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Proximal phalanges (hand)

The proximal phalanges (hand) are the bones that are found at the bottom of the finger. They are named proximal because they are the closest phalanges to the metacarpals. There are fourteen phalanges in each hand. Three are located in each long finger, and two are located in the thumb. The knobby ends of the phalanges help form knuckle joints. Injuries to the phalanges include closed bone fracture, open bone fracture, muscle strain, and luxation. In closed bone fracture, a bone is broken but does not break through the skin. In open bone fracture, a bone is broken and breaks through the skin. This is also known as “compound fracture.” In muscle strain, the muscle attached to the phalanx is injured, which causes pain. In luxation, the bones at a joint are separated. This is also known as “dislocation.” The easiest way to treat most injuries to the phalanges is to splint the finger for at least four weeks. More serious injuries to the proximal phalanges (hand) will require surgery. Individuals who have had surgery to the proximal phalanges (hand) should return to the surgeon for a follow-up visit at least two weeks after surgery. The surgeon will take x-rays to observe the bone and ensure proper healing is taking place.

Written and medically reviewed by the Healthline Editorial Team
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In Depth: Proximal phalanges (hand)

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