Skier’s thumb, also known as ulnar collateral ligament injury of the thumb, is an injury to the ulnar collateral ligament of the (MCP) metacarpophalangeal joint. It usually happens when there is a forceful impact and excessive outward movement of the thumb which happens when you fall onto the outstretched thumb.
Symptoms of Skier’s Thumb
- Pain is one of the primary symptoms of a skier’s thumb. It’s usually felt pain is typically felt at the base of the thumb.
- Swelling and bruising which is usually localized to the base of the thumb but may sometimes extend to the rest of the hand depending on the severity.
- Weakness and difficulty in In certain activities like turning a door knob, holding, gripping, or pinching objects
- Limited range of motion in the thumb
Skier’s Thumb is more common in people who relate to the following:
- Skiing or snowboarding
- Other sports and activities where there are repetitive thumb movements like rock climbing or martial arts
- Gender. It is more common in females which may be due possibly due to hormonal factors and hand anatomy.
Physiotherapy is very helpful for Skier’s thumb. It will focus on promoting healing, reducing pain, and restoring stability and functionality of the thumb. Splinting and taping may be used for stability of the thumb and cold compresses to reduce swelling, and if necessary. Strengthening and flexibility exercises are also crucial for the treatment of Skier’s thumb.
If you think you have Skier’s Thumb, book an appointment with one of our physiotherapists.