Can I use Oval-8 splints to treat a Mallet Finger?
Yes you can. Oval-8s are ideal for treating Mallet Fingers. The Oval-8s will hold the DIP straight or if needed, they can be adjusted using the Precision Spot heat gun to hold the DIP in slight hyperextension. The open design keeps the skin clean and dry and generally no tape or strapping is needed to hold them in place. The wearer can shower or wash their hands with the Oval-8 on without having to replace straps or tape. This leads to better compliance and better treatment results.
What do I do if the wearer cannot tolerate the pressure on the dorsum (top) of the DIP joint?
We have the ideal solution for that. Use a piece of Gel Mate silicone gel or other thin gel sheeting to cushion the dorsum (top) of the joint. Cut a narrow strip and position it lengthwise on the finger. Do not wrap it around the joint as this takes up too much room and makes it hard to slide the Oval-8 on and off when needed for hygiene.
The Gel Mate provides a cushion and it helps to keep the Oval-8 in place. In most cases the same size Oval-8 splint will fit over the gel. If the gel makes the splint too tight, you may need to go up a half size (remember that there are two sizes designed into the splint) or it may be adjusted slightly using the Precision Spot heat gun.
Can the wearer still wash their hands and bathe with the gel in place?
Yes. All the wearer needs to do is carefully dry under and around the gel after washing. There is no need to remove the splint so there is no loss of treatment continuity.
How do I adjust Oval-8 splints?
To see how to adjust Oval-8s, we suggest you watch the Oval-8 video. Each Oval-8 also comes with an instruction card that highlights how to adjust the splints using the Precision Spot heat gun. You have the option of altering the angle at which the splint holds the finger, as well as the option to alter the length of the splint so the PIP joint can move freely.
Because Oval-8 splints are made from high-temperature plastic, you will need a heat gun to warm the plastic enough to adjust it permanently. Follow the directions carefully.