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TabernakAttack's avatar

I'm pretty sure i broke my index finger. Am I properly fixing it by doing this?

Asked by TabernakAttack (354 points ) August 28th, 2009

My index finger is swollen up pretty big I think it’s broken in the thickest part the finger (between the knuckle and the first joint), does anyone know the proper way to fix it properly?

Right now I made a makeshift splint out of 2 pogo sticks, electrical tape, and a bottle cap. but how long should I keep the splint on, should I not even use a splint, etc..

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37 Answers

Likeradar's avatar

You know who knows how to properly fix it? A doctor.

Seriously, why are you trying to do this yourself? This is your body, and your hands are pretty important. Why are you trusting people on the internet with something like this?

jfos's avatar

Can you bend it? Is it throbbing? Does it feel warm?

TabernakAttack's avatar

It hurts too much to pull the trigger on a xbox controller, and it is pretty warm, it was throbbing yesterday but not today.

And I refuse to go to a doctor for this. With Canadian healthcare you pay with your time, not money. I don’t have approx. 10 hours just to have them tell me i need a splint on it

dpworkin's avatar

It will begin to knit immediately. If you have set it improperly it will need to be rebroken and reset. Go get an X-Ray and have it set properly lest you regret your decision.

TabernakAttack's avatar

it might just be fractured possible/hopefully..

Judi's avatar

I broke my index finger once. Not completely through though. They just put a splint on it for about 5–6 weeks.
By the way, if you don’t have insurance to go to a private doctor and end up in the ER in the US, 10 hours wait for something non life threatning is considered reasonable. Only difference is you end up with a $5,000 bill to go home with.

Buttonstc's avatar

I think the little leaf which your avatar resembles may be clouding your judgment.

How is it that your time is more valuable to you than your health and long term use of your hand.

What kind of fabulous job do you have that pays such an abnormally high hourly wage that you couldn’t possibly spare some of those hours to properly take of yourself.

And if you make that much money just go the private care route and have the Doctor come to you.

And here’s a little hint: if you don’t bring in enough per hour to make that affordable your time isn’t quite as valuable as you would like to think it is.

Get your priorities straightened out before the damage is irreversible.

aprilsimnel's avatar

Get it fixed properly. A couple of hours to get a proper splint will pay off in dividends of all the years that your finger heals and works like it should.

Judi's avatar

By the way, fractured IS broken.
Does anyone else find it sad that this guy is complaining about medical care that will cost him only a few hours of his time while people in America are dying and deteriorating of preventable diseases because of lack of access?

jfos's avatar

I’m sure people broke their fingers before there were x-rays and doctors. Ultimately, it’s @TabernakAttack‘s problem. Sometimes people can fix themselves, sometimes they can’t.

@TabernakAttack I would at least get a diagnosis…

Likeradar's avatar

@TabernakAttack So let’s say your home-made splint doesn’t work and you end up with some wonky finger that hurts and looks weird and just doesn’t work right. Will you be saying “damn, good think I spent those 10 hours doing something else!”

If you’re fortunate enough to live in a country where all you only have to pay in time for medical care, why the hell would you not? Bring a book. Or a friend.

TabernakAttack's avatar

@Jeruba Pogos = corndogs

Buttonstc's avatar

@Judi. I agree with you but I don’t find it as much sad as I do delusional on his part along with a exaggerated sense of self-importance.

What’s sad is the sheer number of Americans who would willingly trade places with him to have health care that affordable.

TabernakAttack's avatar

@Buttonstc Bud, maybe I didn’t want to go to the hospital because there are people with more important issues than a broken finger. How is trying to fix my own problem in any way a sign of exaggerated self importance? Pull your head out of your ass. My question was asking if this splint will work to fix my finger, or not. Not “should i go to a doctor or not”

Jeruba's avatar

A splint should work if it is broken. This is common sense, not professional medical advice. How the finger is set is what makes the difference, and we can’t see that or feel the broken bone. It’s not that a doctor would tell you that you need a splint. A doctor would know how to set it properly and would apply the splint. That’s what you go in for: the correct diagnosis and then the treatment, not words of advice. Words of advice are all we can give you here, and you’ve already let us know what you think they’re worth.

Facade's avatar

go to the doctor so they can help you. I broke my toe two years ago and it still hurts because I didn’t see a doctor.

gailcalled's avatar

@TabernakAttack: The splint might work or you might end up with a deformed finger. The index finger is one of the vital ones. How many ways can we say this?

JLeslie's avatar

Got to the doctor. If it was your little toe I would say don’t bother, because the doc can’t do anything either, but this is your finger, it is important it heals well and is properly secured so yoy are less likely to injure it more. Even if you simply have a hairline fracture, the bone is now vulnerable to split if you knock into it accidently. If you are very worried about the money maybe they will set/wrap it without an xray under the assumption it is broken, so you can save there, but here in the US they aren’t great about working with you on these things unfortunately, depends on your doctor.

Judi's avatar

@JLeslie ; He’s in Canada. he’s not worried about the money, he’s worried about the time. We should all be so lucky!

XOIIO's avatar

sigh Another person who has too much pride.

