Stephen J. Schueler, M.D.

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Fractured Wrist Ring Removal

Remove rings immediately after a wrist fracture, because it is difficult to remove the ring if the finger becomes swollen. Sometimes, the finger becomes so swollen that the ring must be removed with a ring cutter. The following will help you remove a ring from a swollen finger.

Ring Removal

  • Elevate the finger above the heart and apply a cold compress for 15-20 minutes.
  • Lubricate the ring:
    • Apply soapy water to the ring.
  • Ask another person to pull the skin tightly away from the ring, and then try to twist the ring off gently.
    • Stop if this causes pain or skin damage.
  • If this does not work, loop a piece of thin string or ribbon under the ring on both sides of the finger. Ask another person to grab the ends of both strings. Have the person pull equally on the ends of each string, while you gently twist the ring.

Reducing Finger Swelling
In order to reduce finger swelling, you may wrap a wide rubber band around the finger. Start at the tip of the finger and wrap towards the ring. Overlap the edges of the rubber band as you wrap the finger. After 5 minutes, remove the rubber band and try to remove the ring.

Do not wrap the finger with a rubber band of you have:

Seek medical care immediately for:

Continue to Fractured Wrist Warning Signs

Last Updated: Jan 10, 2011 References
Authors: Stephen J. Schueler, MD; John H. Beckett, MD; D. Scott Gettings, MD
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PubMed Fractured Wrist References
  1. Goldfarb CA, Ricci WM, Tull F, Ray D, Borrelli J Jr. Functional outcome after fracture of both bones of the forearm. J Bone Joint Surg Br. 2005 Mar;87(3):374-9. [15773649]
  2. Kelsey JL, Prill MM, Keegan TH, Tanner HE, Bernstein AL, Quesenberry CP Jr, Sidney S. Reducing the risk for distal forearm fracture: preserve bone mass, slow down, and don't fall! Osteoporos Int. 2005 Jun;16(6):681-90. [15517189]
  3. Oskam J, Kingma J, Klasen HJ. Fracture of the distal forearm: epidemiological developments in the period 1971-1995. Injury. 1998 Jun;29(5):353-5. [9813678]
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