Orthopedic Trauma Directions 2006; 4(5): 21-28
DOI: 10.1055/s-2006-944323
Clinical topic
© Georg Thieme Verlag Stuttgart · New York

Conservative treatment for closed fifth metacarpal (small finger) fractures

Early versus delayed mobilization
Further Information

Publication History

Publication Date:
09 October 2006 (online)


Evidence from five small, quasi-randomized control trials (class of evidence II) indicates that initially, range of motion may be better for patients with early mobilization compared with delayed mobilization; however, differences were minimized by three to six months. Early mobilization patients may experience greater joint motion and return to work sooner. There is no significant difference in reports of pain between treatment groups. Additional rigorous comparative studies that use validated assessments and are large enough to detect rare complications (ie, nonunion, rotation) are needed.