Hand is a priceless part of human body that helps the body to move around and perform all kinds of functions. Hand surgery can be affected by various injuries and trauma conditions like:
What is a fracture?
The hand is made up of many bones that are arranged in a framework. This framework acts as a point of attachment for the muscles that constitute the wrist and helps the fingers to move. A fracture happens when immense force is applied to a bone, heavy enough to break it. This results in pain, swelling along-with decreased use of the injured part.
How does a fracture affect the hand?
Fractures taking place in the hand may cause severe pain, stiffness and loss of movement. Some fractures like in finger, will cause a deformity, however, many fractures do not. Owing to the proximity and close relationship of bones with ligaments & tendons, the hand may be stiff and weak after the fracture heals. Fractures that injure joints may lead to early arthritis in those joints.
How are hand fractures treated?
Medical evaluation and x-rays determine the seriousness of the fracture and the subsequent treatment. A splint or cast is used to treat a fracture that is not displaced or else to protect a fracture that has been set. Some displaced fractures need to be set and then held in place with wires or pins. This procedure is done without making an incision and is called closed reduction and internal fixation. Other kind of fractures may require surgery to set the bone and is termed as open reduction. Once the bone fragments are set, these are then held together in place with the help of pins, plates or screws.
What types of results can I expect from surgery for hand fractures?
Perfect alignment of the bone is not always shown in x-ray. A bony lump may appear at the fracture site as the bone heals and is known as a “fracture callus”. This is a normal healing process and the lump usually gets smaller over time. Problems with a healing fracture may include shift in position, stiffness, infection, slow rate of healing or complete failure to heal. Smoking also acts as a deterrent in the process of healing. A hand therapy program with splints and exercises may be advised to speed up and improve the recovery process.
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