This procedure is used to treat finger felons, which can be very painful.
What is Finger Felon Drainage?
Finger Felon Drainage is a procedure used to treat pressure and pain in a felon. This is accomplished by draining the pus from the abscess.
Who needs Finger Felon Drainage?
A felon is an abscess in the pad of the fingertip. This abscess can cause pain and pressure for you, as well as swelling. This is because the infection forms a pocket of pus that continues to expand.
What are the steps in Finger Felon Drainage?
Preparing for the Procedure
Once you have been placed in the proper position and your hand has been cleaned and sterilized, a local anesthesia may be applied, depending on the degree of swelling. In especially severe cases, your doctor may prefer to use general anesthesia. During a procedure with general anesthesia, you are asleep.
Draining the Felon
Your surgeon makes an initial incision in order to expose the area of infection. The incision's size and location depend on the characteristics of the abscess, such as where it it located, its severity, and its size. Usually, the incision is made over the point with the most swelling on the underside of the finger or the side of the finger. Once the incision has been made, the infected chambers are opened and the pus is drained. Your physician will remove any dead tissue or skin and will irrigate the wound.
Ending the Procedure
Once irrigation has been completed, loosely packed gauze or a small rubber drain may be used to hold the wound open. Finally, your doctor will apply a loose bandage.
Finger felon drainage is usually performed as an outpatient procedure. However, if the infection is severe, hospitalization and antibiotics may be required. After the procedure, patients usually heal within 2 to 4 weeks. Soaking the finger in a solution of hydrogen peroxide, saline or soapy water two to three times per day is often required during the healing period. Hand therapy may be also be required.