by Cynthia M. Johnson, MA
A hand fracture is a break in any of the five long bones (metacarpals) between the wrist and the fingers.
Fractures of the finger bones can be found in Finger Fracture.
This problem is caused by trauma to the long bones of the hand from:
The risk of this problem is higher in people who have:
This problem may cause:
You will be asked about your symptoms, health history, and how the injury happened. An exam will be done. It will focus on the hand. This is often enough to make the diagnosis.
Images may be taken to find out how much harm was done. This can be done with x-rays.
It may take 6 to 8 weeks to heal. The goals of treatment are to ease pain and swelling. Medicine can help. Other options are:
Children's bones have growth plates that let bones grow and harden with age. A child with a fracture may need to be checked over time to make sure the bone heals the right way and keeps growing.
Putting Bones Back in Place
Some fractures cause pieces of bone to come apart. These pieces will need to be put back into place. This may be done:
To lower the risk of this type of fracture:
Family Doctor—American Academy of Family Physicians
Ortho Info—American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons
Canadian Orthopaedic Foundation
Broken hand. HandCare—American Society for Surgery of the Hand website. Available at: https://www.assh.org/handcare/condition/broken-hand. Accessed July 29, 2021.
Hand fractures. Ortho Info—American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons website. Available at: https://orthoinfo.aaos.org/en/diseases--conditions/hand-fractures. Accessed July 29, 2021.
Metacarpal fractures. EBSCO DynaMed website. Available at: https://www.dynamed.com/condition/metacarpal-fractures. Accessed July 29, 2021.
Last reviewed July 2021 by EBSCO Medical Review Board Warren A. Bodine, DO, CAQSM
Last Updated: 7/29/2021
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