Hand laceration (cut in the skin)

Hands | General Practice | Hand laceration (cut in the skin) (Disease)


Sharp injuries to the hand, fingers and thumb are very common. Most are quite minor injuries, but it is important that these injuries are properly assessed and treated. There are many important structures, particularly tendons and nerves in the hand; if these structures are damaged, meticulous and expert repair is required.

The symptoms of a laceration include pain, bleeding, swelling, and bruising to the skin. Worsening redness, swelling, and tenderness around a laceration are signs of a skin infection, called cellulitis.

Causes and Risk factors

A person with a laceration has a cut, or tear, in the skin, caused by an injury. Lacerations of the hand can be simple involving only the skin or complex with injury to tendons, nerves and/or blood vessels. With tendon lacerations there is weakness of the hand and/or fingers, and with nerve damage numbness is experienced beyond the laceration.

Diagnosis and Treatment

In hand lacerations as in the majority of cases, the treatment for a laceration includes wound irrigation, wound cleansing, and laceration repair. Additional treatment for lacerations may include a tetanus vaccine, antibiotics, and pain medications. ...