Crack in skin on thumb.

Discussion in 'Health & Fitness' started by Maverick16, Nov 5, 2009.

  1. Maverick16

    Maverick16 New User

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    Every time I play tennis I develop a deep, painful crack in my thumb.
    I've tried using hand cream and using duct tape, but unfortunately the tape comes off when I start to sweat.
    It looks like a cut, but it is not a cut, just a deep crack.
    Has anyone else experienced this and do you have any suggestions?
    [​IMG]
     
    #1
  2. OHBH

    OHBH Semi-Pro

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    This happens to me all of the time. Especially once its starts to get cool and dry outside. I always just use a band aid with neosporin. I keep it on while I sleep to let it heal and replace the band aid a couple times a day. There is nothing that will stay on all day long
     
    #2
  3. advantagetennis1

    advantagetennis1 New User

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    superglue it or use liquid bandage
     
    #3
  4. charliefedererer

    charliefedererer Legend

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    Try some Vasoline just on the cut area itself. Start wrapping medical tape around the thumb well below the crack to anchor it, and then continue it up over the area with the crack to protect it.
     
    #4
  5. Maverick16

    Maverick16 New User

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    Thanks for the suggestions guys.
    I've started using the polysporin and band aide.
    I will try the liquid bandage as well.
    It's hard to use tape because it's on the part of the thumb that bends.
    cheers
     
    #5
  6. AlpineCadet

    AlpineCadet Hall of Fame

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    For some odd reason, I never have sweaty hands while playing tennis, but I have sweaty palms when I get nervous outside of tennis. My skin on my thumb has been "cracking" since 2 years ago, and my best way to fight it off is to prevent the skin from drying in the first place. If it's already cracked, use slim strips of tape to wrap around your thumb so the cracks won't worsen.
     
    #6
  7. Bud

    Bud Bionic Poster

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    Use paper tape and wrap well below and above the crack after dressing it. It's very flexible and will not come off easily when sweating.

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Nov 6, 2009
    #7
  8. joe sch

    joe sch Hall of Fame

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    I would recommend liquid bandage, works good for me with this issue.

    Why its better than super glue:

    First aid antiseptic pain reliever.
    Antiseptic to help prevent infection.
    Antiseptic pain relief.
    Invisible.
    Flexible.
    Waterproof.
     
    #8
  9. sphinx780

    sphinx780 Professional

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    I just taped mine up and now the callous is built up enough that I don't end up getting the crack any longer...although I'm sure that everyone's hands react differently to the situation.
     
    #9
  10. mark999

    mark999 Rookie

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    i have the same thing when it gets cold. get some 40-50% urea creme. if you have a prescription plan get a prescription from your doctor -name brand is carmol 40, but i just get the generic brand. rub creme as often as you like, but definitely overnite. it will soften the cracks and heal them. also try "gloves in the bottle" prevents hands from drying out when it's cold out.
     
    #10
  11. LuckyR

    LuckyR Legend

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    Uummm... thanks for the visual. None of that advice worked for me. My problem was a crack in the callus that went down to the "regular" skin level. I had the best luck removing the callus (sanding or clipping) so the depth of the crack is zero, ie the bottom of the crack is flush with the regular skin level because the callus isn't there anymore. Then it healed quickly like a regular shallow cut (instead of taking forever trying to heal callus to callus across the crack).

    Good luck.
     
    #11
  12. jazzyfunkybluesy

    jazzyfunkybluesy Banned

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    To prevent this from happening in the future I changed my grip on the backhand side to putting my thumb behind the racquet. I know its unorthodox but I havent had 1 split thumb since. I also have improved stability, control and power on my 1hbh.
     
    #12
  13. iplaytennislolol

    iplaytennislolol New User

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    This happens to me a lot, and I have eczema, which tends to worsen the condition. Even when you're not playing tennis, just overnight you could also try applying Vaseline on the crack and wearing a cotton glove (not sure where you actually would get the cotton gloves but I think mine came with my case of Vaseline) to help it heal.
     
    #13
  14. miki

    miki New User

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    BAG BALM - magic
     
    #14
  15. apor

    apor Rookie

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    I had the same problem.
    Use lotion before you play, after you play, during the day etc. That way you keep your callous supple, and instead of ripping, it'll stretch.
    You might want to get a tacky grip if you use any lotion before a match- but if you didn't use lotion, and your hands are dry, that same tacky grip will rip your thumb like never before.
     
    #15
  16. lwto

    lwto Professional

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    LOL, nice pic.. yuck!

    But the person that suggested super glue was right on..

    It was first used during the Vietnam war to stop bleeding and is still used.
    Rock climbers use it for quick first aide when climbing.

    I get thumb splits constantly and use it. works perfect.

    What you do is apply just a drop, then you can sand it down so there is no bump and it is pretty seamless with the added benifit that it wont slip off like a wrapping would.
     
    #16
  17. Vyse

    Vyse Semi-Pro

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    let it heal. once you start playing, the pain should subside
     
    #17
  18. EKnee08

    EKnee08 Professional

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    Great advice! Cotton gloves with cream or vaseline will help. The cotton gloves are sold at any drugstore or mom and pop pharmacy. As the weather gets colder and dryer, this problem can worsen. So, ot only for the cracking but for sinus and respiratory health, during the winter you should use a cool mist humidifer.

