6 doctors weighed in:

Infection of the hand my husben is in the ER room now he has been having pain in arm has not had it checked this morning his hand was red /blue and looked like someone had injected fluid in his arm it was all puffy his hole hand pluse he is a full time al

6 doctors weighed in
Dr. Monica Wood
Surgery - Hand Surgery
3 doctors agree

In brief: It

It is difficult to know if this is an infection, in which case it may be very serious, or a vascular problem. I hope he has been seen by now and they are taking care of it.
I assume symptoms came on quickly and therefore need to be addressed quickly to prevent/minimize tissue loss or damage. As for its relation to alcohol--there are a lot of reasons for infections and vascular problems, some related to alcohol and others not. Most alcoholics are also malnourished and can therefore have weakend immune systems. Depending on the caloric intake (alcohol has 7kcal/g--somewhere between carbohydrates and fat), it can also lead to problems with weight and fats. The typical results of chronic alcoholism include loss of clotting factors made in the liver, build up of toxins, such as ammonia and bilirubin, processed by the liver, poor brain function (some are reversible and others are not), bleeding ulcers, and skin changes. Indirectly, compromised skin can be an entry site for bacteria and malnutrition can weaken the immune system, making infection more likely. Also, poor clotting factors can increase bleeding. If this happens to be a large hematoma (collection of blood), it could be related, but that is much less likely. If he has a major clot in the vessels making his hand swell and turn colors, that is often related to diabetes or other vascular diseases which are only indirectly related to alcohol. Regardless of the cause, your husband needs to get immediate care of his hand and long-term care of his alcoholism. You, too, should seek support with a group such as al-anon. You need to learn how best to help him get the care he needs...And sometimes that means making painful decisions not to help him in other ways.

In brief: It

It is difficult to know if this is an infection, in which case it may be very serious, or a vascular problem. I hope he has been seen by now and they are taking care of it.
I assume symptoms came on quickly and therefore need to be addressed quickly to prevent/minimize tissue loss or damage. As for its relation to alcohol--there are a lot of reasons for infections and vascular problems, some related to alcohol and others not. Most alcoholics are also malnourished and can therefore have weakend immune systems. Depending on the caloric intake (alcohol has 7kcal/g--somewhere between carbohydrates and fat), it can also lead to problems with weight and fats. The typical results of chronic alcoholism include loss of clotting factors made in the liver, build up of toxins, such as ammonia and bilirubin, processed by the liver, poor brain function (some are reversible and others are not), bleeding ulcers, and skin changes. Indirectly, compromised skin can be an entry site for bacteria and malnutrition can weaken the immune system, making infection more likely. Also, poor clotting factors can increase bleeding. If this happens to be a large hematoma (collection of blood), it could be related, but that is much less likely. If he has a major clot in the vessels making his hand swell and turn colors, that is often related to diabetes or other vascular diseases which are only indirectly related to alcohol. Regardless of the cause, your husband needs to get immediate care of his hand and long-term care of his alcoholism. You, too, should seek support with a group such as al-anon. You need to learn how best to help him get the care he needs...And sometimes that means making painful decisions not to help him in other ways.
Dr. Monica Wood
Dr. Monica Wood
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Dr. David Ring
Surgery - Hand Surgery
1 doctor agrees

In brief: Without

Without seeing him, my guess is that he got drunk and slept on his arm too long.
He could have a compartment syndrome (too much swelling in the muscle). I'm glad he is in the emergency room because this is limb and even life threatening.

In brief: Without

Without seeing him, my guess is that he got drunk and slept on his arm too long.
He could have a compartment syndrome (too much swelling in the muscle). I'm glad he is in the emergency room because this is limb and even life threatening.
Dr. David Ring
Dr. David Ring
Thank
Dr. Bryan McIntosh
Surgery - Plastics
1 doctor agrees

In brief: It

It is difficult to say exactly what is going on.
Alcohol may be a contributing factor in this instance, but it is unlikely to be causing the problem. From your description, it is a good thing that he is now in the emergency room.

In brief: It

It is difficult to say exactly what is going on.
Alcohol may be a contributing factor in this instance, but it is unlikely to be causing the problem. From your description, it is a good thing that he is now in the emergency room.
Dr. Bryan McIntosh
Dr. Bryan McIntosh
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Dr. Jeffrey Wint
Surgery - Hand Surgery

In brief: Alcohol

Alcohol abuse may not directly caused this problem but is linked to health problems that can make the infection seem worse of get worse quickly.
A swollen red, hand/forearm may need IV anticiotic, spliinting and maybe surgical release.

In brief: Alcohol

Alcohol abuse may not directly caused this problem but is linked to health problems that can make the infection seem worse of get worse quickly.
A swollen red, hand/forearm may need IV anticiotic, spliinting and maybe surgical release.
Dr. Jeffrey Wint
Dr. Jeffrey Wint
Thank
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