Bennett Fracture – Symptoms, Causes, And Treatment
The Bennett fracture is an injury involving one of the fingers or thumb of the hand. You need to know all the details you need to know about this condition and how to go about treating it. If you or any of your loved ones happen to have a Bennett fracture, it is important that you take action.
Most of the day to day activities involve the use of our hands. There is always a need for grabbing movements, grasping movements or pinching movements.
You cannot do any of these if your fingers do not function optimally. The fingers are even more critical if you are involved in sports such as basketball or volleyball. An injury to the fingers, if you are involved in any of the sporting activities mentioned above, implies that you will miss significant time.
What Is A Bennett Fracture?
Bennett fracture is the break in continuity of one of the bones at the base of the thumb. The bone is known as the metacarpal bone at a point where it meets with another bone in the finger known as the trapezium bone.
This fracture now goes ahead to cause a dislocation between the metacarpal bone (the bone at the base of the thumb) and the carpometacarpal joint ( a joint formed between the carpal bones of the hand and the metacarpal bone of the thumb)
Fun Fact: Bennet Fracture is named after Dr. Edward Hallaran Bennett who is an Irish surgeon. He was the first to describe this type of fracture in detail.
What Are The Causes?
The causes of Bennett fracture are similar to the origins of other fractures that involve the fingers.
- Sports: Participating in sports such as baseball, football, volleyball, wrestling, hockey or skiing can result in a Bennett fracture due to the intensity of force that is usually applied in these sports.
- Accident: A direct force such as a door hitting your thumb or falling on your thumb while trying to break a fall can result in Bennett fracture.
- Calcium Deficiency: If you don’t have enough calcium in your diet, your bones will not be as strong as they should be and they are at risk of getting broken easily.
- Osteoporosis: This is a medical condition that results in a weakness of the bones of the body and makes them more prone to getting fractured easily.
Signs And Symptoms Of Bennett Fracture?
The signs and symptoms of Bennett fracture include:
- Severe pain at the base of your thumb
- Pain when anyone tries to touch or move the thumb
- Thumb is bent at an odd angle.
- Numbness or a feeling of coldness in your thumb.
- Swelling around your thumb.
- Bruises around your thumb.
- The joint of your thumb becomes very unstable.
- When you notice that the base of your thumb is broken, avoid pushing it back into position yourself as you may damage some surrounding structures. You can wrap the thumb in ice before going to the hospital. You can also apply a buddy splint.
- At the hospital, the doctor will take your history and request for an X-ray, MRI or CT scan.
- Your thumb will be immobilized and reduced by the doctor.
- You will be given painkillers to relieve your pain.
- Depending on the severity of the fracture, the doctor may have to refer you to an orthopedic surgeon.
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