Common hand & wrist conditions caused by sports injuries

Our clinics deal with all manner of hand and wrist conditions, from carpal and cubital tunnel syndrome, to mallet finger and wrist fractures.

Some of the conditions we treat can be caused by various things – sometimes its passed down in the family genes, while other times it’s due to an accident. For some, the causes aren’t even completely known.

Particularly, there are several hand and wrist conditions, some of which can be rather painful, that are caused by sports based injuries. You could need surgery from something as simple as a ball hitting your finger, or you may be requiring treatment after a fall onto your hands has resulted in significant damage. Here are just some of the conditions we’ve dealt with, that can be commonly caused by sports injuries:

Scaphoid Fracture

Scaphoid bone

The scaphoid bone is located in the wrist area, and can be fractured when you fall onto an outstretched hand. In a wide variety of sports, it can be very easy to fall over, and if the hand is outstretched, you may be feeling some pain and swelling around the wrist area. Typically, a scaphoid fracture is milder than a wrist fracture, and can take several weeks to be diagnosed due to patients believing it to be a simple sprain. Treating a fracture of the scaphoid bone is a simple procedure if the bone hasn’t displaced, simply putting the arm in a cast for several weeks for it to heal. However, if the bone has displaced, surgery is required.

Mallet Finger

Mallet finger injury
Mallet finger is when the end of your finger is bent inwards towards the palm of the hand, due to the tendon that connects the muscle to the finger bone being damaged. If you have mallet finger, you’ll be unable to straighten the end of your finger, and may also feel some pain and swelling. It’s typically caused by catching the end of the finger on some lose material, or being hit on the end of hit by an object. One example is if a ball hits the finger during sports participation. Mallet finger can be treated in several ways, sometimes requiring just a splint to keep the finger straight until it heals, or surgery, especially if a bone fragment broke off as part of the injury.

Thumb Ligament Injury

Thumb ligament injury

Thumb ligament injury is another condition that can be caused by falling awkwardly during sporting activity. If the thumb is hit hard into the ground when falling, and is twisted or bent into an extreme position, the thumb ligament, usually the ulnar collateral can be damaged, resulting in swelling, pain and weakness when using the affected hand to write or hold objects. Sometimes, thumb ligament injury can be healed by wearing a cast or splint, but sometimes may require surgery, with a new ligament being created using tendon.

Hand & Wrist Fractures

wrist pain

The most serious of injuries that can occur as a result of a sports fall or collision is a fracture in the wrist or hand. Hand fractures can occur in the small bones of the fingers or the long bones, and can result in swelling, pain and the inability to move the affected fingers. A wrist fracture can be notably much more painful, and symptoms can include swelling, and if the broken bone has broken through the skin, bleeding. Some fractures can be treated by placing the affected area in a plaster cast to hold the broken fragments together until they heal. More severe fractures will mean displaced and misaligned bones, meaning a procedure known as closed reduction must be performed to realign the bones before they can heal.

If you think you may be suffering with any of the above conditions or injuries, or anything else affecting the hand and wrist, get in touch now to arrange a consultation with Ladan Hajipour.

References

http://orthoinfo.aaos.org/topic.cfm?topic=A00012
http://www.nhs.uk/Conditions/mallet-finger/Pages/Introduction.aspx