Matt Todd, a rugby player from New Zealand, suffered a hand fracture in an August 27 game. His team, Canterbury, was playing against another New Zealand team, Otago. While Todd finished the game, a visit to a specialist the day after the game confirmed that he had fractured his left hand.
Todd is expected to be unable to play for at least a month. His injury came at an especially disappointing time since New Zealand is currently participating in the Rugby Championship, an annual rugby competition that includes New Zealand, Argentina, South Africa, and Australia. While Todd had not been chosen to play on New Zealand’s national team, the All Blacks, he was expected to take Sam Cane’s place for at least a few games. Cane suffered a concussion just a short time before Todd’s hand fracture. Unfortunately, with Todd unable to play rugby for at least a month, he is unlikely to see playing time in the Rugby Championship this year.
Because of the small size of the bones in the hand, hand fractures are a common injury. They are generally the result of either the hand colliding with an object or something being dropped on the hand. In quick-paced sports, this may even include someone falling and another player stepping on the fallen player’s hand.
Of course, any hand injury is going to hurt at first, but just because it is painful does not necessarily mean you have fractured your hand. It may just be bruised or otherwise injured. Signs of a potential hand fracture include swelling around the area of the injury as well as the hand looking deformed. The person may be unable to bend their fingers, or the fingers may bend at an odd angle. Of course, a bone sticking out is a clear indication that the hand is fractured.
If the swelling and pain go down after a short time, you likely have not suffered a hand fracture. If the pain persists, it is a good idea to see a hand specialist as soon as possible, even if you are unsure if your hand is fractured. The sooner the extent of your injury can be determined, the sooner you can begin to heal.