Wrist Tendonitis Treatment
Awarding-Winning Orthopedic Services in Orange County
Do I have Wrist Tendonits?
Wrist Tendonitis, also called tenosynovitis, occurs when the tendons around
the wrist become irritated, inflamed or swollen and causes the synovium
around the tendon in the hand or wrist to swell, changing the shape of
the tendon sheath compartment and making it difficult for the tendons
to move properly. Tendonitis can cause pain and tenderness along the hand
or wrist that is particularly noticeable when grasping or gripping, forming
a fist, or turning the wrist. Pain in the thumb-side of the wrist is the
primary symptom of De Quervain's tendonitis, one of the most common
types of wrist tendonitis.
It is important not to confuse wrist tendonitis with
carpal tunnel. One may aggravate the other, but they are different conditions. Carpal
tunnel is caused by compression of the nerve, whereas tendonitis is an
inflammation of the tendon.
Symptoms of Wrist Tendonits
The most common cause of wrist tendonitis is simple, repetitive motions
that can put stress on the tendon over time. Common activities such as
playing sports, using a computer, writing or physical labor can all cause
The most common symptom described by patients with wrist tendonitis is
wrist pain. Other symptoms include:
- Hand or wrist pain
- Swelling around the wrist joint
- Stiffness of the wrist
- Warmth and redness of the tendons around the wrist
- Grinding sensations with movement of the tendons
- Decreased range of motion in your hand
- Weakness in hand when gripping, pinching, throwing, typing, using a computer
mouse, or using a computer game controller
Diagnosing Wrist Tendonitis
When diagnosing wrist tendonitis, your physician may perform tests to stretch
the specific tendons of concern to locate the precise source of inflammation
to properly treat the root cause. For example, patients with De Quervain’s
Tenosynovitis have painful tendons on the thumb side of the wrist. In
De Quervain’s Tenosynovitis, the tunnel where the tendons run can
narrow, or the tendons can take up extra space in the tunnel. In this
condition, hand and thumb motion can cause pain, especially with forceful
grasping or twisting.
Nonsurgical Wrist Tendonitis Treatment
Our goal at HOI is to take a conservative, nonsurgical approach whenever
possible. Your wrist surgeon will develop a customized treatment plan
and will attempt to exhaust all treatment options before recommending
surgery. Nonsurgical treatments that can relieve wrist pain include:
Immobilization: A splint that stops you from moving your thumb and wrist
Anti-Inflammatory Medications: Nonsteroidal (NSAIDs) can help to decrease inflammation and swelling.
Cortisone Injection: A cortisone-type of steroid injection into the tendon compartment (Response
can vary. While cortisone injections are safe but can weaken tendons over
time if too many injections are given.)
Hand and Wrist Physical Therapy: Therapists can prescribe stretches and exercises to strengthen the hand
and wrist. Electrical stimulation and ultrasound may also be used to alleviate
pressure to the tendons and ligament that surround the joint.
Surgical Wrist Tendontis Treatment
If these non-surgical treatments have not provided complete relief, surgery
to open the tunnel and make more room for the tendons is recommended as
a definitive treatment. It is a short procedure that usually can be done
in an ambulatory surgery center without the need for general anesthesia.
Find a Wrist Doctor
Our Board-Certified, fellowship-trained wrist surgeons rank among the nation’s
top physicians in their field. With a multi-disciplinary approach and
focus on unique collaboration, you can benefit from a team of orthopedic
surgeons, sports medicine doctors, pain management and physical rehabilitation
physicians, physical therapists, and orthopedic nurses who are all committed
to your health. Schedule a consult with a wrist doctor today!
Find a hand surgeon that treats wrist tendonitis.
Call us at
(855) 999-4641 to make an appointment.
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