Baseball finger or Mallet finger
Baseball finger is a condition involving the tendons that straighten the fingers. It is quite common in many sports where the ball hits the top of the finger. This cause the finger joints to bend. If they bend past their normal range the tendons that straighten the fingers get stretched beyond their limit and may detach from the end of the finger. In some cases a fracture or dislocation may have occurred at the same time.
Symptoms of Baseball finger
• pain, swelling and redness at the tip of the involved finger
• an inability to straighten the top of the finger
Diagnosis and treatment
Your doctor will diagnose Baseball finger. They will treat any other associated injuries to the finger and then it will be immobilized in a splint. The splint will position the finger so that appropriate healing of the tendon can occur. Following the period of immobilization physiotherapy will aim to restore full function of the finger and hand. This would involve reducing any residual pain and swelling and gradually improving full range of motion and strength. Finally your physiotherapist will guide you in your return to sport and educate you in preventative measures to prevent re-injury (e.g. taping).