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Hand & Wrist Sports Injuries Specialist in Atlanta, GA

Georgia Hand, Shoulder, and Elbow

Hand and wrist injuries are common in sports like baseball but can also happen outside athletics. So, what are hand and wrist injuries? The hand is a complex structure consisting of multiple bones, muscles, ligaments, tendons, and nerves that allow us to grasp objects. The wrist includes eight small bones that attach the hand to the forearm.
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Injuries often involve damage to these structures and one or more nerves controlling finger movement. When you suffer an injury to the hand or wrist and have severe pain, it is important to seek medical attention. Find a specialist in your area at Georgia Hand, Shoulder & Elbow in Atlanta & Marietta, GA.

How Can Sports-Related Hand and Wrist Injuries Occur?

Sports-related hand and wrist Injuries can occur when a ball or another player hits your hand, causing damage to the bones, muscles, and ligaments that make up the hand and wrist.

They can occur in baseball, softball, basketball, and many other sports. These injuries range from mild (a slight sprain) to severe (dislocation or fracture). Wearing wrist guards can help prevent injuries. 

Additional Causes For Hand and Wrist Injuries

Performing everyday tasks can also be a common cause of hand and wrist injuries. These injuries are often caused by heavy lifting or awkward work positions. 

Sometimes, repetitive motion injuries occur in the hand and wrist. These include:

 

These overuse injuries can occur in your hands or wrist from participating in activities like baseball batting or tennis playing.

Common Hand and Wrist Sports Injuries

Some of the most common hand and wrist sports injuries may include the following:

Thumb Sprains

A thumb sprain is an injury to the ligaments in the thumb, including your ulnar collateral ligament. It is also known as a gamekeeper’s thumb. When pressure is applied during catching or gripping objects, people often sprain their thumbs.

A thumb sprain is often treated by applying ice and immobilizing the joint with a splint or cast for a few days, followed by rehabilitation exercises to help restore range of motion. 

Wrist Sprains

A sprained wrist is a common and relatively minor injury, usually resulting from twisting or turning the hand, forearm, or wrist.

It is also caused by a forceful twist of the arm that causes one or more of the ligaments that stabilize the joint to stretch and tear.

Fracture

A fracture is a medical condition involving a broken bone or a break in multiple bones, usually caused by direct trauma. The most common wrist fractures are distal radius fractures, also called Colles’ fractures. They often occur with a fall on an outstretched hand and can cause ulnar-sided wrist pain.

The distal radius is the large bone on your wrist near your thumb. The scaphoid is a small bone in the same area that can also break during a fall or similar injury. Scaphoid fractures are also the most commonly injured carpal bone.

A scaphoid fracture is not always detectable due to minor swelling, leading some to believe they have a sprain. Stress fractures are also common overuse injuries.

De Quervain’s Tenosynovitis

De Quervain’s tenosynovitis is a common sports injury that affects the thumb and wrist. It is a painful inflammation of the sheath that surrounds the tendons in your wrist at the base of the thumb.

ECU Tendinitis

ECU tendinitis is an inflammation of a tendon on the back of your wrist. 

Tendonitis can set in after repetitive movement or strain, leading to pain and inflammation within the joint. 

Mallet Finger

A mallet finger (not to be confused with a jammed finger) can occur when the tip of the finger is jammed or forcefully flexed, causing the tip joint of the finger to droop down. The tendon is injured in a way that prevents you from fully straightening the finger.

Jersey Finger

A Jersey finger can be a serious injury and occurs when an athlete’s finger (usually the ring finger) gets caught in a jersey and is then forcefully pulled free. The tendon can be torn from the tip of the finger requiring surgery to fix it.

How Are Hand and Wrist Sports Injuries Treated?

Professional and amateur athletes require many different treatments, such as:

  • Therapy
  • Rest
  • Activity modification
  • Compression
  • Modalities such as heat and ice
  • Massage
  • Therapy gun
  • K tape
  • Cupping
  • Splinting and/or wrapping
  • Acupuncture
  • Cryotherapy
  • Therapeutic injections
  • Surgery

 

This kind of treatment for sports-related hand & wrist injuries can help revive tissues and relieve pain, hastening your recovery so you can get back to play as soon as possible. 

Physical therapy is a common treatment that all professional athletes undergo to get back on the field or court as soon as possible. Rehabilitation exercises improve strength in the injured area and increase motion in the affected joints.

It is essential to seek treatment quickly to prevent long-term effects. Our Georgia Hand, Shoulder & Elbow team in Atlanta & Marietta, GA, is here to provide you with the best care.

If you think you might have any hand or wrist pain, please book an appointment with us.

Medically reviewed by

Randall Alexander, MD