What is Boxer’s Fracture?
Boxer’s Fracture is the term for a hand fracture occurring at the neck of the little finger metacarpal bone. This location is right before the first knuckle of the little finger. Often times the fractured part of the bone, which is the knuckle, is angulated downwards.
Symptoms of Boxer’s Fracture
Pain, swelling, and bruising are common in the area of the first knuckle of your little finger. Moving your little finger may be painful and difficult. Since the knuckle is typically bent downwards with this fracture, the appearance of the knuckle may be less prominent.
Common Causes of Boxer’s Fracture
As the name indicates, the injury is generally a result of punching, occurring in such sports as Boxing, Kickboxing, Karate, and Mixed Martial Arts. A fall onto your hand may also cause this type of fracture.
Diagnosing Boxer’s Fracture
A careful physical exam and the findings on an x-ray will identify the diagnosis.
Treatment Options for Boxer’s Fracture
The little finger metacarpal can tolerate more angulation than the other metacarpals because it can compensate with its greater mobility at the joint at its base and due to the hand’s natural curvature. Consequently, most fractures with or without mild angulation can be treated with simple immobilization in a brace or cast. More severely angulated fractures may benefit from surgical realignment and stabilization to restore correct hand mechanics and range of motion of the finger.
Other Boxing Injuries
In addition to Boxer’s Fracture, common boxing injuries include fractures and dislocations of the carpometacarpal joints. Extensor tendons and their supporting ligaments – the sagittal bands – are often torn as well, necessitating splinting and sometimes surgical repair.
Boxer’s Fracture benefits from prompt identification and treatment to preserve a well-functioning hand. Call NYC Hand Surgeon Dr. Pruzansky at 212-249-8700 to schedule an appointment.