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Hand and Wrist Anatomy

The wrist and hand are among the most utilized articulations in the body, and considering how delicate and small the bones are, the wrist is also one of the most often injured areas on the body. The joints of the wrist and hand are very delicate and prone to inflammation due to overuse from repetitive motion. Even the nerves are often subject to inflammation, either from a traumatic injury or repetitive use.

One of the common areas for injury to the wrist and hand are to the median nerve, known as Carpal Tunnel Syndrome, as the median nerve passes through the carpal tunnel. This occurs due to repetitive use and is a chronic condition. Another area in the wrist prone to injury is the ulnar styloid, or the rounded end of the forearm bone called the ulna. This fracture, not commonly surgically repaired, responds 
Hand and Wrist Anatomy for Wrist Supports
well to rest and immobilization for healing.

In medical terminology, the bones of the fingers are called phalanges, and the bones that comprise the palm of the hand are the metacarpals. It’s said that the bones of the hand and wrist, along with their ligaments, joints, and tendons comprise the most complex part of the human anatomy. The small, slender bones, and intricate joints unfortunately make this one of the most vulnerable points of the skeleton, very susceptible to injury, 
trauma, and pain.

While there are so many possible ailments a patient can suffer from in regards to wrist injuries, the hands and wrist are incredible resilient – recovering from minor injuries in a matter of days and even healing from more serious injuries in a matter of weeks or months, usually with the patient regarding full use of the injured joints and ligaments. While the process and healing of the injuries isn’t pleasant, as odds tell us, many of us will incur injuries of this nature, it’s a relief to know how well you can recover from them and  that the healing process is remarkably fast. As complex as the anatomy of the wrist and hands are, the rehabilitating process is even more mysterious.


 Over the last 10 years, modern technology has come a long way in helping people with injuries to their wrist and hands. With specially contoured wrist brace supports and splints, the wrist is kept stabilized while healing without impairing the movement of the fingers and the hand. Many wrist braces even offer a specialized thumb splint called a thumb spica to further aid in the healing of the many injuries to the wrist and hands.


Hyaline Cartilage

Hyaline Cartilage

As with all the synovial joints in the body, the carpal, metacarpal and phalanges are covered with hyaline cartilage. This material cushions and provides a smooth surface which permits movement with minimal friction.
Ligaments

Ligaments

Ligaments connect bone to bone. Wrist stability is the result of the orientation of the individual carpal bones and their ligament connections. Wrist instability typically results from an interference of the ligamentous support between the carpal bones and between the radius and the carpals
 
Metacarpal

Metacarpal

The five metacarpals are bones that form concave palmar aspect of the hand. They articulate with four of the carpal bones of the wrist. They terminate with the phalanges (fingers) to form the MCP joints (knuckles) of the hand.
Metacarpal Phalangeal

Metacarpal Phalangeal

The Metacarpal Phalangeal Joint (MCP) is the articulation between the metacarpal bones of the hand and the first phalanges.
 
Nerves

Nerves

The hand and wrist are primarily innervated by two nerves; the Median and Ulnar nerves run the length of the arm providing the electrical impulses which allow the fingers, wrist and hand to move.
Ulnar Styloid

Ulnar Styloid

The ulnar styloid is the small process (bump) that protrudes at the wrist opposite the thumb and serves as an attachment site for the ulnar collateral ligament.
 
Wrist Movement

Wrist Movement

Hand and wrist movement (or kinematics as it is called), is important when it comes to the hand and wrist anatomy and the function of the hand and wrist.
 
 

Hand and Wrist Anatomy

Wrist and hand anatomy, including hyaline cartilage, nerves, ligaments, ulnar styloid, metacarpal, and metacarpal phalangeal.

Wrist anatomy, hand anatomy, hayaline cartilage, nerves, ligaments, ulnar styloid, metacarpal, metacarpal phalangeal