Media file 5: Broken finger. This x-ray illustrates a common fracture of the
distal phalanx. It is an injury where the distal phalanx is forced toward the
palm and resisted by the pull of the extensor tendon. This is very common in
sporting events in which a ball strikes the end of the finger (often called
mallet finger). These injuries are either bony (as seen) or involve ligaments.
Treatment is splinting or surgical pinning of the distal phalanx. This injury
may take a long time to heal and must be watched closely. Despite every effort
to heal, a residual lag may continue after treatment. This usually is cosmetic
only and does not affect grip strength.
Media file 6: Broken finger. This is an x-ray of an oblique (diagonal)
fracture of a metacarpal. These injuries occur from a twisting or crush injury
to the hand. They are common to machining and workplace injuries as well as
direct trauma. There are many different muscles and tendons that may accentuate
this fracture causing shortening or angulation toward the palm. Treatment may
consist of either casting with close observation or a surgical procedure for
stability of the fracture. This would depend on the severity of the fracture
seen on the x-ray.
Synonyms and Keywords
finger injuries, digit, phalanx, metacarpal, index finger, long finger, ring
finger, small finger, thumb fracture, mallet finger, finger infection, broken