Finger Injury in Sport

shutterstock_72294895If you sustain a finger injury during sport there are some good indicators as to whether you should continue to play or stop immediately.

You should stop playing immediately If there is:

– an obvious deformity of the shape of the finger

– if the joint is obviously dislocated

– if you are unable to move the finger or movement is accompanied by sharp pain

– if aching or sharp pain persists then best to stop.

Initial treatment of a finger injury follows the RICER principles.

REST: rest the injured part by stopping play

ICE: apply ice packs or put your hand in bucket of water/ice

COMPRESSION: bandage your finger

ELEVATION: often best to use of a sling over the shoulder to elevate the hand across the chest.

REFERRAL: to x-ray and/or physio/hand therapist. Every finger dislocation should be followed by an x-ray to determine the extent of the injury. Even sprains are often needed to be x-rayed to rule out any fractures.

It is important to have your physio assess your finger injury to determine bony damage, tendon damage and joint stability. Seeking early treatment reduces the chance of long term stiffness and deformity of that finger.

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