Evaluation of written and video education tools after mallet finger injury

J Hand Ther. 2019 Oct-Dec;32(4):452-456. doi: 10.1016/j.jht.2018.03.005. Epub 2018 Jul 13.


Study design: Prospective cohort.

Introduction: Successful nonoperative treatment of mallet finger injuries requires compliance to prolonged immobilization and understandable educational materials.

Purpose of the study: This study evaluated the use of written and online video education tools after mallet finger injury.

Methods: After ethics board approval and informed consent, adults with an acute mallet finger injury referred to hand therapy were included. Standard nonoperative treatment was instituted with orthotic immobilization and verbal instructions, in addition to an education pamphlet and an online video link. A questionnaire regarding the educational materials was administered at the follow-up appointment.

Results: There were 61 patients (mean age, 42 ± 14 years). The middle (n = 21) and ring (n = 22) fingers were most commonly injured. All patients were fluent in English. Written instructions (n = 57) were used by more patients than the videos (n = 30). Comparing patients who viewed the video with those who did not, there were no differences (P > .05) in demographics (sex, age, education, work status, and second language). Both written and video instructions were reported as helpful; mean helpful score for the video was significantly (P = .03) higher than written instructions. Most patients preferred having written and video instructions, and both were easy to understand and convenient.

Discussion: In our study of patients with acute mallet finger injuries, written and video instructions were utilized and both were reported as helpful.

Conclusions: This study provides evidence of the usefulness of online videos as an educational aid and the opportunity for future investigations to improve patient access to education materials.

Keywords: Education; Finger injuries; Mallet finger; Prospective cohort; Trauma.

Publication types

  • Video-Audio Media

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Cohort Studies
  • Female
  • Finger Injuries / rehabilitation*
  • Hand Deformities, Acquired / rehabilitation*
  • Humans
  • Immobilization
  • Internet*
  • Male
  • Orthotic Devices
  • Pamphlets*
  • Patient Education as Topic / methods*
  • Patient Preference