Broken thumb treatment – the story of Ryan Miller and Justin Timberlake

justin-timberlake-broken-thumbBuffalo Sabres rookie goalie Ryan Miller had a good thing going. He was the starting goalie of an NHL team, he was doing well and his team was great on the ice. A shot the missed his blocker and hit his thumb has put the brakes on it. Ryan Miller ended up with a broken thumb joining the millions of other people who break their thumbs. Heck, even Justin Timberlake, who is modeling the cast, has broken his thumb.

Broken thumbs are nasty little things, as they are extremely painful, limit the joy of life and take about six weeks to heal. If you’re lucky, a broken thumb won’t leave your hands disfigured.

What is a broken thumb? In technical terms you’re breaking either your distal phalange or proximal phalange. The distal phalange is the bone that goes from your finger tip to your knuckle, and the proximal phalange goes from the knuckle to your hand. Well, it attaches to your first metacarpal.

What causes a broken thumb? Direct trauma will break the thumb, which includes a hard hit to the thumb or falling on your thumb. Contact sports such as football, hockey, wrestling and skiing see a high share of broken thumbs.

How do you diagnose a broken thumb? X-rays work great, but you should be able to tell just by looking at the thumb. It will be swollen and appear disfigured.

What are the symptoms of a broken thumb?

  • Severe pain
  • Swelling
  • Lessened mobility
  • Tenderness
  • Deformed appearance
  • Numbness

How do you treat a broken thumb? In most cases the doctor will set the bone and place you in a cast. In some cases there may be nerve or ligament damage that will require surgery. The most important thing is to see a doctor immediately for treatment, because your thumb may become deformed without treatment.

What is the recovery for a broken thumb? It’ll take about six weeks to heal properly, and physical therapy will be needed.

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