MavEtJu's Distorted View of the World

My mallet finger - Tuesday 7 June 2011

Posted on 2011-06-07 23:59:00
Tags: My mallet finger

A normal Tuesday: wake up, train, work, train, dinner, volleyball. And then hospital, because my lefthand ring-finger got damaged during the volleyball game.

When the finger got hurt, by a bad catch of a badly placed ball, it didn't seem too much. About half a second later I was off the field to get some ice for it.

The people from the Menai Sports center have a great solution for providing cold-packs for injured players: just use a bag of frozen peas, it works as well and doesn't cost as much if never returned.

The "let's see if thus goes over after ten minutes" approach worked fine, except that I nearly fainted after the ten minutes when the finger got bent. And there was a strange hump of the top of the finger. Plan B, off to the hospital.

In the Emergency department you get first investigated by the triage nurse (m/f for the Dutch people who have a different word for a male and female nurse). He wisely didn't touch the finger and wanted to make an X-ray first.

The X-ray departments these days don't work with photographic paper anymore, the receiver is a kind of flat CCD device which wirelessly transfers the image to the image library. Welcome to the 21st century, goodbye to the "clunk clunk" sound of the replacement of the film.

It showed that there was a little triangle of bone broken off and I was told that the tendon was still attached to the piece. That was the reason why it a. Hurt so much when trying to stretch the finger and b. The finger didn't get stretched anymore.

The doctor could tell me that it was called a "mallet finger" and that it was a common breakage for people who play ball-sports. I still don't know the dutch name for it, maybe it only happens in English speaking countries! The doctor knew so much about it because he had had the same injury from the same sport earlier in life. And his finger was close to back to normal and he played volleyball again, so there is hope!

Later in the hospital I got a mega-splint on it and the message for the hand-surgeon, including a CDROM with a JPEG and an uncompressed picture of the X-ray, and I went home.

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