JLeslie's avatar

@Judi Oh, I didn’t read through the thread well, just skimmed it.

Jeruba's avatar

I doubt that it’s about pride. Just taking a wild guess, I would say that a person who (a) doesn’t want to spend that long away from his substance of choice and (b) doesn’t want to confront an authority figure while intoxicated ought to go to the library and look at a first-aid handbook.

If a doctor would not try to set a broken bone sight unseen over the phone, we sure can’t do it from here.

casheroo's avatar

As I’ve broken my fingers many times, I recommend buying the finger splints they have at CVS or Rite Aid.
But, it’s what works for me..I’d go to the doctor if it gets too painful.

YARNLADY's avatar

A splint for a broken finger does not consist of any straight, stiff object. The splint is slightly curved, and applied with the correct amount of padding or bandage to prevent further damage.

Where I live, you can actually purchase a proper splint at the drugstore, such as Walgreens, or Rite Aid.

Buttonstc's avatar

The splints to which you refer are designed for fingers which are merely bruised or sprained.

Whether or not it’s a sprain or a fracture can only be determined by x-ray.

Also the critical issue is not which type of splint to use but rather whether the bone is properly set to prevent it from knitting together crookedly.

But, hey if this guy is too dense to get the point it matters little whether he gets a splint designed for a sprain or tapes it up himself.

@TA. That’s not what you said in your original post. You complained about the 10 hr. wait time to be seen. If you are so far above the rest of us and can’t spare the time to wait like everybody else it either means that your time is that much more valuable than anybody else because you are a highly paid worker OR THAT you just think your time is worth more than anybody else’s HENCE HIGHLY EXAGGERATED sense of your own importance.

But some people only learn the hard way so who am I to deny you the opportunity to learn.

If you still don’t get what I mean, re-read the posts of Jeruba and Pdworkin among others.

Buttonstc's avatar

I’m done with this crap. Toodle-ooo…..

avvooooooo's avatar

You need to have it X-rayed and set.

If it were a less used and less important finger or a toe, it might not be such a big deal. This is a big deal because you use that finger all the time. If you don’t get it seen about, it might hurt to play Xbox forever and then where will you be?

We’re urging you to go to the doctor because it is important and it will cost you nothing but time. ERs are not going to ignore critical cases just because you’re there, you’re not taking anything away from anyone by being there to get treated. Except yourself and perhaps the proper function of your finger. The doctor can splint your finger properly and, more importantly, make sure its set right so that it heals well.

I broke my toe a little over a year ago. There are certain shoes that I haven’t been able to wear until recently because of how it healed. I didn’t go to the doctor and splinted it myself, but it was something that was pretty much ok because of the way it cracked. Bones are no joke and need to be seen about before they start to heal. If I were you and had something as important as my index finger broken, I’d go get it seen about ASAP. But the difference between you and me is that I’d pay 90 bucks (at least) just for the X-ray and a buttload of other money for anything that was done for me.

This is your finger, which is essential, that’s broken. Its just time that its costing you. Get a buddy or a book or a laptop with some DVDs (whatever you need to entertain yourself) and go. Or wait until the middle of the night and go and hope that they’re slow. But go.

PandoraBoxx's avatar

A splint from the drug store is less than $5 and reusable.

gailcalled's avatar

A splint is reusable but a deformed index finger may not be.

avvooooooo's avatar

@gailcalled And just think how sad he’ll be if he can’t play Xbox because his finger is fucked up permanently.

gailcalled's avatar

@avvooooooo: Oh, boo hoo. However, he apparently has other rewarding hobbies, from his profile.

avvooooooo's avatar

@gailcalled Soooo… He’d be really sad if it interfered with his joint rolling or bong… whatever one does to a bong to get it going.

gailcalled's avatar

@avvooooooo You’re asking the wrong lady.

avvooooooo's avatar

@gailcalled LOL! I think we can agree that he would be very sad if it interfered in whatever he chose to do.

Buttonstc's avatar

OMG. That is too funny for words! I don’t often read profiles. Maybe I should start. I was taking my cue from the avatar alone.

I just came back from the profile and I could hardly believe it was for real.

Let’s just put it this way; if I were investing that much time and energy into drugs, I sure wouldn’t be bragging about it and listing it under areas of expertise.

Yeah that old TV anti drug commercial with the fried egg as the brain on drugs sure got that one right.

Something tells me this guy will be way too busy to do much Fluthering. And his finger will hurt too much to be able to type. I just can’t seem to be able to muster up much pity though.

Does that make me mean or just realistic?

mollypop51797's avatar

as @pdworkin has said, much earlier, you finger does start healing again, but there is no certainty that it’s going to heal back the right way. If not, you will feel pain or joint aches…so it will have to mend together again the right way. And yes, get an x-ray. But a good splint is to get popsicle stick (or the sticks that pediatricians use to check childrens’ tongues because they are wider) then get some medical tape, or an ace bandage, or a medical bandage of some sort rap it around and leave it on there. Hope this helps, and one thing that you should probably avoid is over using it like typing with it or playing the x box or whatever hurts it!

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