Letters to the Editor

Treatment of Subungual Hematoma


Am Fam Physician. 2002 May 15;65(10):1997.

to the editor: The article “Fingertip Injuries”1 suggests that the appropriate treatment of a subungual hematoma with a distal tuft fracture is decompression with “two to three weeks of splinting.” I was taught not to open the subungual hematoma in the presence of a fracture because this would convert a simple closed fracture to an open fracture and thus complicate management. I was also instructed by an orthopedist that, in his opinion, such management was tantamount to malpractice. Was I instructed incorrectly?


1. Wang QC, Johnson BA. Fingertip injuries. Am Fam Physician. 2001;63:1691–6.

editor's note: This letter was sent to the authors of “Fingertip injuries,” who declined to reply.


Send letters to afplet@aafp.org, or 11400 Tomahawk Creek Pkwy., Leawood, KS 66211-2680. Include your complete address, e-mail address, and telephone number. Letters should be fewer than 400 words and limited to six references, one table or figure, and three authors.

Letters submitted for publication in AFP must not be submitted to any other publication. Possible conflicts of interest must be disclosed at time of submission. Submission of a letter will be construed as granting the AAFP permission to publish the letter in any of its publications in any form. The editors may edit letters to meet style and space requirements.

This series is coordinated by Kenny Lin, MD, MPH, Associate Deputy Editor for AFP Online.



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