Metacarpal Fracture

Overview

Metacarpal fractures are common injuries to the hand resulting from falls, punching objects, or motor vehicle accidents. Although a misnomer, boxer’s fracture refers to a fracture of the metacarpal neck in the small finger. Yet, professional boxers rarely have this injury as the small finger is typically not fractured with proper punching form. X-rays are used to evaluate the degree of fracture displacement and determine if surgery is necessary. Many metacarpal fractures can be managed with immobilization. Those fractures in high demand athletes or significantly displaced may require surgery.

Dr. Anup Patel Advantage

Dr. Anup Patel tailors each patient’s metacarpal fracture to the desired goals of each patient. For example, professional athletes wish to have early range of motion minimizing immobilization. These patients will have a plate and screws or a headless compression screw to enable early range of motion and quicker return to the profession.

Metacarpel Fracture

Symptoms

  • Pain over the knuckle
  • Loss of motion of the affected finger

Causes

  • Trauma

Treatments

Non-Surgical

  • Immobilization for 4-6 weeks followed by occupational therapy
  • Pain over the knuckle
  • Loss of motion of the affected finger

 

Surgical

  • Pinning
  • Plating with screws
  • Headless compression screw

Patient Examples

Patient 1

26 year old, former NFL New Orleans Saints receiver presents with a metacarpal fracture. The patient wants to have the fastest return to professional activity and minimize immobilization. The patient undergoes surgery where lag screws were used enabling early range of motion and return to professional activity in seven weeks.

Patient 2

31 year old, Olympian BMX rider presents with a fall sustaining a metacarpal fracture. The patient wishes to have the fastest return to professional activity and minimize immobilization. The patient undergoes surgery where a plate and screws are placed in a locking fashion and off center to minimize tendon adhesions allowing the patient to return to competitive bike riding in seven weeks.

Patient 3

50 year old male sustains metacarpal fracture from automobile accident. Patient wants early range of motion minimizing immobilization. A headless compression screw was placed with the patient having full range of motion at 4 weeks.

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Dr. Anup Patel

Dr. Anup Patel is a board-certified plastic and reconstructive surgeon trained in aesthetic, hand/upper extremity and reconstructive surgery. He completed his plastic and reconstructive surgery training at the premier Yale University followed by a hand and microsurgery fellowship at the New York University Institute of Reconstructive Plastic Surgery and Mount Sinai Department of Orthopedics. Dr. Patel received his MD and MBA from the Yale University School of Medicine and Yale University School of Management, respectively. He graduated as the valedictorian of his class at the University of Florida majoring in economics, biochemistry and molecular genetics and valedictorian of his high-school class at Lake Highland.

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