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Infected finger- in agony, what to do?

(31 Posts)
cupofteaplease Mon 02-Jan-12 00:10:18

I would say I have w high pain threshold and don't like to make a fuss, but I'm in agony.

I started having pain by my fingernail 2 days ago and thought it was paronychia (sp?) so I've been bathing it in hot water. However, the infection has spread and my fingertip is swollen to what feels like bursting point.

It almost feels like pins and needles when you restrict the blood flow, yet it is pounding and feels red hot. If it brushes against anything, even fabric, the pain makes my toes curl and brings tears to my eyes. Ibuprofen and pain killers aren't touching the pain.

I've rung NHS direct but they said they are exceptionally busy so there is a 4 hour call back. I'm staying away from home so don't know the out of hours number, but there is an A&E just down the road. WIBU to go there? Or is the pain paddling my brain and they'll kick me out on my ear?

Please help, I'm miserable sad

OP’s posts: |
SmileItsSunny Mon 02-Jan-12 00:12:38

Have you got access to out of hours GP? That might be the most appropriate route. I hope you get seen to soon.

rubyrubyruby Mon 02-Jan-12 00:13:24

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

RancerDoo Mon 02-Jan-12 00:13:43

I think you should go to a&e. Sometimes antibiotics are in order, even for infected fingers. Best to get checked, especially as you think it is spreading.

Northernlurker Mon 02-Jan-12 00:14:38

Considering that your dds need you with working hands - especially B - I would go to A&E and beg for some help. Be sure to explain about B's needs when you go.

misspollysdolly Mon 02-Jan-12 00:16:47

Ooh, horrid and so painful as fingertips are such a sensitive part of your body sad - poor you. It sounds like the infection is peaking and while the A&E thing is tricky (since it is neither an accident or an emergency IYSWIM) it is probably the most appropriate port of call given the circumstances and the level of pain you are reporting. Hope it gets sorted soon. smile Take care. MPD

ScarlettIsWalking Mon 02-Jan-12 00:19:28

You need AB and quickly too as pyronchia soft tissue infection can turn to cellulitis if left. Don't mean to alarm you but they kept dd in for this as it can be v nasty.

lisad123 Mon 02-Jan-12 00:19:42

Try and get out of hours GP number. If you ring GP surgery the out of hours number should be on their answering machine message. You dont want to be say at A&E for hours and hours either, especially as you would be last on their list.

Bossybritches22 Mon 02-Jan-12 00:20:36

Go to A&E the finger might be swelling so tight the fingernail is acting like a clamp & it can cause nerve damage.

Sounds revolting but IF it's as it sounds from your description they can use a very tiny sharp drill to make a small hole in the nail & you instantly feel relief as pus comes out.

Not wanting to put you off -it works honestly!

Bignorkz Mon 02-Jan-12 00:23:36

Is there a patch of skin around the nail that looks a bit green/yellowish? If so you may be able to sterilise a needle and lance it by just piercing the surface if the skin...If you've got a lot of pus in there, squeeze it out and it might ease it a bit....then bathe in boiled and cooled salt water.

I've had this a number of times ( i'm a naughty nailbiter!) if the infection has damaged the nail bed you may lose the nail.

Failing that you might have to nip to a & e for some antibiotics, although you might have to wait a while...

Northernlurker Mon 02-Jan-12 00:28:52

DO NOT lance it yourself. Sorry but that's really dim advice. The nail is already infected. The op's chances of performing an aseptic procedure are basically nil with the equipment at her disposal. Just get the professionals involved. I've recently seen a friend with self lanced finger - two lots of antiobiotics and a lot of green tissue later it's just about healing after three weeks.

cupofteaplease Mon 02-Jan-12 00:31:18

Thanks for the advice. Am staying at PIL. Woke dh and asked him for the name of their local surgery and he just went back to sleep wails

Why does nighttime make everything feel worse? Northern Tell me about it, just setting up Bea's tube feed has left me close to tears.

I don't want to go to a&e and waste anyone's time, so I'll try and Google the local ooh number. Anyone from Banbury?!

OP’s posts: |
Bossybritches22 Mon 02-Jan-12 00:31:42

NT you are so right, please don't mess with it at this stage.

Northernlurker Mon 02-Jan-12 00:34:51

banbury nhs

Night feels worse because you feel alone but you aren't alone. Come on - go find a doctor to fix this tonight.

wonkylegs Mon 02-Jan-12 00:36:36

You need to go on the PCTs web page and you should find contact details for the out of hours services available in their area. There may be a walk in out of hours GP at the hospital.

imaginethat Mon 02-Jan-12 00:38:43

You can soak it in warm water and epsom salts (if you happen to have them - you can buy them at supermarket)... for as long as you can bear.

randommoment Mon 02-Jan-12 00:38:52

Not Banbury but Swindon, but I believe the same system. Kick DH until he wakes up and get him to take you to A and E. Shouldn't be too bad tonight, the worst of the idiot drunks were last night.

Bignorkz Mon 02-Jan-12 00:49:12

Sorry OP it was just a solution that worked for me given your desperation, wasn't intended to be " dim advice". Hope you get sorted soon.

Northernlurker Mon 02-Jan-12 00:50:37

Also sorry - rude of me to say 'dim'. Just the OP does not need to make it worse and you could be lucky - like you - or you could be very unlucky.

fishfingersandcustard Mon 02-Jan-12 01:00:01

Oxfordshire OOH is 0845 345 8995
Hope you feel better soon.

OnSantasLap Mon 02-Jan-12 01:12:46

If you have to go to casualty then try Cirencester as shorter wait times and better class of drunk compared to Swindon wink

Or can you find an all night chemist and pick up some zinc paste (or is it magnesium?) it's great at drawing out the infection while waiting for docs appointment

cupofteaplease Mon 02-Jan-12 02:13:03

I'm waiting for the out of hours doctor to call me back.

OP’s posts: |
ChippingInLovesChristmasLights Mon 02-Jan-12 02:16:34

Cup - please go tonight to A&E. My Dad had this a few years ago, being a man he took it all in his stride, put some germoline on it etc but eventually Mum badgered him into going to the Drs - who sent him straight to the hospital and rang ahead. They did something relatively minor and he was lucky - they said he was hours away from losing his finger shock.

PILs can mind the 2 big girls & maybe Bea, so get DH out of bed and get him to take you somewhere that can help you!!

cupofteaplease Mon 02-Jan-12 03:26:17

Ahh, blessed relief!! smile

Out of hours doc rang back and told me to go to the hospital where a lovely man called Phil was waiting for me. He lanced the infected part, which did smart somewhat, then dressed it and sent me away with penicillin. I can't believe how much better it feels already!!

Just feeding Bea, and then I'm going to get some much-needed sleep.

Oh, MIL took me in the end, dh stayed behind to sleep look after Beatrice. hmm smile

OP’s posts: |
rubyrubyruby Mon 02-Jan-12 08:28:29

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

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