Blog Category

Tag: Wrist Sprain

Categories
General Wrists

How do I treat a sprained wrist?

Read Blog

Spraining your wrist is one of the most common injuries, and it can happen more easily than you might think. You could be playing sports and have a collision, you could slip and fall walking down the stairs, and receive the injury in countless other ways. A sprained wrist occurs when your outstretch palm hits the floor or another surface and bends backwards momentarily. This causes the ligaments in the wrist to stretch further than they were meant to stretch. Small tears can occur, and in some cases, it is possible to snap the ligament entirely.

Most Common Symptoms

When a person sprains their wrist, there is a substantial amount of pain. In addition, the area tends to swell. The site of the injury will be warm to the touch as it swells. The area will also be extremely tender to the touch – even a light touch can send swells of pain through the body. Bruising tends to occur as well.

At the moment of the sprain, it is common for the injured party to feel the tear as it occurs. This can actually be the most frightening part for many people, as they know that something bad happened … they just do not know the extent of the injuries.

The Diagnosis

While you might suspect that you have a sprained wrist, the only way to know for sure is to speak with a doctor. You do not want to believe that you have a sprained wrist when it is actually broken. The doctor will examine you, and they may require that you have an x-ray as well. This will give them a look “inside” to make sure that there are no fractured bones in the wrist. They may require other imaging tests as well, such as an MRI, to get the entire picture.

Types of Sprains

There are several “grades” of sprains – Grade I, II, and III. The mildest of these is Grade I, which is reserved for those sprains that have only minor ligament damage. The Grade II sprains have more damage, as well as more pain. Some patients might feel as though their wrist joint feels loose. They will also lose proper function of the wrist until it heals. A Grade III sprain is the most serious, as it means that ligament is torn and the patient will not have any use of their wrist.

Treatment Options

When you have a sprain, you will want to follow the acronym RICE – Rest, Ice, Compress, Elevate. Keep the wrist resting and add ice to the area to keep the swelling down. Use a bandage to compress the area, which will also help with the swelling. Keep your wrist elevated so it is above heart level.

You can also take over the counter non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, which can help to keep the swelling down, and which can provide you with pain relief. Those who suffer from a Grade III sprain may need to have surgery to proper repair.

While most sprains aren’t serious and can heal on their own, you should still get a medical opinion. Contact our hand surgeon’s office in West Bloomfield, Howell, Warren, or Macomb to get in touch with a medical professional. You need to have a proper diagnosis if you are expected to heal.

Categories
General Wrists

Is My Wrist Broken or Sprained? – Arora Hand Surgery

Read Blog

How can you tell if your wrist is sprained or broken? Essentially, it goes without saying that if you suspect either a sprain or a break, you should see your doctor or visit the emergency room in order to obtain an effective diagnosis. Sprains and breaks are both painful, and both can cause damage to the structure of the wrist. Interestingly, though, patients who have experienced both often report that a sprain is the more painful of the two injuries. It is also interesting to note that breaks are often more easily treated, whereas sprains can sometimes be more devastating, and if not treated promptly an effectively, can lead to complications like arthritis later on.

If you are determined to self-diagnose, and wait for treatment, or if you are providing first aid to an injured person, you need to know how to determine the difference between a sprain and a fracture. You also need to remember that a sprain is not a minor injury. It can involve serious tears to the ligaments that hold the wrist bones together.

How Did the Injury Happen?

This is the first thing that you need to consider when attempting to answer the questions, “Is it a break or a sprain?” If someone uses their hand to break a short fall, it could be a break, but the smart money is on a sprain. On the other hand, if someone falls off a roof and lands on their hand, a break is more likely.

What Can You See?

If a bone is protruding through the skin, the diagnosis is obvious – it is a break. Additionally, if there appears to be a great deal of swelling or bruising, a break is likely. If the swelling and pain doesnt go away in a day or two, suspect a break, but if it goes away relatively quickly, suspect a sprain.

What Can You Hear?

If moving the wrist results in a grinding or crunching sound, accompanied by excruciating pain, it is almost certainly a break.

What Should You Do?

Immediately following the injury, you or the person you are treating should immediately stop moving the wrist. Elevate it and apply cold packs. If stopping movement seems to be problematic, apply a wrist splint.

