Summary: Mallet finger is a relatively common hand injury usually involving an overextended tendon in the finger. The injury is painful and leaves the finger unable to completely straighten. The damage can intensify if mallet finger is not treated in a suitable amount of time. There are, however, surgical treatments for Mallet finger.
Our hands are delicate things, which seems contradictory considering how many tasks we use them for. This means that injuries can come from many venues, and we always have to watch out for them. One particularly troublesome injury, at least in terms of symptoms, is something called mallet finger. It’s also sometimes known as baseball finger or, in more medically technical jargon, extensor tendon injury.
It’s All About the Tendon
As you might guess from the medical name, mallet finger is an injury to your tendon. It makes it difficult, or perhaps impossible, for you to fully extend your finger. There can also be numbness and tingling. Generally, it’s not very pleasant, and it’s caused by hyperextending one of your tendons. This means that the immediate injury is usually quite painful. If you get mallet finger, you’ll probably know it.
Time is of the Essence
This, it turns out, is pretty critical. Mallet finger is not something you want to let linger for a long period of time. In fact, you should seek treatment within a week at the most. In the immediate aftermath of the injury, do everything you can to keep your finger elevated, so as to reduce blood flow and, thus, swelling.
For a long term solution, surgery may be your only option. You can find specialized care, for example those seeking hand surgery in Houston may find themselves at the Clear Lake Hand Center, where plastic surgeon Dr. Charles Polsen is certified by the American Association for Hand Surgery.
During the surgery, doctors will probably try to reattach the tendon. If this cannot be accomplished, more drastic measures may be necessary. After surgery, patients may be required to leave their finger in a splint or otherwise immobile until healing has occurred.
Avoid Machoness at all Costs
There’s a tendency, especially with sports injuries, to be tempted to “walk it off.” It’s vital that you avoid this temptation, as it could cause permanent damage to your hand in this case. Indeed, because your hands are delicate tools, they require delicate care. They’re simply too important to ignore.
If you have any type of hand injury, new or nagging, find relief by contacting a plastic surgeon hand specialist today.