Subungual hematomas are one of the most common injuries involving the hand. On conducting a literature search, we were unable to find any studies that investigated the association between subungual hematomas, fractures, and the presence of an occult laceration of the nail bed requiring repair. Forty-seven consecutive patients who presented to the emergency department with subungual hematoma involving more than one fourth of the nail bed were included in this study. In these cases, radiographs were taken, and the nail was lifted to look for a laceration. In the subgroup of patients who had subungual hematoma associated with a fracture, all of them had a laceration requiring repair. Patients with a subungual hematoma greater than one half of the size of the nail bed had a 60% incidence of a laceration requiring repair. The authors believe that patients presenting with a subungual hematoma involving greater than one half of the nail surface and a fracture of the distal phalanx should have the nail lifted and the nail bed explored and repaired.
Full text links
We have located links that may give you full text access.