Saturday, August 13, 2011

Ahhhh... kickball, 2011... A week ago last Thursday, as I was pitching for our beloved Rancho Rockers, the kicker kicked a mile-high pop-fly right above me. I carefully positioned my 40 year old body under this great big giant red rubber ball and proceeded to catch it. WOOO HOOO! One out! As I tried to grip the ball for the next kicker, the ball seemed a bit deformed! In actuality, it was my pinky finger that was deformed. Whoops. As I spread my fingers wide, all of them straightened out nicely, except for one. The end of my pinky finger drooped. No matter how hard I tried to extend that finger, it refused to 'obey' me. I finished pitching the inning pain free, got into the dugout and sat until it was time to take the field again... yes, I finished the game...

A quick inspection via google and I solved the mystery. I had a distal interphalangeal joint (DIP) extensor tendon avulsion -- more commonly known as Mallet Finger.

Malletfinger_3 Mallet finger, also called 'baseball finger' or 'drop finger', occurs when the tendon that straightens the finger gets pulled loose from its attachment. Usually you're forcibly trying to straighten the finger, when a sudden impact bends it. The force of the impact is too much for the tendon, which snaps at its weakest point -- right at the base of your fingernail. Voila -- that joint is no longer under your control, and without a tendon to straighten it, the fingertip droops.

It does look a little freaky, having that one fingertip dangling like that, but it's often painless. ONE VERY IMPORTANT THING TO REMEMBER: If possible (and painless, which it is not at the present moment), immediately straighten the bent fingertip & keep it straight ALL THE TIME for the next 4-6 weeks. This means wearing a splint to keep the snapped tendon from being retracted up into the finger. Oh, how lovely... it's so attractive - and of course it's on my right hand!

80% of these injuries heal reasonably with conservative care (splinting), but you'll probably have at least some permanent loss of extension at that joint. For most people, this injury never causes a noticeable loss of function, but the aesthetic deformity may be bothersome.

It's also important to have a doctor check out your finger. Avulsion fractures are very common with this injury, as are dislocations, and both can be caught on an x-ray. Luckily for me, after further review of an x-ray at the orthopedic surgeon's office, there wasn't any bone breakage nor fracture. hooray! Now, I get to wear this fashionable splint for 6 to 8 weeks! We won the game - we beat the first place team!


At 6:07 PM, Anonymous hermes handbags said...

Good blog!


Post a Comment

<< Home

Weather Forecast | Weather Maps | Weather Radar