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Mallet Finger

What is Mallet Finger?

Mallet Finger is a very common injury that occurs when the extensor tendon on the back of the finger tears off the small distal interphalangeal (DIP) joint near the finger tip. Mallet Fingers can occur with minimal trauma, such as banging or pressing the finger against a hard object.

 

Symptoms of Mallet Finger

Droop of the small distal interphalangeal (DIP) including the thumb

 

Common Causes of Mallet Finger

Blunt force to the tip of the finger through contact sports or banging the finger on a hard object

 

Treatment for Mallet Finger

Full-time splint for 8 weeks, including bathing and showering. The splint has to fit well in order to maximize tendon healing. At Shift, we offer custom splints made by a certified hand therapist.

 

If left untreated

The tip of the finger droops, or ‘lags’. Any time the DIP joint flexes down, all of the scar that has formed to try to heal the tendon, will get torn. Surgical intervention may be indicated.