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The thumb series is comprised of a posteroanterior, oblique, and lateral projection. The posteroanterior projection is interchangeably performed anterioposter or posteroanterior depending on mobility. It examines in detail the first metacarpal and its articulations. Thumbs have a vital impact in our day to day lives, often injuries of the thumb can have life-changing consequences if they are serious enough 2.
See fractures of the thumb for more information.
Thumb x-rays are indicated for a variety of settings including:
- suspected metacarpal dislocation
- foreign body detection and localization
- investigation of joint pain or deformity
- mechanism-specific injuries such as skier's thumb
- demonstrates the first metacarpal in the natural anatomical position
- excellent view to inspect shafts of the metacarpal
- excellent view to evaluate any avulsions at the ulnar corner of the base of the proximal phalanx (see figure 4)
- external oblique projection of the thumb
- orthogonal view of the AP/PA view
- essential view to examine joint spaces