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A common sport-related hand injury is a finger dislocation. This happens when a ball or opponent jams your finger out of its normal position. The joints become separated. Some diseases, such as rheumatoid arthritis, make people prone to dislocation.

When a finger becomes dislocated, there is usually:
* severe pain
* crookedness
* swelling
* bruising or
* numbness of the finger

If you dislocate your finger, do not try to move your finger forcefully. Keep your hand elevated. Ice placed around the finger will help with pain and swelling. Take an anti-inflammatory medication such as aspirin or ibuprofen if available. These medications should not be taken without approval from your healthcare provider if the person has an ulcer, kidney problems, an allergy to aspirin, or if on a blood-thinning medication.

A dislocation injury is best evaluated by your healthcare provider. If the finger is out of alignment, it is important to have your finger put back into place quickly and without causing more damage. This type of injury may include several structures in the finger. Injury can occur to the:
* bone
* joint
* ligaments or
* muscle

Your healthcare provider will reposition your finger and put it in a splint for support. Usually x-rays are taken to help determine the extent of damage. Rarely, is surgery needed to repair bone, muscles, or ligament damage.

Learn how to take care of your finger. Ask how long you are to wear the splint and when you can start moving it. You may be referred to physical therapy for special care and education. Follow all instructions carefully. It will make a difference in how your finger heals.

Use hand protection during sports and work activities. Keep your hands strong. Be prepared for the stresses you place on your hands at work and at play.


Copyright © 1998. HBOC Call Center Group (602) 230-7575.
All rights reserved. Information in this document is subject to change without notice.

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