Flexor Tendon

Flexor tendon injuries are common among football players, wrestlers, and rock climbers but are not exclusive to sports injuries. Flexor tendon injuries affect the tendons located within the palm of your hand that allow your fingers to bend. Flexor tendons originate at the elbow and forearm as muscles and turn into tendons just past the middle of the forearm. These tendons run closely along the bones of your fingers on the palm side of your hand.

Because of their location and closeness to the skin, flexor tendons can become injured easily. This is typically in the form of a cut or trauma to the palm or fingers. Injuries often prevent you from bending your fingers or produce pain when bending your fingers. Contact our hand and wrist specialists to determine if this condition may be affecting you.


  • Pain, tenderness, or swelling in the palm and fingers
  • Decreased ability to bend your fingers
  • Decreased sensation in the palm and fingers or numbness in your fingertips


  • Cut or laceration on the palm of the hand or fingers. This can be minor or severe to the point of complete laceration or rupture of the tendon.
  • Crushing injuries such as slamming a finger in a door or as a result of occupational tasks
  • Sports injuries such as stretching of the tendon or “jersey finger”
  • Broken bones
  • General hand or finger trauma
  • Rheumatoid arthritis

Risk Factors

  • Participating in sports such as football, wrestling, or rock climbing
  • Occupations where risk of hand injury or crushing is higher
  • Arthritis


  • Physical examination of the affected area
  • X-ray to show bone health
  • MRI or ultrasound to show the extent and location of the injured tendon

Treatment Options

  • Wearing a finger splint to allow the tendon to heal in proper alignment
  • Physical therapy
  • Nonsteroidal, anti-inflammatory medications for pain relief
  • Surgical repair may be recommended for severe cases and is generally an outpatient procedure