from the impact with the ground or pool floor.

For this reason, unsupervised recreational diving is associated with a far greater risk of arm, hand and other injury that occurs in competitive diving.

Common Arm and Hand Diving Injury

Pressure put on the wrist during flat palmed rip entry can cause inflammation, pain, swelling and stiffness. And, from higher entry points, this pressure can result in sprains or fractures of the wrist.

Thumb hyperextension during entry can also cause a sprain to the base of the thumb. Similarly, elbow pain, resulting from elbow hyperextension during diving is fairly common among competitive divers.

Dislocation of the shoulder (called a subluxation or partial dislocation), as well as chronic shoulder pain due to a pinching of the rotator cuff, are also common divers’ injuries.

CLICK HERE to Read More About Common Arm and Hand Diving Injuries

Top Michigan Diving Injury Doctor

If you or a family member is suffering from any diving injury or pain in their fingers, wrist, elbow or arm, contact board certified Michigan hand surgeon Doctor Rehman for a comprehensive evaluation and consultation. As with every athletic injury, early detection, treatment, and a therapy and prevention plan is the most effective way to combat the effects of a diving injury.

Doctor Rehman will assess your individual situation, and prescribe the treatments that are best for your condition – so you or your child can continue to enjoy swimming and diving!

Michigan Diving Injury Doctor: 248.940.5233