Bennett's Fracture (Displaced)

Care After

Please read the instructions outlined below and refer to this sheet in the next few weeks. These discharge instructions provide you with general information on caring for yourself after you leave the hospital. Your caregiver may also give you specific instructions. While your treatment has been planned according to the most current medical practices available, unavoidable complications occasionally occur. If you have any problems or questions after discharge, please call your caregiver.

HOME CARE INSTRUCTIONS

  • Follow your caregiver's instructions as to activities, exercises, physical therapy, and driving a car.

  • Daily exercise is helpful for maintaining range of motion and strength. Exercise as instructed.

  • To lessen swelling, keep the injured hand elevated above the level of your heart as much as possible.

  • Apply ice to the injury for 15 to 20 minutes each hour while awake for the first 2 days. Put the ice in a plastic bag and place a thin towel between the bag of ice and your cast.

  • Move the fingers of your splinted hand several times a day.

  • If a plaster or fiberglass cast was applied:

  • Do not try to scratch the skin under the cast using a sharp or pointed object.

  • Check the skin around the cast every day. You may put lotion on red or sore areas.

  • Keep your cast dry. Your cast can be protected during bathing with a plastic bag. Do not put your cast into the water.

  • If a plaster splint was applied:

  • Wear the splint for as long as directed by your caregiver or until seen for follow-up exam.

  • Do not get your splint wet. Protect it during bathing with a plastic bag.

  • You may loosen the elastic bandage around the splint if your fingers start to get numb, tingle, get cold or turn blue.

  • Do not put pressure on your cast or splint; this may cause it to deform. Especially, do not lean plaster casts on hard surfaces for 24 hours after application.

  • Take medications as directed by your caregiver.

  • Only take over-the-counter or prescription medicines for pain, discomfort, or fever as directed by your caregiver.

SEEK MEDICAL CARE IF:

  • You have increased bleeding (more than a small spot) from beneath your cast or splint.

  • You develop redness, swelling, or increasing pain in the wound or from beneath your cast or splint.

  • There is pus coming from the wound or from beneath your cast or splint.

  • You have an unexplained oral temperature above 102° F (38.9° C).

  • A foul smell is coming from the wound or dressing or from beneath your cast or splint.

SEEK IMMEDIATE MEDICAL CARE IF:

  • You develop a rash.

  • You have difficulty breathing.

  • You have any allergy problems.

If you do not have a window in your cast for observing the wound, a discharge or minor bleeding may show up as a stain on the outside of your cast. Report these findings to your caregiver.

MAKE SURE YOU:

  • Understand these instructions.

  • Will watch your condition.

  • Will get help right away if you are not doing well or get worse.