Trigger finger occurs when the tendon in the affected finger becomes inflamed.
What IS IT?
Stenosing tenosynovitis is commonly known as "trigger finger" or "trigger thumb." The tendons that bend the fingers glide easily with the help of pulleys. These pulleys hold the tendons close to the bone. This is similar to how a line is held on a fishing rod. Trigger finger occurs when the pulley becomes too thick, so the tendon cannot glide easily through it.
What causes it?
Trigger fingers are more common with certain medical conditions such as rheumatoid arthritis, gout and diabetes. Repeated and strong gripping may lead to the condition. In most cases, the cause of the trigger finger is not known.
Signs & symptoms
Trigger finger may start with discomfort felt at the base of the finger or thumb, where the finger joins the palm. This area is often sensitive to pressure. You might feel a lump there. Other symptoms may include:
- Catching feeling
- Limited finger movement
The goal of treatment in trigger finger is to eliminate the swelling and catching/locking, allowing full, painless movement of the finger or thumb.
Common treatments include, but are not limited to:
- Activity modification
- Anti-inflammatory medication
- Night splint
- Steroid injection
- Percutaneous trigger finger release (under ultrasound guidance)
If non-surgical treatments do not relieve the symptoms, surgery may
be recommended. The goal of surgery is to open the pulley at the base of
the finger so that the tendon can glide more freely. The clicking or
popping goes away first. Finger motion can return quickly, or there can
be some stiffness after surgery. Occasionally, hand therapy is required
after surgery to regain better use.
The Hand & Wrist Center at Andrews Sports Medicine provides the most-advanced, comprehensive treatment solutions for injuries and disorders of the hand and wrist. To schedule an appointment, call (205) 939-3699.Request an Appointment Online
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