Broken hand


An examination of the injured hand and X-rays are typically used to diagnose a broken hand.


Misalignment of the fractured bone ends can result in gaps between the bone pieces or an overlapping of bone fragments. To realign the bone components, your doctor may perform a reduction procedure. Depending on the severity of pain and swelling, you may require local or general anesthesia before the operation. Regardless of the chosen treatment, it’s crucial to move your fingers frequently to prevent stiffness during the healing process. Seek advice from your doctor on how to safely move them. Also, consider quitting smoking as it can hinder or delay the bone healing process.


It is crucial to limit the mobility of a fractured hand bone to ensure optimal healing. You’ll probably need a cast or splint for this. To lessen pain and swelling, it is advised that you keep your hand above your heart level as much as you can.


Your doctor could suggest taking an over-the-counter painkiller to lessen your discomfort. If the pain is severe you may require an opioid medicine, such as codeine.

NSAIDs can reduce pain but, if taken over a prolonged period of time, they may also slow down bone healing. To find out if you can use them to relieve pain, ask your doctor.

If you have an open fracture—a wound or break in the skin close to the wound site—you’ll probably be prescribed an antibiotic to stop an infection from spreading to the bone.


You’ll probably need rehabilitation exercises or physical therapy to ease stiffness and regain movement in your hand when your cast or splint is taken off. Although rehabilitation can be beneficial, full recovery could take several months or longer.

Surgical and other procedures

Surgical intervention, such as the insertion of pins, plates, rods, or screws, may be required to stabilize and facilitate the healing of a broken hand bone. Additionally, a bone graft may be necessary to aid in the healing process. These treatment options may be necessary in the following situations:

  • Injury to the nearby blood vessels, nerves, or ligaments
  • Bone pieces that are loose and could get into a joint
  • Bone fractures that enter a joint
  • A fracture where the bone fragments move before healing
  • An open fracture

Even after reduction and immobilization with a cast or splint, bones can still shift. To monitor the progress of the healing process, your doctor will likely use X-rays. If there is any evidence of bone displacement, surgery may be necessary.