A fracture of a bone, also known as a broken bone, occurs when there is enough trauma to the bone to cause disruption of the bone’s structure. When a bone breaks, there is pain from the nerve endings around the bone and from the swelling which occurs due to bleeding from the bone edges. If the fracture occurs near a joint, it can also cause disruption of the joint’s normal smooth covering (called the articular cartilage) potentially leading to arthritis in the future. Fractures of the hand may include the multiple bones of the wrist (carpal bones), the long bones of the hand (metacarpals) and / or the small finger bone (phalanges). The body has the ability to heal most fractures with appropriate positioning and immobilization, however it is important to know whether or not a fracture is in the correct place. Sometimes a splint or cast is needed to hold a broken bone in place. Sometimes surgery with metallic hardware is needed to place the bone in the correct position and hold it in place. It is important to have a full evaluation and workup if you have a broken bone to try to get the best result possible for your injury.