Treatment of Thumb Tendonitis
Your thumbs may be one of the most under-appreciated parts of your body, yet they are necessary for so many aspects of life. Your thumbs allow you to grip things throughout the day without even realizing your dependence on them – the ability to grip your coffee mug, toothbrush, hairbrush, steering wheel, pen and pencil, eating utensils, opening doors, and many more.
The thumbs rely on tendons, which are the bands of tissue that connect muscles to bone for movement. The sheath around the tendons in the joints is called the synovium. This specialized connective tissue lines the inner surface of capsules of synovial joints and tendon sheath, producing fluid that helps lubricate the joints and supply nutrients to the cartilage. When inflammation affects the synovium, it is called tenosynovitis. De Quervain’s Tenosynovitis is an inflammation of the thumb that causes hand pain and functional issues.
De Quervain’s Tenosynovitis is a fancy name for “thumb tendonitis.” Thumb tendonitis is a painful inflammation of the tendons in the wrist and lower thumb. There is a narrow tunnel at the base of the thumb where tendons pass through to connect the joint of the thumb to the wrist. If the tendons are swollen and rub against the narrow tunnel, it causes pain at the base of the thumb and into the lower arm.
Thumb tendonitis can affect anyone, but it affects women more than men. Women are eight to ten times more likely to be affected by thumb tendonitis. This painful condition often occurs just after pregnancy. Repetitive motion, such as lifting an infant, can bring it on. This condition also affects those within the age range of 30-50 most often.
Causes of thumb tendonitis may include:
- Repetitive and overuse of motion in the thumb or wrist
- Gaming devices
- Hobbies like painting, gardening, or racket sports
- Repetitive workplace tasks such as typing
- A direct blow to the thumb
- Inflammatory conditions such as rheumatoid arthritis
At Medici Spine & Pain, we can treat those who suffer from thumb pain that is not healing with rest. If you have any of the following symptoms, please contact us:
- Pain or tenderness in your thumb or interior side of the wrist
- Increased pain when gripping or moving the thumb
- Pain extending from the thumb up the wrist and forearm
- A popping or snapping feeling when moving the thumb
Inflammation is the leading cause of thumb tendonitis. Our pain physicians at Medici Spine & Pain can create an effective treatment plan to offer relief to your pain and improve your gripping function. Steroid injections, immobilization, and other treatments can help improve your condition. We have locations in the Greater Atlanta area that offer pain management and rehabilitation for a wide variety of health conditions. Contact us today to schedule an appointment.
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