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De Quervain’s tenosynovitis is a common condition that causes pain and swelling of the tendons or the tendon sheath that covers the tendons running through some sort of a tunnel on the thumb side of one’s wrist. Swelling causes the tendons to become unable to glide smoothly and move the thumb. To most people, this can be quite painful.
Wondering what may cause this condition? The answer is quite simple actually – it appears after performing various activities that imply frequent extension of the wrist or thumb and motions from side to side. New mothers are the most predisposed to this condition, due to the fact that they have to perform movements of the hand whenever they have to lift their babies. Also, De Quervain’s tenosynovitis can appear during pregnancy and the most common causes in this situation are fluid retention and hormonal changes that appear in the body.
Of course, the main advantage of undergoing De Quervain’s tendon release procedure is that it will help you regain movement and make pain disappear. You know how painful this condition can be. It is best to have the right solution for it before it aggravates more and causes you even more pain.
Everyone suffering from De Quervain’s tenosynovitis is advised to go to the closest doctor as soon as possible. one recommended medical centre is Centre for Surgery, because here doctors are highly trained and have vast experience in the field, so they know exactly what to do to provide each patient with the right treatment plan.
Even if the pain you are feeling is not that intense, it is recommended you get your wrists examined in order to avoid any complications later on. In case self-care measures, such as stopping performing activities that usually trigger the pain aren’t helping you much, it’s a clear sign you need to go to a doctor.
Firstly, you will need to make an appointment and Centre for Surgery seems to be just the right place to seek professional help. Make sure that you bring with you all your medical history in order for the doctor to be aware of any other health issues you may have experienced or diagnosed with in the past. It is recommended you make a list of any type of supplements or medications you take at the moment, because this too is crucial information a doctor needs to know about before prescribing the right treatment.
Think about your hobbies and daily activities that may strain your wrist or hand and make sure you communicate them to your doctor too. Some examples of such activities are knitting, playing a specific instrument, gardening and repetitive workplace activities, so if you perform any of these, ensure you mention them.
The treatment involves several essential steps, depending on the level of pain the patient experiences and on how severe the form of the condition is. The first and most commonly recommended treatment is complete rest. The patient is advised to avoid activities that may make the condition worse. Also, in many cases the doctor prescribes non-steroidal and anti-inflammatory drugs in order to stop the pain and swelling.
In case neither rest, nor medicine works, the doctor resorts to steroid injections. These ones are injected into the affected area and work solely there. There may be a few days until the steroid starts to become effective, but once this happens, it can last for nearly two months or more.
The final solution in case none of the above mentioned treatment plans fail to work is surgery. It’s a day case procedure, which means that the patient won’t have to spend the night in the hospital. The doctor performs a small incision in order to cut the tendon sheath and free the specific tendons affected by this condition. Local or regional anaesthesia is required.
Post-surgery, you will be able to go home the very same day. Expect your hand to be covered in bandage. Also, it is essential that following the three days post-surgery you keep your hand elevated somewhere above the heart either on pillows or in a sling. This will prevent stiffness and swelling of your fingers. Don’t forget to ask the doctor about which painkillers you are allowed to take during the recovery period.
It is advisable to avoid driving during the recovery. You will know you are ready when you will feel able to comfortably and safely perform emergency stops.
Surgery procedure comes with a series of risks, but they may or may not appear depending on the patient. Thus, some side effects and risks of performing De Quervain’s release via surgery are bleeding, scarring, infection, stiffness, and other extremely rare risks, such as nerve damage, complex regional pain syndrome and recurrence. However, know that these complications occur if the doctor you selected is an unprofessional and unreliable one.
What types of doctors are entitled to perform De Quervain’s release?
There are several types of doctors that are entitled to perform De Quervain’s release and those are orthopaedists, hand therapists, rheumatologists and occupational therapists.
How exactly is De Quervain’s diagnosed?
The hand surgeon you resorted to performs thorough clinical examination, which may include performing the well-known Finkelstein’s test. This implies that the thumb is gripped in the palm, while the wrist of the patient is bent towards his or her little finger.
What are the common symptoms of De Quervain’s?
Pain is the most common symptom that tells you may be suffering from De Quervain’s tenosynovitis. Also, you can experience swelling around the site of the affected tendon, and you can find gripping objects, clicking or even snapping of the tendons extremely difficult activities to perform.
Is surgery the best treatment plan to opt for?
Surgery can be a good treatment plan for De Quervain’s tenosynovitis, but as it was mentioned earlier, it’s not the only one. It is usually recommended in case the condition causes severe pain and leaves the patient unable to freely and properly use the wrist. Otherwise, caring for this condition is much the same as what preventing it implies. A professional doctor’s examination will determine exactly which treatment plan is best for you.