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5 Signs Your Hand Injury Could be Worse Than You Thought

Hand using knife to get rid off avocado seed

Have you ever cut your hand, perhaps while working in the garden or kitchen at home and been unsure whether you should seek medical help? This article will give you some useful advice to help differentiate serious from less-serious injuries.

Also, you’ll never guess which the top-three seemingly harmless activities often lead to serious hand injuries! This article will point them out so you can be more aware and cautious when undertaking them.

Of course, if in doubt it’s always best to seek medical attention.

Signs you could have a serious injury

 Obvious signs of a serious injury include deep or large cuts; particularly if fat is visible in the wound. Heavy bleeding, particularly if pulsating, can indicate a damaged artery.

Commonly missed signs that might surprise you

Brisbane hand and upper limb surgeon Dr Pritpal Bansi says the following five commonly missed signs can also indicate a more serious injury.

If your injury has any of the following features, even if the wound is only small, it could indicate more serious underlying damage:

  1. Any injury on the palm side of your hand or finger indicates a much higher risk of tendon or nerve damage;
  2. Numbness can indicate nerve damage;
  3. Inability to flex or extend a finger can indicate complete division of a tendon
  4. Pain with flexing or extending your finger can indicate a partial tendon injury;
  5. Puncture wounds, such as from as from a thorn in the garden, can be problematic if they occur over a joint.

Three Activities that Can Result in Serious Injury

Injuries acquired from industrial incidents, crushing, angle grinders and knives obviously carry a much higher risk of damage.

Dr Pritpal Bansi suggests that you should be careful when completing the following seemingly innocuous activities, which are three most common other-causes of more serious injury:

  1. De-seeding an avocado with a knife in the palm of your hand commonly leads to a tendon injury if your blade slips;
  2. Separating frozen beef patties can cause similar problems;
  3. When gardening, a seemingly harmless puncture wound from a thorn can result in a serious infection if it overlies a joint. If the thorn happens to penetrate into the joint space it can seed it with bacteria and causing infection and irreversible damage. These injuries are often missed or under-treated.

If in doubt please seek help from your GP or emergency department who will refer you to a hand surgeon if required.

Further information for health professionals managing these injuries will shortly be made available.
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