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Used aluminum clam cast for broken thumb. How long does it take to get cured?

Feb 2014
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Answered by

Orthopaedic Surgeon, Joint Replacement
Practicing since : 2004
Answered : 5931 Questions
I broke a bone [distal phalanx] in my right thumb more than 2 months ago. i used a aluminum clam cast for a couple of weeks and on again off again sort of thing. It is still swollen and tender and not very flexable. it is frustrating as i need my thumb for so many things. Should I have another ex-ray? When should I find some relief?
Thank You
Posted Tue, 15 Jan 2013 in Bones, Muscles and Joints
Answered by Dr. Saurabh Gupta 1 hour later
Thanks for writing to us.

Generally fracture of phalanx takes 3-4 weeks time to heal if properly immobilized.

If swelling and tenderness persist, there might be possibility of delayed union or nonunion. The cause may be soft tissue interposition or malalignment. (which means soft tissue is getting in the way of the bones joining)

So I suggest you getting this evaluated by your doctor. You may get a repeat x-ray to see fracture union.

Meanwhile, you can take Tablet Motrin 1 tablet with food as and when required (upto 4 tablets daily) to reduce pain. Hot saline fomentation over thumb will help decrease joint stiffness.

Hope this answers your query. Let me know if you have any more concerns.

Wishing you good health...
Dr Saurabh Gupta.
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