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First Aid & Emergencies

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Wrist Injury Treatment

1. Get Immediate Help, if Necessary

  • If there is obvious deformity, severe pain, numbness, or the person cannot move the wrist or maintain a grip, see a doctor Immediately or go to a hospital emergency department. These are signs of a possible fracture.
  • Support the hurt arm and wrist with a makeshift splint, such as a ruler, stick, rolled up newspaper, a pillow or sling, until you get help.


2. Rest Wrist

  • Minimize wrist motion to prevent further injury.

3. Control Swelling

  • Ice the area for 20 minutes at a time, 4 to 8 times the first day.
  • You may apply a compression wrap such as an Ace bandage.
  • Elevate the wrist above heart level.

4. Treat Symptoms


5. Follow-Up

  • If pain and swelling get worse in 24 hours, see a doctor.
  • The doctor may need to order X-rays to rule out a fracture that was not obvious and examine the wrist to look for signs of tendonitis, arthritis, gout, infection, or other conditions.


WebMD Medical Reference

Reviewed by Carol DerSarkissian on November 23, 2015

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