If not treated, the condition tends to spread through the thumb and forearm.
The pain is mostly provoked by pinching, grasping, or similar movements of the wrist.
Despite the fact that the underlying cause of De Quervain's tenosynovitis is still unknown, it has been noticed that chronic overuse of the wrist is associated with it. At a certain moment, this overuse begins to irritate the sheath that overlays tendons in your wrist.
In normal conditions, these tendons glide through a tunnel that leads them to the base of the thumb. When it gets heavily irritated , this sheath begins to thicken and swell, which shrinks the space which is predetermined for tendon movement. Afterwards, the movement gets restricted and symptoms start to emerge.
Other causes include: scar tissue, other types of inflammation, arthritis, injury, pregnancy, hormonal changes etc.
4 Making a Diagnosis
In order to diagnose de Quervain's tenosynovitis, your doctor will examine your hand.
In case that ordinary measures, such as rest and avoiding movements that trigger the pain, don’t help,talk to your doctor.
Your doctor may refer you to the specialist ( rheumatologist, orthopedic). Do not forget to mention other conditions that you have, medications that you take, previous injuries, your occupational activities etc.
Examination techniques include physical examination ( including Finkelstein test) and perhaps an X-ray.
So far, surgical procedure that involves longitudinal opening of the swollen tendon sheath, has proved to be the most beneficial. It eliminates the pressure on the tendons and causes relief in majority of patients.
6 Lifestyle and Coping
Lifestyle modifications are necessary in order to cope with De Quervain's tenosynovitis.
Follow the advice of your doctor.
Avoid movements that trigger pain and irritation.
Use immobilization techniques and rest your wrist.
Follow through with recommended exercises.
7 Risks and Complications
You are under increased risk of developing de Quervain's tenosynovitis if you are:
Aged between 30 and 50
Repeatedly moving your thumbs and wrist on your workplace
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