Infections of the finger often require medical attention to resolve.
There are a few different types of finger infections and it is important to understand the differences. Fingertip infections, also known as felons, are located at the fingertip pad. A paronychia is an infection that involves the soft tissue that surrounds the fingernail. Septic tenosynovitis of the finger is an infection of the fluid-filled sheath that surrounds the tendons. Finger infections can be very painful and persistent. Most finger infections are due to bacteria, however fungal infections are also commonly seen. Initially these infections may be treated with oral antibiotics, or antifungal medication if a fungal infection is suspected, and warm soaks. If an abscess develops it should be drained as a more definitive treatment. If the infection persists despite drainage and antibiotics, it may be necessary to surgically irrigate and debride the infected tissue. In the case of a paronychia, removal of the nail and cut the tissue just beneath the nail(eponychium) to allow complete resolution of the infection. Similarly, septic tenosynovitis often requires an incision, drainage and irrigation of the infected tendon sheath. Our hand specialists can address this issue in our office through clinical examination, imaging, and drainage when needed. If the issue becomes surgical, it may be done as a same day procedure at a local hospital or surgery center.
Every patient receives an in-depth consultation to devise a treatment plan that is right for their problem. Our specialists prefer non-operative and non-invasive treatments whenever possible, including physical therapy, medications, and/or injections. When we require surgery, we will then use minimally invasive surgical techniques to fix your problem, whether it is fixing a broken bone or repairing a tendon. Our goal is always to get you back to living your life normally as soon as possible.