In Case of Accident

I have just had the most horrible finger accident. Jamming my thumb into car boot door. Fortunately it is not broken. It is a crush injury and I consider myself very lucky that it was not worse.

I thought I would pass on some tips to others about what to do (and don’t do) if you encounter this.

Do – ice straight away. I was lucky an admin assistant was a nurse and was able to assist with this.

Do – get to a doctor or ER as soon as possible. Although you may have to wait, at least you can get seen to in reasonable time. Unfortunately, I left it until almost 24 hours thinking that it was just going to be a black thumbnail. The ice for the first few hours masked the pain, however, into the night it got much worse. After this point, the thumb was too painful to apply any cold pressure, so it was a no win situation. By about hour 22 I was shaking and sweating with pain. My local GP was both horrified and amazed at how long I had managed with this pain.

Do – get the thumbnail drained of blood. This removes the throbbing and pretty much most of the pain you will feel. I waited 36 hours to do this. By this time the blood will start to congeal and harder to drain but what was removed was definitely very helpful. You may think this procedure is painful but basically it is a little uncomfortable. You are feeling the pressure of the needle as it spins (the dr spins a large needle point into your nail) but the relief is worth it.

Do – get prescription medication – pain killers – work wonders. They have side effects, so be careful.

Do – continue to follow up with your Dr. There is still a long way to go with this. The prospect of losing the nail and growing a new one may certainly need proper medical management, particularly in the case of musicians.

This is day 4. Still a long way to go before I have a normal thumb.



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