[Skip to Content]
Sign In
Individual Sign In
Create an Account
Institutional Sign In
OpenAthens Shibboleth
[Skip to Content Landing]
November 1972

The Incidence of the Hypothenar Hammer Syndrome

Author Affiliations

Sydney, Australia
From the Department of Surgery, and School of Preventive and Social Medicine, University of Sydney, Sydney, Australia.

Arch Surg. 1972;105(5):684-685. doi:10.1001/archsurg.1972.04180110009004

Occlusion of the superficial palmar branch of the ulnar artery amongst workers in mechanical workshops is related to the use of the hand as a hammer. Of 79 habitual hammerers, 11 (14%) showed evidence of ulnar artery occlusion in one or both hands. Those suffering from the hypothenar hammer syndrome were found to be older and to have had longer employment in hammering jobs, than those who used their hands as hammers but had intact ulnar arteries. Symptoms of vascular insufficiency were universal among those with blocked ulnar arteries. It should be possible to prevent the lesion from occurring by insistence on good workshop practice.

Barker NW, Hines EA Jr:  Arterial occlusion in the hands and fingers associated with repeated occupational trauma . Mayo Clin Proc 19:345-349, 1944.
Kleinert HE, Volianitis GJ:  Thrombosis of the palmar arterial arch and its tributaries: Etiology and new concepts in treatment . J Trauma 5:447-457, 1965.Article
Paaby H, Stadil F:  Thrombosis of the ulnar artery . Acta Orthop Scand 39:336-345, 1968.Article
Conn JJ Jr, Bergan JJ, Bell JL:  Hypothenar hammer syndrome: Posttraumatic digital ischemia . Surgery 68:1122-1128, 1970.
Bergan JJ, Conn JJ Jr, Trippel OH:  Severe ischemia of the hand . Ann Surg 173:301-307, 1971.Article
 Hammering with the hands, annotation . Lancet 536, 1971.
Little JM, Grant AF:  Hypothenar hammer syndrome . Med J Aust i:49-53, 1972.
McCormack LJ, Cauldwell EW, Anson BJ:  Brachial and antebrachial arterial patterns: A study of 750 extremities . Surg Gynecol Obstet 96:43-54, 1953.
Allen EV:  Thromboangiitis obliterans: Methods of diagnosis of chronic occlusive arterial lesions distal to the wrist with illustrative cases . Am J Med Sci 178:237-244, 1929.Article