It arises as a result of impacts to the farthest joint of the finger. The tendon (extensor tendon) which flattens the finger was injured in the area where it adheres to the bone on the farthest knot (distal phalanx). It is mostly observed after closed injuries that no cut is present on the finger.
When the patient was told to flatten his/her finger, she/he can not do this, the finger may be flatten by only with the other hand and the doctor who examines. (Figure 1)
In some cases it is observed that a small fracture accompanies the subject in direct X-rays. (Figure 2)
Ice application and non steroid anti inflammatory drugs will be useful for the pain in the early period (Figure 3). The patients without bone fractures may be treated with mallet finger brace which may be obtained from orthopaedic shops is applied for 2 months without taking off from the finger.
The decision that the patient may be followed by only the brace without any surgical intervention should be given by the doctor in this step.
Surgical intervention is required in cases with open injury and bone fracture. This intervention is performed with local anesthesia. Both fractured bone part and the injured tendon are repaired. By placing a wire which will keep the farthest two knots for approximately two months, the patient’s finger is fixed during this period.
Some of patients do not apply to a specialist by considering that it is only a problem of view. But some of untreated cases may become to a severe shape and movement problem that we call swan-neck deformity by shortening of injured tendon and moving to downward. Therefore, it is very important to get the concerned information from specialists and to have the recovery process under their follow-up.