Skier's Thumb Follow-up

Updated: Sep 15, 2019
  • Author: Patrick M Foye, MD; Chief Editor: Sherwin SW Ho, MD  more...
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Follow-up

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In addition to the 6-8 weeks of immobilization with casting or splinting, the patient with skier's thumb should avoid activities that risk reinjury for approximately another 6 weeks. An orthosis can be fitted to protect the patient's thumb to prevent further delay in return to activity.

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Complications

Osteoarthritis of the first MCP joint may occur in patients with skier's thumb.

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Prevention

A small dorsal (or radial) gutter splint can be designed to fit within the glove of skiers and other athletes.

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Prognosis

When properly treated, patients with a UCL injury have a good prognosis for returning to their premorbid level of functioning. A missed diagnosis that delays the repair of a complete UCL rupture leads to a less favorable prognosis. Complications from delayed treatment of a complete tear may include neurapraxia (secondary to injury of the radial sensory nerve), stiffness (which usually improves with time), and persistent instability (which can eventually lead to MCP joint arthritic changes). [25]

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