All about Hand Fractures – Info from a Gilbert AZ Hand Surgeon

Anatomy of the Hand

 

A number of bones join together to make up the human hand. These bones also form and act as the appendage’s supporting framework which attaches the muscles together at the wrists and shoulder and enables the fingers and arm to move.

A considerable amount of pressure directly to a bone is needed to break it, i.e. a hand fracture hand wrist carpal tunnel pain photooccurs due to direct force to the hand. What usually comes next, is pain, swelling, and a decrease in usage of the injured hand.

Kinds of Hand Fractures

While some fractures may be considered as simple, with bone pieces being perfectly aligned and stable, there are other kinds of fractures that are just the opposite, where bone fragments tend to shift or lose their place. There are also some fractures that happen in the main body of the bone, while there are others that only break the surface of the joint.

Comminuted Fractures: These are fractures where the bone is broken into many pieces and is often highly unstable.

Open Fracture: Also known as the compound fracture, it usually happens when a bone fragment tears through the skin. There is a level of risk associated with this type of fracture.

Signs and Symptoms of a Hand Fracture

If you have a hand fracture, you will experience;

  • Pain
  • Stiffness
  • Loss of movement

To help determine the exact plan of action to take in the case of a hand fracture, your orthopedic hand surgeon in Gilbert or Chandler will first undertake a medical evaluation and x-rays. A number of treatment options will be made available to you, depending on what type of fracture you are suffering from.

Treatment Options for Hand Fractures

In order to treat a fracture that isn’t displaced, a splint or cast is usually recommended. Your orthopedic hand specialist may also prescribe one to protect a fracture that has been set.

There are some fractures that need to be held in place with the help of wires or pins. This is known as a closed reduction and internal fixation, because no incision is made to carry out the procedure. On the other hand, some fractures require surgery known as open reduction.

Articular fractures or those that disrupt the joint surface require a precise setting of bone fragments to smoothly restore the joint.

In some cases, a bone graft might be necessary, especially when the bone is severely broken. In this procedure, your orthopedic surgeon will take bone fragments from another part of the body or from a cadaver and attach it to the area to be repaired, which provides stability to it. Depending on the case, substitutes for bone graft are also used at times, instead of taking it from the body part of the patient.

Once the fracture has been set and gains enough stability, your orthopedic surgeon will lead you through a range of motion exercises aimed at reducing stiffness and improving mobility with physical therapy.    

The top hand specialists in Gilbert, Chandler, Mesa and Queen Creek are at OSPI. All types of nonoperative and operative treatment are offered at Orthopedic and Sports Performance Institute for hand injuries. Most insurance is accepted. Call OSPI today at (480) 899-4333!

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