Exceptions

Although a break will usually hurt for a long time, and a sprain will stop hurting in a few days, there are exceptions. One is a scaphoid bone fracture. The scaphoid is a small wrist bone that, if broken, could feel painful for a day or two and then stop hurting. In this way, it imitates a sprain, and can be easily misdiagnosed. If untreated, it can lead to arthritis. Additionally, if certain wrist ligaments are sprained, that can also lead to arthritis, because the bones that those ligaments were intended to hold together move abnormally. This can also cause arthritis.

The Final Word

Any wrist pain that has not gone away within 3-5 days after an injury should be checked out. You may need surgery.

Categories
General Wrists

What to Expect With a Wrist Sprain

Read Blog

We are often told that a sprain is a minor issue, but when we know just what a sprain is, we understand that it deserves good care and adequate time to heal. This is particularly true when it is a wrist sprain.

A sprain, according to the technical definition, is, “A stretching or tearing of muscle or tendon.” That alone sounds pretty serious, but when you realize that it is those torn or stretched tendons that hold the muscle to the bone, you understand that this is no laughing matter.

Essentially, a wrist sprain is when the tendons that hold the wrist together have been over extended or damaged, making it very hard for you to use your hand properly. The most frequent way that a wrist sprain occurs is in a fall or during active sports. The hand is usually bent backward or forward at a extreme angle, and this tears or overextends the tendons.

The immediate response is pain, and this is rapidly followed by swelling. The hand becomes painful and difficult to move. Generally, it is not all of the tendons in the wrist that are harmed. There are two ligaments that seem to take the brunt of falls and injuries of this kind, and they are the scapho-lunate ligaments, which are tucked between the scaphoid and lunate bones in the hand/wrist area.

Though other sprains can occur, it is most common to experience this particular type of sprain, but it can also range from mild to severe, with some instances of ligament rupture occurring.

Dealing With a Wrist Sprain

Should you fall or sustain any sort of injury that leads you to believe you have injured or sprained the wrist, do not hesitate to get to a hand doctor. They are going to be able to determine what has happened by taking x-rays, doing a thorough exam, and discovering if there are any fractures in addition to the sprain.

The most conservative treatment is immobilization in a splint or a cast. If there has been more extensive injury, it may be necessary to perform surgery in order to repair damaged ligaments or bones. The scaphoid bone is the most frequently broken bone in the hand, and it can be difficult to heal, meaning even a minor sprain that includes a broken scaphoid bone may need surgery.

As with many types of hand injury, a wrist sprain is best dealt with immediately. If the injury is ignored, it becomes a chronic concern. After several months or years, the ligament may still need repair, but in many instances the chronic condition worsens and can allow arthritis to set in or for the joint to become very stiff. Treatment can range from surgery to steroid injections and therapy. As the American Society for Surgery of the Hand indicates, “Despite optimal treatment, wrist sprains occasionally result in residual long term pain, stiffness, and swelling.”

The complexity of the wrist makes it difficult to rebalance the many bones and tissues after injury. Instead of waiting to see how the wrist heals after an injury or fall, head to your hand doctor and get the best possible treatment and results.

Get on the List

Subscribe

Patient

Stories

Read All

Dr. Aroras office from my first call to schedule my appointment was friendly. Walking in the first day, I felt like I was in a nice atmosphere. Dr. Arora was EXCELLENT in taking great care of my hand injury. He was gentle and very understanding to the concerns I had about my hand. His expertise was admirable and I would recommend anyone with an injury to their hand to his office to be under his care. Because of him, I have healed faster than expected and will make an 100% recovery! Thank you Dr.

Jackie S.

I first thought I was going to have to have painful injections or surgery, but Dr. Arora suggested physical therapy may do the trick. I was doubtful, but I agreed to do it. Now, my pain is gone, and with the help of an ergonomic keyboard at work to keep my hands in the correct position, I am virtually pain free. The therapy strengthened my wrists and shoulders, and built more flexibility into my wrists.

Jerry T.

My experience with this doctor was positive from the outset. Dr. Arora was kind and spent a great deal of time with me. Staff was friendly. The office was nice and bright.

Ariel G.

Very friendly and helpful Great staff!!! Doctor Arora was very professional and did great work. I was very happy with everything!

L B.