Hand injuries in general tend to be disregarded by both patients and doctors, until it happens to oneself. Never was this more the case than in thumb injuries, as the importance of the thumb is usually under appreciated, until injured.
Injuries of the thumb are fairly common in sporting activities.
In skiing they are reported to be the second most frequent injury after the knee. In detail thumb injuries are reported to make up between 5% – 20% of all injuries in Alpine skiing and are sustained by approximately 80,000-240,000 patients per year world wide. The Ski Thumb is an injury affecting the ulnar collateral ligament (UCL) at the metacarpophalangeal joint of the thumb. The mechanism is due to the forces which are applied when a skier falls with the pole in his/her hand. The handle of the pole will act as a fulcrum applying forces across the joint and thereby putting the ligament under strain. The skier hits the surface with high velocity (high energy trauma). If the hand is stretched out as a natural reflecx, there is a significant chance that the thumb will be forced outwards resulting in a fracture of the UCL.
The goal of the new level thumb protector is to help prevent injury to the ucl and bone structures of the thumb.