What is a broken finger?

A broken finger is a fracture in one of the bones in any of your fingers. Thumbs have two bones and the remaining digits have three bones. Broken fingers are common injuries and typically occur from sports injuries, accidents, such as a door slamming on a finger, or a fall. Crush injuries may seriously damage blood vessels and nerves near the fracture. The break may be a complete or a partial fracture of one or more of the bones in your finger.

Many types of fractures can occur in a finger; the type is determined by the direction of the break and whether or not the skin was torn by a broken bone projecting through the skin. If the bone is projecting through the skin, the fracture is termed an open fracture. A closed fracture is one in which the bones do not break through the skin. Further, it is possible to break more than one bone in a finger. This type of fracture is known as a comminuted fracture.

A broken finger is treated with pain medications and bracing or splinting. In some cases, surgical repair may be necessary. Open fractures carry a greater risk of infection and generally take longer to heal than closed fractures.

Seek immediate medical care (call 911) if you believe you have broken a finger, especially if you have deformity or dislocation of the joint, extensive swelling, numbness, a bone protruding through the skin, or inability to feel the finger.

Seek prompt medical care if you are being treated for a broken finger but mild symptoms recur, or if you experience persistent numbness, swelling, or trouble moving your fingers.


What are the symptoms of a broken finger?

A broken finger causes injury and inflammation in the finger that may result in a number of symptoms. A broken finger may accompany other injuries to the hand that may produce serious symptoms. These symptoms vary in intensity among individuals:


What causes a broken finger?

Broken fingers result from trauma to one or more of the bones within a finger. Falls, sport injuries, and accidents are the most common causes of broken fingers. Finger fractures frequently happen as the result of participating in sports, such as baseball, basketball and football. Fingers becoming caught or slammed in doors or a force moving the finger abnormally can cause a broken finger. Majo... Read more about broken fingercauses


How is a broken finger treated?

Treatment for broken finger begins with seeking medical care from your health care provider. To determine if you have a broken finger, your health care provider may ask you to undergo X-ray testing.

If you believe you have broken a finger, apply ice packs to the area while you seek medical care. Broken fingers are typically treated with pain-relieving medications and taping or spl... Read more about broken fingertreatments

Medical Reviewer: William C. Lloyd III, MD, FACS Last Annual Review Date: Aug 23, 2013 Copyright: © Copyright 2014 Health Grades, Inc. All rights reserved. May not be reproduced or reprinted without permission from Health Grades, Inc. Use of this information is governed by the HealthGrades User Agreement.

This Article is Filed Under: Bones, Joints and Muscles

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