Subdermal magnet implant in finger

Case contributed by Craig Hacking
Diagnosis certain



Patient Data

Age: 30 years
Gender: Male

The fifth carpometacarpal articulation is disrupted, with evidence of an impacted, intra-articular fracture of the fifth metacarpal base. Possible fracture of the fourth metacarpal base. CT recommended.

Subdermal small metallic implant projected in the palmar soft tissues of the right middle finger distally.

Case Discussion

The patient admitted that several years ago he had a small subdermal metallic implant inserted into middle finger to allow magnetization of metal objects.

Insertion of a small magnet (neodym) is a form of body modification and is performed for several reasons according to Wikipedia:

  1. to pick up small metal objects using magnetism
  2. allow sensory perception of magnetism, a 'sixth sense'
  3. augment ultrasonic or infra-red signals into a touch sensation ('even though scientifically magnets have no relation to either infra-red radiation or ultrasonic sound waves and cannot possibly react to either phenomenon' 1)

​These implants are often inserted in less than ideal sterile conditions, therefore one should assess for signs of infection.

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