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Thread: Left Pinky bent back catching a football

  1. #1
    Forum Contributor 2009 saxguy007's Avatar
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    Default Left Pinky bent back catching a football

    ...makes me appreciate how critical each and every one of our ten digits are!

    I caught a football throw from my boy off-center Sunday afternoon (four days ago), and it bent and hyperextended my left pinky back.

    I put it on ice right away, but alas, overnite my pinky got a bit purple on the front (fingerprint) side and swollen. I begged off of big band rehearsal last nite (I play the bari chair with tons of low Bb's, B's and A's), and have a gig this Sat nite (in two days).

    I seem to have retained dexterity in the pinky, and almost all the bruising has gone away, but it is still tender when I try to curl it, and it's a bit stiff.

    Has this happened to anyone else? How long until back to normal? Anyone ever have the finger never able to curl again the same way?

    Jim
    Covering the bari part- because no-one else owns one...
    Cannonball "Lady Godiva" Vintage, Selmer Ref 36 and Barone MAC 8 tenors; Cannonball Stone Series and Mk VII altos; Cannonball Stone series soprano and bari

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    Distinguished SOTW Member Agent27's Avatar
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    Default Re: Left Pinky bent back catching a football

    Quote Originally Posted by saxguy007 View Post
    Anyone ever have the finger never able to curl again the same way?

    Jim
    Not from having it hyperextended, but I had tendonitis in my left pinky and ring finger and the pinky has never fully gotten back to where it was before. I can curl it just fine, but I don't have the same degree of control over it that I had before. It mainly only affects my typing and saxophone playing but I've learned to adjust.

  3. #3

    Default Re: Left Pinky bent back catching a football

    Kind of the same thing happened to me last winter. Wrecked on my bicycle one icy morning. Broke my right hand pinkie. Played a concert three days later. Reaching low D# and low C actually REALLY hurt. A year later and I still am weak on that finger. Doesn't hurt as much but i doubt that finger will ever be as strong as it once was. It is permanently bent (I did not go to the doc and get it straightened, I know some folks used to put popsicle sticks on both sides of the finger to protect as it healed up). So I think I am a little slower trilling on keys in that area.

    Saxguy007, I would not push it as far as trying to play (too hard) until it is fairly strong again.

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    Default Re: Left Pinky bent back catching a football

    I dislocated the middle joint (which I ought to remember the proper term of) a couple of years back. It never has or will be the same, neither in terms of cosmetics or function. I can no longer play the left pinky cluster on vintage horns save for Selmer layout. Insufficient strength. From your description, I think you will recover fully, but if you don't give it rest for recovery, you are asking for trouble.

  5. #5
    Distinguished SOTW Member/Logician Grumps's Avatar
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    Default Re: Left Pinky bent back catching a football

    I used to jam my fingers all the time when I played basketball. When it would happen, I'd quickly jank on the hurt digit to make sure it was back in place. With any lingering pain, I'd just play through it.

    Now I did break my left index finger in high school. I went to my band director hoping to get out of marching band, but was told I'd just have to march in place without playing. Well, that would have been torture. So I quickly adjusted my left hand fingerings with my middle finger on the B key, ring finger on the A and pinkie on the G. I could slide my pinkie to hit G# as well, but just had to blow the bottom notes up an octave. It was kinda weird how easy that adjustment was for me. Just did it without thinking.

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    Distinguished SOTW Member Woody Reed's Avatar
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    Default Re: Left Pinky bent back catching a football

    I tore the ligament off the top of the same your finger you messed up back in 08 reaching in my pocket to pay the attendant in a car park. The tip went sideways in a L shape. Ironically, it was a car park at the hospital where I was picking up my son from a Lacrosse injury. I just turned around and went back into the ER. That is after I got out of the car and blew chunks from the pain. The tip had to be kept straight constantly for 8 to 12 weeks. If it dropped once, the whole process had to start over. My doc made me a special brace for playing, that allowed the knuckle to bend.

    Looking for a silver lining;
    1. If you have to mess up a digit, left pinky or right thumb would be it.
    2. For G#, it was easier to just hit the C# ket which works the same. I actually got used to the openness of the right hand keys with the C# open and use it all the time now.

    Oh, and it only bends about 2/3rds of what it was before. Not and issue though.
    Last edited by Woody Reed; 12-02-2011 at 05:26 PM. Reason: answered the OPs last question too.

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    Default Re: Left Pinky bent back catching a football

    Quote Originally Posted by Grumps View Post
    I used to jam my fingers all the time when I played basketball. When it would happen, I'd quickly jank on the hurt digit to make sure it was back in place. With any lingering pain, I'd just play through it.
    In that case, it probably wasn't dislocated or had been so before. It is virtually impossible to pull back in place on your own if it is the first time. I hurt mine playing basketball as well. After the hit, it looked like a perfect
    Z.
    It took 6ft 5in muscular orthopedic surgeon three attempts while sweating like a pig before that thing slapped back in place. Breaking the finger cleanly is actually preferable. Bone heals a lot better than cartilage.

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