Teeth syndrome: diagnosis, complications and management

  • Mohamed Ali Sbai
  • Sofien Benzarti
  • Monia Boussen
  • Riadh Maalla
Keywords: Human bite, cellulitis, arthritis, finger, Hand surgery


Teeth syndrome or fight bite is a specific entity in hand surgery that is little known. It includes infectious complications of the hand following a fist against the teeth. Neglected or misdiagnosed this injury  frequently leads to serious complications that could compromise the function of the hand. A retrospective study was performed on 20 patients treated for teeth syndrome at our department, during a period of 12  years (January 2003 to April 2015). All young adults with a mean age of 28 years and a significant male  predominance. The dominant side was involved in 15 patients. Lesions were divided into 4 cases of simple dorsal wounds facing the MP joint, 8 cases of dorsal hand cellulitis, and 8 cases of arthritis and osteoarthritis of the  metacarpophalangeal (MP) joint of the long fingers. The index was the most affected finger. Treatment  consisted in debridement of necrotic tissues, stabilization with external fixation for arthritis, skin  reconstruction was performed secondarily. Result was assessed as good in 60% of cases. Clenched fist  injuries to the mouth (teeth syndrome or fight bite) are known as being the worst human bites. Usually  treated as minor injuries, without realizing a breach of the joint capsule, a lesion of the extensor tendon, or a contamination by oral flora. Any patient with a wound near the joint of the hand and was involved in a fight, need an appropriate evaluation and a specialized treatment to avoid serious complications.

Key words: Human bite, cellulitis, arthritis, finger, Hand surgery


Journal Identifiers

eISSN: 1937-8688