Download PDF
JERSEY FINGER
[Back]

What is it?
A “jersey finger” occurs when the tendon responsible for flexing the tip of the finger is torn. The most commonly injured finger is the ring finger. The torn tendon can slide as far back as the palm.

Causes
A “jersey finger” occurs when the tendon responsible for flexing the tip of the finger is torn. The most commonly injured finger is the ring finger. The torn tendon can slide as far back as the palm.

Risk Factors
Athletes participating in sports requiring frequent grasping.

Symptoms
• Pain and swelling on the palm side at the end of the affected finger • Inability to flex the tip of the finger • The finger may be in slight extension compared to the others

Diagnosis
Jersey fingers can be accurately diagnosed by a medical professional with experience in sports medicine. The sports medicine physician will perform a physical exam to locate the source of pain, and to test the strength and motion of the injured finger. Imaging studies such as x-rays, ultrasound, and MRI may assist in the evaluation, but are not always necessary.

Treatment
Initial treatment typically involves ice, pain relievers, and a finger splint. Jersey fingers require an operation to reattach the torn ligament to its original location. The timing of the operation is determined by how far the tendon slides back. A tendon that has slid back all the way to the palm will require surgery sooner than one that has slid back just a short distance. Return to play is dictated by an athlete’s ability to perform the activity necessary to compete in the sport.

Return to Play
After surgery, use of the hand will likely be limited for two months. Return to sports requiring forceful use of the hand may take three months or longer.

AMSSM Member Authors
Kyle Goerl, MD, Robert Dimeff, MD

References
Scott A, Docking S, Vicenzino B, et al. Sports and exercise-related tendinopathies: a review of selected topical issues by participants of the second International Scientific Tendinopathy Symposium (ISTS)Vancouver 2012. Br J Sports Med. 2013;47(9):536–44. doi:10.1136/bjsports-2013-092329.

Yuan T, Zhang C-Q, Wang JH-C. Augmenting tendon and ligament repair with platelet-rich plasma (PRP). Muscles Ligaments Tendons J. 2013;3(3):139–149. Available at: http://www.pubmedcentral.nih.gov/
articlerender.fcgi?artid=3838322&tool=pmcentrez&rendertype=abstract.

Category: Hand and Wrist,

[Back]

SPORTS MEDICINE TODAY NEWSLETTER

PODCASTS

HOME
WHAT IS A SPORTS MED PHYSICIAN?
ARTICLES
BEGINNER TRIATHLETE
POSITION STATEMENTS
AMSSM

FIND A SPORTS DOC

Please enter a search term relevant to the search type. For US States - use only letter abbreviations.
 
Choose Search Type
Enter Search Term

Zip Code:
Choose Search Radius:
2019 © The American Medical Society for Sports Medicine website created by  the computer geek
website security by: Website Guardian