Hand Injuries from Cutting Avocados on the Rise

British doctors acknowledge common hand injuries related to cutting an avocado—referred to as “avocado hand”—as a legitimate medical concern.

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A recent feature in British publication London Times reported that the incidence of injuries sustained from cutting an avocado—or “avocado hand”—are on the rise. The British Association of Plastic, Reconstructive, and Aesthetic Surgeons (BAPRAS) is asking for a safety label to be placed on avocados to curb injuries. “People do not anticipate that the avocados they buy can be very ripe and there is minimal understanding of how to handle them,” BAPRAS’ secretary Simon Eccles said. “We don’t want to put people off the fruit but I think warning labels are an effective way of dealing with this. It needs to be recognizable. Perhaps we could have a cartoon picture of an avocado with a knife, and a big red cross going through it?” Eccles says that he treats approximately four cases of “avocado hand” every week and in severe instances, patients have permanently lost use of the injured hand.