Fracture of metacarpal bone(s)
- Boxer’s fracture is the common name for a break in the end of the small finger metacarpal bone.
- It is usually caused by punching something harder than the hand, such as a wall or another person’s head. The end of the metacarpal bone takes the brunt of the impact, which usually breaks through the narrowest area near the end (the “neck”), and bends down toward the palm.
- Ice, elevation, and hangover help if needed.
- A therapist can make a splint to help protect the broken bone.
- A doctor can set the bone, but many times the bone falls back after being set. If the break is bad enough, it may be best to have the fracture set and then held in place with pins or other hardware.
- Casting or splinting the break is helpful to keep from injuring the area further, but without surgery, the break usually heals with a bend at the site of the break. The most reliable way to get the bones to heal straight is to use with pins or other orthopedic hardware. This works well in most people – but is not usually needed, as most people do just fine even if the bone heals with a bit of a bend.