METACARPAL FRACTURE FIXATION
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What Is A Metacarpal Fracture Fixation?
Metacarpal fracture fixation is a surgical procedure that surgeons perform to stabilize and align fractured metacarpal bones in the hand. These long hand bones connect wrist carpals to finger phalanges. Metacarpal fractures can result from various causes, such as trauma, crush injuries, or sports-related incidents.
- Surgeons indicate metacarpal fracture fixation when a metacarpal bone undergoes significant displacement, instability, or comminution (breaks into multiple pieces).
- Conservative treatments like casting or splinting prove inadequate for achieving proper alignment and healing.
- Surgeons also consider this surgery in cases where the fracture damages nearby structures, such as nerves or blood vessels.
- Surgeons typically perform the surgery under regional or general anesthesia, depending on the patient’s condition and the extent of the fracture.
- During the procedure, the surgeon makes incisions over the fractured metacarpal bone to expose the broken ends. They then carefully realign and stabilize the fractured segments using various methods, such as:
- After fixation, the surgeon closes the incisions with stitches and may apply a splint or cast to support the hand during the initial healing phase.
- The recovery time varies based on the fracture extent and surgical technique used.
- Physical therapists or hand rehabilitation specialists may recommend patients to improve hand and finger mobility, strength, and function.
- Patients may need to wear a protective splint or cast for several weeks to allow proper bone healing.
- The success of the fixation depends on factors like the fracture type, surgical technique, and the patient’s adherence to postoperative care and rehabilitation.
- In many cases, metacarpal fracture fixation provides stable and proper alignment of fractured bones, resulting in good functional outcomes and a return to normal hand use.
Generally, the medical community considers metacarpal fracture fixation a safe and effective treatment for certain metacarpal fractures. However, as with any surgical procedure, it carries risks, and patients should thoroughly discuss the benefits, risks, and potential complications with their surgeon before proceeding. The procedure should be performed by a qualified hand surgeon experienced in treating hand and finger fractures to ensure the best possible outcomes.