DeQuervain’s Syndrome (or DeQuervain’s Stenosing Tenosynovitis) is a common wrist condition with symptoms that include pain and irritation along the thumb or radial aspects of the wrist. In some cases, swelling will also occur along the thumb. Pain is typically associated with repetitive pinching or grasping especially when coupled with movements of ulnar deviation such as with hammering.
DeQuervain’s occurs where the common extensor tendons of the thumb (Abductor Pollicis Longus and Extensor Pollicis Brevis) pass through the wrist on their way up the arm. At this juncture, the tendon sheaths commonly become inflamed, making motion difficult and painful.
Women and those with arthritis appear to be more at risk for DeQuervain’s Syndrome. Expectant and new mothers have been noted to commonly experience this condition during and after pregnancy.
To prevent further inflammation, your physician may recommend anti-inflammatory medications or a cortisone injection to alleviate your symptoms. Primary treatment usually involves wrist and thumb splinting to immobilize the injury and allow for tendon healing.
Specific hand therapy exercises and treatments will usually greatly reduce or alleviate the pain and return your hand to its maximum function.
In severe cases where pain and discomfort persist following conservative treatments like therapy, surgery may be recommended by your physician to correct the condition. Therapy is usually prescribed after the surgery to improve range of motion, strength, and function.
Women and those with arthritis appear to be more at risk for DeQuervain’s Syndrome. New and expectant months have been noted to commonly experience this condition during and after pregnancy.
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