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What you Need to Know About Achenbach Syndrome

Achenbach’s syndrome, also known as paroxysmal finger haematoma or “blue finger,” is a rare condition that results in spontaneous and recurrent episodes of sudden pain, bruising and swelling of one or more fingers. Subcutaneous bruising is most likely due to minor fragility of capillaries or a small vein in the palm skin. Preceding minor trauma may be recalled in 30% of cases such as sweeping, handwashing of clothing, or cycling. There is no associated serious cause for easy bruising such as a clotting disorder or vascular abnormality. Symptoms are usually described as a burning sensation or pain in one or more fingers followed by purplish or bluish bruising associated with swelling, numbness and sometimes limitation of movement. The condition can also be entirely painless. The condition has a benign course, and the bruising disappears spontaneously after a few days. The most affected region is the palm surface of the left hand, involving most frequently the index followed by the middle finger, and especially the proximal or medial phalanges. Rare cases may involve the thumb. Achenbach syndrome has been predominantly reported in middle-aged females, with a median age of onset of 48–50 years-old. If your fingers are swelling without an obvious explanation, you should see a hand doctor as soon as possible. While there is no cure for Achenbach Syndrome (PFH), there are several treatment options available to relieve the symptoms. In mild cases of PFH, the hand doctor may recommend rest and immobilization of the affected fingers – which may involve wearing a splint or brace to prevent movement and reduce the swelling. Applying a cold compress to the affected fingers may help reduce swelling and relieve pain. This may involve using ice packs, cold packs, or a bag of frozen peas wrapped in a towel. (Note: Never apply ice directly to the skin!). Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) may be prescribed by a hand doctor to reduce inflammation and relieve pain. In more severe cases, a doctor may prescribe corticosteroids to reduce swelling and inflammation. In rare cases, surgery may be necessary to drain the hematoma and relieve the pressure on the affected fingers. This involves making a small incision in the finger and draining the accumulated blood. If you have concerns about bruising in your palm or fingers, consult a doctor as soon as possible.

Source: Science Direct


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