Complications of a broken wrist or broken hand are rare, but they may include:

  • Ongoing stiffness, aching or disability. Stiffness, pain or aching in the affected area generally goes away a month or two after your cast is removed or after surgery, and may continue improving for up to two years after the injury. However, you may have some permanent stiffness or aching if your injury was severe. Be patient with your recovery, and talk to your doctor about exercises that might help or for a referral to physical or occupational therapy.
  • Osteoarthritis. Fractures that extend into the joint may cause arthritis years later. If your wrist or hand starts to hurt or swell long after a break, see your doctor for an evaluation.
  • Nerve or blood vessel damage. Trauma to the wrist or hand can injure adjacent nerves and blood vessels. Seek immediate attention if you notice any numbness or circulation problems.
July 17, 2014