    I had this same problem for 20 years and not just on my thumb because I also swimmed on a daily basis and the chlorine magnified the problem. The key with the cracking and/or eczema is to keep the area dry. I stopped swimming and the condition went away with the following additional steps!
    My internist who had the same problem advised me to wear surgical latex gloves without powder when showering held with rubber bands on my wrist so as to not get any water on my hands. In addition, I was advised to and used used Cetaphil Daily Cleanser as my hand soap rather than regular soap. Cetaphil can be used with or without water to clean/ wash your hands. When the cracking is bad, you can use the cetaphil without water. Apply the cetaphil to your hands and rub them together. Remove the excess with a paper towel. Instructions are on the bottle. Cetaphil also acts as a softener/moisturizer.

    After a very short time, the cracking disappeared. It has never really returned.

    I now use cetaphil as my regular hand soap with water. At the first sign of cracking, I use the cetaphil without soap. However, I have never had the problem again.
     
    #18
  19. Toad

    Toad Rookie

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    I used to get this all the time on both thumbs and my dominant hands index finger. Now I just always tape those areas before I play and I haven't had any more problems. I use this stuff (can be found pretty much anywhere...get mine at Wal-Mart...I think I've seen the stuff Bud suggested there as well):

    http://www.amazon.com/Johnson-Coach...ef=sr_1_7?ie=UTF8&s=hpc&qid=1258048455&sr=1-7

    I just tear it in half and put it where my fingers crack. This stuff is pretty flexible and stays on even if you start sweating.
     
    #19
  20. Maverick16

    Maverick16 New User

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    I found something that finally worked for me.
    It's called "Curel Ultra Healing" and no more cracks.
    It is a little more greasy than other creams I tried and thus takes a little longer to absorb, nothing like Vaseline which I find never really absorbs.
    Lasts a long time too.
    I highly recommend it.
     
    #20
  21. AlpineCadet

    AlpineCadet Hall of Fame

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    Has anyone tried superglue? I tried it when I didn't have any tape and it stung like the dickens.
     
    #21
  22. charliefedererer

    charliefedererer Legend

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    I don't think superglue is a very good idea. The solvent is toxic to the cells at the bottom of the cut. Then, as soon as it dries, it forms a barrier to prevent the two edges of the wound from touching each other so the wound can't heal. And it stings.
     
    #22
  23. r2473

    r2473 Legend

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    Rub some dirt on it kid.
     
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  24. El Diablo

    El Diablo Hall of Fame

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    I'd be hesitant to put glue on an open skin crack, or a closed area of skin for that matter. Solvents can be carcinogens and organic solvents penetrate the skin relatively well.
     
    #24
  25. mike53

    mike53 Professional

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    I was in Walgreens this morning and I saw a product made specifically for this problem. But it costs over 7 dollars and I wasn't really convinced that it was anything more than the "new skin" stuff I use now.
     
    #25
  26. goran_ace

    goran_ace Hall of Fame

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    Aquaphor by Eucerin is also great as long as you are not playing at the time (it can be a little greasy).

    On court, I'd tape up before playing.
     
    #26
  27. mary fierce

    mary fierce Banned

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    Concerning solvents and cancer, benzene is a known carcinogen and toluene a suspected carcinogen; both are used in glues.
     
    #27
  28. LuckyR

    LuckyR Legend

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    Though thumb cancer is quite rare...
     
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  29. El Diablo

    El Diablo Hall of Fame

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    .....and since mouth cancer is rare, putting carcinogens in your mouth ought not be a problem.
     
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  30. mike53

    mike53 Professional

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    I would confine my use of superglue to my shoes unless I knew that I had a medicinal product. Remember what happened in Panama when they used industrial gylcerin in cough medicine?
     
    #30
  31. dman72

    dman72 Hall of Fame

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    I have the same issue..I thought it was something on my grips that was maybe causing an allergic reaction.
     
    #31
  32. tennisdude083

    tennisdude083 Semi-Pro

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    this is exactly what i do. neosporin works really well for me.
     
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  33. Fedace

    Fedace Banned

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    Scrape off the hard callous and put a bandage over it. mine heals in 3 days. if it cracks open in the match, put a waterproof bandaid on it Before the match. It will affect your feel but not as bad. i could play a match with the bandaid on.
     
    #33
  34. coachjb2u

    coachjb2u New User

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    Could be a picture of my thumb

    I have the same exact issue. In fact, that could be a picture of my own thumb. Polysporen works to help it heal. If you're like me, you can't just stop playing to let it heal because I play in 3 different leagues and have to play. Mine has to heal while i play so I use the white athletic tape like the trainers for my high school football team used to tape up ankles. I tear it into strips about ½ inch wide and about 8" long, and wrap it around the callus when I have to play. If you've ever seen Nadal's left hand you'll see most of his fingers and thumb are usually taped when he plays too. The athletic tape stays in place pretty well even when you are sweating.
    If you know anyone who sells Melaluca products, there's a hand lotion called Renew that's helpful in preventing the callus from cracking. Mine only cracks now when I forget to use this cream.
     
    #34
  35. Chas Tennis

    Chas Tennis Hall of Fame

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    Eczema

    I have eczema on two fingers. Dry skin and a few cracks. It is an allergic type condition and is not contagious. The Dr examined scrapings under a microscope and diagnosed eczema. At first it came and went but it does not go away for long now.

    I believe that Vaseline in gloves at night would help as it did at first. But I had a hard time finding gloves that would contain the grease. Vaseline attacks rubber. Any recommendations? I also found it too difficult to live without getting my hands wet.

    I do not believe that mine will go away............but I'm very interested in the replies.
     
    Last edited: Nov 12, 2012
    #35

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