Avoid the Carving Hand Injury

The fall season is upon us and it brings fun things like pumpkin patches, Halloween candy, football and turkey. However, there are two events that may be very scary for your hands: pumpkin and turkey carving.

“Every year during Thanksgiving and throughout the holiday season, people sustain hand injuries while preparing their holiday feast. From cutting open pumpkins to carving the mouthwatering centerpiece, hand injuries are all too common.”(ASSH)

Dr. Clint Walker, Dr. Suzanne Elton, and Dr. Stephen Hiatt three of our hand surgeons at Kansas City Bone & Joint Clinic note an increase in carving hand injuries through the month of October and November.



When asked about carving injuries for the fall, Dr. Elton explained, “Deep lacerations to the hand, especially the palm side, can cause damage requiring surgery and a long rehabilitation. These injuries can be prevented by taking simple precautions. Most commonly the non-dominant hand is injured while carving. When carving, make sure that you are cutting away from your fingers, and don’t take unnecessary risks.”

If you are injured while pumpkin carving, wash the wound with soap and water and use a bandage while applying pressure. Most superficial wounds stop bleeding within a few minutes, and avoid checking the injury too frequently to see if it is still bleeding since this could disrupt a clot. Dr. Goldberg added, “You should seek medical attention at an emergency room if bleeding does not stop within 10-15 minutes of firm pressure or if you have any new numbness, tingling, severe pain or loss of motion of any finger joint.” ASSH




For more easy tips on how to avoid injury and when to see a hand surgeon, visit the American Society for Surgery of the Hand

Written by: Amy M Roberts, MS ATC/L

Kansas City Bone & Joint Clinic

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