Tanya Coats Occupational Therapy

Broken Hand | Causes, Symptoms and Treatment

So you decided to get into the Christmas spirit and put up some decorations. You got out the ladder, but oops, you fell. Now your hand is swollen and bruised, however, you have full range of movement of your fingers and wrist.

What is it?

A broken hand is when a break/fracture occurs to one of the bones in your hand. The hand has a number of bones which support its framework. Many people believe that a fracture and a break are different, but they are actually the same thing.

Common Causes of a broken hand

Any forced applied in excess to the bone can break it. This can occur from a fall, punching a wall, or having someone or something else hit it.

Symptoms of a broken hand

Usually with fractures in the hand, they can present with lots of swelling (also known as oedema), pain, bruising and potentially a loss of movement or deformity.

However, some people with a broken hand can still move their fingers and wrist without issue and don’t necessarily present with deformity.

Some fractures are simple, although some others may be displace or have multiple fragments on x-ray.

A 4th metacarpal spiral fracture
A 4th metacarpal spiral fracture

Treatment of a broken hand

A medical evaluation including x-ray is required for diagnosis. This will help your doctor and hand therapist
determine what treatment is required or if referral to a hand surgeon is required.

Some hand fractures require a hand splint for protection while others may require a plate a screws to fix through a
small incision (open reduction and internal fixation: ORIF).

I can fabricate customised hand splints to accommodate for all fractures in the hand with any level or injury (pre or post-op).

Ensuring that only the joints that need to be immobilised are immobilised and the rest are available for gentle range of movement and use.

If you have any further questions, please feel free to contact me here and I’ll be happy to help!

Article Reference: Hand Therapy Group

Hand splint for finger fracture
Hand splint for finger fracture

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