Unknown fingertip injury?

October 2, 2016 at 09:34 PM · Hi all,

I have had an injury on my left hand index finger for the past six months and I am here in hopes that someone can help me identify the problem. This injury is only on the fingertip and the pain is relatively minimal. It feels like there is a tiny lump inside my finger that causes me to feel a slight pinch whenever I play. During the past six months, I spent the first two playing through the pain, the second two by flattening my first finger completely (so I could avoid the painful area), and the last two by not playing at all. However, after taking a two month break, I tried playing again a few days ago but the pain was still there. I have seen three doctors (general, hand specialist, sports medicine/music) and gotten both an x-ray and ultrasound on my hand, but all three stated that there seems to be nothing wrong.

When looking at my fingertip, one can easily see that there is a white circle that seems to be under my skin that I can only assume is a callus. I feel the pain when I play over the middle of this circle. This is only on my index finger.


I should also note that I am not a beginner violinist. I am studying violin as an undergrad and have played for over 13 years. However, I did get this injury around the same time I switched over to a new violin. It did have a higher tension initially, but I have since changed the setup (bridge height and lower string tension). I know for a fact that this injury is not tendonitis or nerve damage, which I am very thankful for.

If anyone has any ideas on what type of injury this is or any advice that could speed up recovery, I would be very grateful. I am currently planning on waiting for a few more months before playing again, but not knowing what I am actually waiting for has put a lot of mental stress on me recently.

Replies (4)

October 2, 2016 at 11:21 PM · Christian Tetzlaff is intermittently afflicted with an ailment called "neurodermatitis," that causes accute pain in his left hand fingertips. I know nothing about it except what little I've read, but you might benefit from looking that up.

October 3, 2016 at 02:11 AM · Does it feel like the inside of your finger is pricked by a pin when you touch the tip? Every so often if I drop a finger too hard on the string, I get this temporary fingertip pain and usually it goes away in three days. Once it lasted about two months and gradually healed itself, but it was a frustrating time for sure. In my case the symtom is a lot less noticeable if my hand was warm, so it was manageable for me.

October 3, 2016 at 03:45 AM · Check out this site:


There is no massage for fingertip pain, but I believe that you will get an answer if you contact Jan directly.

There are times when, despite of lack of injury, or brain produced pain. It could very well be that you need to work on trigger points elsewhere to release a muscle responsible for this pain.

Also, make sure that there is nothing weird regarding the neck and fingerboard dimensions and shape; string clearance too. Sometimes we adapt to a very non-ergonomic instrument and the pain is result. A narrow neck / fingerboard can force you to place fingers in a wrong way. It is only a step away from injury.

October 3, 2016 at 01:46 PM · I know it sounds silly, but padding the fingertip with a small band-aid, (going over the fingertip, not round it) can provide temporary relief I did this after hammering my finger rather than the nail...

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