Patient: I had a deep laceration on the middle finger on my left hand in the last week of February. Took 7 stitches. It is currently still swollen, showing redness, not painful unless pressed on quite firmly, and a little numb still. Is this normal?
Symptoms: Redness, a small amount of pain when firmly pressed, swelling, numb areas (moreso in middle of laceration)
Doctor: Hi.Thanks for your query, albeit short and specific and the clear picture.Noted the history of stitched deep lace ration – left middle finger – last week if Feb – still swollen, red, little numb and tenderThis is not normal.The probable causes are:- Most dependent position of this area. Most of the times this is the lowest part of the upper limb that is hanging far below the heart level, hence the ”dependent edema” as we call.- Lymphatics too do not get channelized properly as they are the minutest in this area.- Being the middle finger it is always used in some or the other activity, hence always under pressure or touch, fondled inadvertently.- Numbness too has the similar reason as the nerve endings do not get end to end attachment and the part which has less nerve connection will appear to be numb.- Redness is the result of all the factors noted above. And obviously may be fondling inadvertently adds on to the situation is it in.I hope this answers your query, please feel free to ask for further relevant query if you need to or if you feel that there is a gap-of-communication.
Comments / Follow Ups
Patient: Thank you for the reply,
What would be the best possible solution to my particular scenario? I am currently heading to Calgary, Alberta to tree plant for 4 consecutive months. I may/may not be able to seek out a clinic while I am out here. I do live in Canada, and can to go to whichever walk-In clinic I find. What would the best plan be? Should I wait until I get back home, or should I seek immediate attention? If I wait, what should I do to sort of protect it while I’m working? If I should seek immediate attention, what is the procedure in order to aid in proper healing?
Doctor: You are most welcome.
This is a situation where you have to help yourself, I mean you have to and you can treat yourself.
Please follow the following guidelines:
– Keep the affected hand by the side of the wall whenever you are lying down or sleeping and support in such way that it is comfortable yet the hand remains above the heart level.
– Apply equal amount of Vaseline and honey, just light massage. Soothes the best and helps in all respects.
– Stop fondling – this happens inadvertently.
– If you can get a protector like the ones a tailor uses for protecting from the needles – to be used while working is needed.
– Use the thick loose rubber gloves at manual work.
This is in all for all the preparations for the work you are going to.
I hope all these simple measures will help you as they help all my patients.
You still can have the Doctor’s opinion, it is possible you may get one more point.
I hope this helps you, start doing it ASAP.