How to treat a finger fracture with UCAST

Finger fractures are among the most common hand injuries. Untreated, they can severely affect your patient's ability to do day-to-day tasks. Luckily, immobilizing a fractured digit is easy with UCAST.

Just like mallet finger injuries and wrist fractures, finger fractures often happen in sports. They are some of the most common fractures but left untreated, finger fractures can severely hamper the patient’s ability to do normal daily tasks. Michael Lindroos, Dassiet COO and former cast tech, shows how you can quickly immobilize a broken digit with UCAST.
 
In addition to sports-related accidents, finger fractures often result from falls and crush injuries. Though most cases are straightforward to treat, even small fractures need close attention. Complications include pain and loss of function. [1]

Symptoms of a finger fracture are like other fractures: swelling, pain, bruising (erythema), and limited movement. Though simple fractures can be treated with a splint, more complicated injuries require surgery[ii]. At least anteroposterior, true lateral, and oblique x-rays are necessary to confirm the diagnosis [3]

UCAST finger splints can be used to immobilize both stable and unstable fractures either as a conservative treatment alternative or post-operatively. Sometimes strapping the injured finger to another (“buddy wrapping” or “buddy strapping”) is done to further stabilize the injury. Here’s how you can immobilize a fractured finger with UCAST:  

1. Prepare your UCAST

The package contains four splints. Start by removing the splints from the packaging and placing the number you think you will need in either a flatbed heater or an express heater.

Heating times will vary slightly depending on which method you are using – check the user instruction for specifics. In our express heater, the splint will be warmed up in approximately 50 seconds.

After the splint has softened and warmed up, carefully lift it from the heater and place it onto the Unitex wrap. Apply light pressure to make the splint grip on the fabric.

2. Immobilize the dislocated or fractured finger with UCAST

Place the long finger splint on the affected finger, and gently wrap the distal strap around the fingertip. Wrap the proximal strap and gently press the splint into the desired shape. The splint will be fully rigid after 2–3 minutes.

If you want to buddy-strap the injured finger, you can use UCAST finger buddy: wrap the two Unitex bands together to secure the fingers together. Unitex bandages are self-adhesive, so you won’t need any tape to attach them.

3. Hand therapy is key to getting back on track

Therapy will help your patient regain movement and strength in the injured digit. Exercising the injured hand as soon as healing allows will help recovery and prevent muscle atrophy. Regaining grip strength is crucial especially for patients who play sports.

UCAST makes recovery as easy as possible for your patient. It is simple for them to clean and re-apply at home – athletic patients will be happy to hear they won't have to worry about getting the device dirty. The bandage can be machine washed, and light soap and water will help to clean the splint. Once the finger has healed, you can recycle both the splint and the fabric. 

References

1. Broken Finger, WebMD, https://www.webmd.com/a-to-z-guides/broken-finger
2. Finger fracture, Rehab My Patient, https://www.rehabmypatient.com/hand-fingers-thumb/finger-fracture
3. Borchers, J. R., & Best, T. M. (2012). Common finger fractures and dislocations. American family physician, 85(8), 805–810.

Michael Lindroos
COO