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the terminal part of the upper limb of a human or a nonhuman primate.
ape hand one with the thumb permanently extended.
cleft hand a malformation in which the division between the fingers extends into the metacarpus; also, a hand with the middle digits absent.
claw hand see clawhand.
drop hand wristdrop.
lobster-claw hand cleft hand.
obstetrician's hand the contraction of the hand in tetany; the hand is flexed at the wrist, the fingers are flexed at the metacarpophalangeal joints but extended at the interphalangeal joints, and the thumb is strongly flexed into the palm.
writing hand in Parkinson's disease, assumption of the position by which a pen is commonly held.


Alfred, U.S. pediatrician, 1868-1949. See: Hand-Schüller-Christian disease.


(hand), [TA]
The portion of the upper limb distal to the radiocarpal joint, comprising the wrist, palm, and fingers.
Synonym(s): manus [TA], main


(hand) the distal part of the upper limb, consisting of the carpus, metacarpus, and fingers.
ape hand  one with the thumb permanently extended.
claw hand  see clawhand.
cleft hand  a malformation in which the division between the fingers extends into the metacarpus; often with just two large digits, one on either side of the cleft.
Cleft hand.
club hand  see clubhand.
drop hand  wristdrop.
lobster-claw hand  cleft h.
mitten hand  a hand in which several fingers are fused together and have a common nail.
writing hand  in paralysis agitans, assumption of the position by which a pen is commonly held.


a. The terminal part of the human arm located below the forearm, used for grasping and holding and consisting of the wrist, palm, four fingers, and an opposable thumb.
b. A homologous or similar part in other animals, as the terminal part of the forelimb in certain vertebrates.

hand′er n.
hand′less adj.


Etymology: AS, hand
the part of the upper limb distal to the forearm. It is the most flexible part of the skeleton and has a total of 29 bones, 8 forming the carpus, 5 forming the metacarpus, 14 forming the phalangeal section, and 2 sesamoid bones. Also called manus.
enlarge picture
Bones of the hand


The terminal part of the upper extremity, containing carpal and metacarpal bones and phalanges.


See Alien hand, Bayonet hand, Clawhand, Machinist's hand, Main-en-trident, Rosebud hand, Spade hand, Windmill hand.


(hand) [TA]
The portion of the upper limb distal to the radiocarpal joint, comprising the wrist, palm, and fingers.
Synonym(s): manus [TA] .


Enlarge picture
The body part attached to the forearm at the wrist. It includes the wrist (carpus) with its eight bones, the metacarpus or body of the hand (ossa metacarpalia) having five bones, and the fingers (phalanges) with their 14 bones. In some occupations and recreational endeavors, workers use their hands as hammers, which may damage the ulnar nerve and artery, with consequent signs of ischemia and neuropathy. Synonym: manus See: illustration

anarchic hand

Alien limb phenomenon.

ape hand

A deformity of the hand in which the thumb is permanently extended, usually caused by a median nerve injury. Paralysis and atrophy of the thenar muscles result.

benediction hand

Condition of the hand in which there is flexion of some of the fingers, especially of the terminal phalanges. The hand at the wrist may be extended. The condition may be caused by paralysis of the ulnar and median nerves.

cleft hand

A bipartite hand resulting from failure of a digit and its corresponding metacarpal to develop.
Synonym: lobster-claw hand; split hand

diabetic hand

Stiffness and fibrotic contractures of the metacarpophalangeal (MCP) and proximal interphalangeal (PIP) joints in patients with advanced diabetes mellitus.

dominant hand

In American Sign Language, the hand that moves during the formation of a sign.
Synonym: preferred hand

drop hand

Wrist drop.

functional position of hand

See: position

lobster-claw hand

Cleft hand.

obstetrician's hand

The position of the hand in tetany with extension at the metacarpophalangeal and the interphalangeal joints, and adduction of the thumb. It is named for the position of the obstetrician's hand during vaginal examination.

opera-glass hand

A deformity of the hand caused by chronic arthritis in which the phalanges appear to be telescoped into one another like an opera glass.

preferred hand

Dominant hand.

split hand

Cleft hand.

writing hand

A deformity of the hand in which the tips of the thumb and first finger are touching and the other fingers are flexed as if holding a writing instrument. This is seen in Parkinson's disease.
Figure 1: The nervous system.


a complex musculoskeletal structure, allowing the complexity of movements required. The carpal bonesat the wrist articulate with the five metacarpals, and each of these in turn with the first of the three phalanges of each digit. There are many small muscles attached between the various bones, which contribute to finger and thumb movements together with the long tendons of the forearm muscles which span the wrist in their tendon sheaths. hand injury is most common in sports such as basketball, rugby, cricket, volleyball, handball, etc. Injuries include ligament sprains, fractures and dislocations. Figure 1.


1. unit of measurement of height in a horse; hands high, abbreviated hh. 1 hand = 4 inches = 10.16 cm.
2. the terminal part of an upper extremity of a primate.

hand gallop
a restrained gallop at less than top speed.
hand milking

Patient discussion about hand

Q. why my hands are getting purple and freezing?

A. thank you, but these answers are not correct answers for my question

Q. Is it possible to have fibromyalgia in your feet and hands? Can you explain? I am very eager to know whether anybody is here with the symptoms of mine. My thumb hurts so much that it's difficult for me to write, and both my feet hurt when I put any weight on them. My hands and feet used to be the only parts of my body that didn't hurt. Is it possible to have fibromyalgia in your feet and hands? Can you explain?

A. Calcium/magnesium
cod liver oil
flax seed oil
raw apple cider vinegar
avoid highly process foods, especially white sugar and white flour

Q. Itches on hands when i go out in sun When go out and when sun rays fall on my hand at the end of the day it starts itching bady and it becoms sowlen. Can any one tell reason for this and a solution.

A. i don't use any lotion or creams. It happens only on my hands and only when sun rays fall on my hands. And small rashes also comes.

More discussions about hand
References in periodicals archive ?
I just want to get my hands around his neck and squeeze the life out of him," As a young offender, there's not much the law can do but pick him up and take him home.
At her next job, in Betty Herman's dress shop, nearby, she learned "a lot about how to treat people," as well as the mantra she still lives by: "There should not be anything you can't get your hands around and do"--a message reinforced, she says, when she beat breast cancer at age 37.
0 in the forefront and an economic landscape in flux," explains Evans, "marketing is all about how to get your hands around the vital connections and networking-conversations that lead to conversion and opportunities fueled by social transparency.
Mr Jones said: "He had his hands around her throat and there's no doubt he was trying to kill her by strangling her.
In the poster which asks Cowell to rethink if he is 'in charge' of the show, Judges Rubi and Rowland are seen punching the air and grinning while Lovato is seen clasping her hands around the 53-year old music mogul's neck, who is looking ultra smooth, tanned and slightly wider, the Mirror reported.
The highlight of the afternoon was when all 150 visitors, with the help of 177 metres of hand-made bunting, held hands around the house and "embraced the future of Insole Court".
He said: "I had my hands around the guy's neck and I told him, 'I'm not letting go'.
Then he punched her and put his hands around her throat.
It took seven of our pupils to link hands around this marvellous oak which measured 514cm around.
Stopped But another witness, who saw the second half on the incident, said: "Kay Burley had her hands around the photographer's neck.