Conditions of the Hand and Wrist

February 27, 2014

Typing, eating, handwriting, and even opening packages or jars require full, preferably pain-free, use of the hands and wrists. But when experiencing a disabling condition like arthritis or tendinitis, these everyday tasks can become a difficult challenge.

Here are some of the common conditions that can affect the wrist and hand:


  • Basal joint arthritis – Probably the most common type of arthritis seen in the hands. The carpal-metacarpal (CMC) or basal joint at the base of the thumb is the most mobile joint of the thumb and can wear out due to repetitive use.

  • Finger arthritis – More common in patients with rheumatoid arthritis, who have disorders where their joints are destroyed.

  • Wrist arthritis – Typically developed after trauma. When the wrist’s carpal bones and ligaments are injured, the bones’ movements become abnormal and can wear away at the cartilage in the wrist joint.


Trigger Finger  

Trigger finger, or tenosynovitis, is an inflammation of tissue in the finger or thumb. Often the cause of trigger finger is either from repetitive use or unknown causes. The first sign of trigger finger is often pain and swelling where the affected finger or thumb meets the palm of the hand. As inflammation in the tendon gets worse, the finger might start to catch when being straightened.


Ganglion cyst

A ganglion cyst is a firm, fluid-filled lump on the front or back of the wrist or at the base of a finger. These cysts, which grow from normal wrist and finger tissue, can appear suddenly and grow to the size of a peach pit. A ganglion cyst can be painful, especially when it first appears.


Dupuytren’s contracture

Dupuytren’s contracture is a hand condition that occurs when the tough, fibrous tissue called fascia in the palm thickens and pulls in. Small, hard knots called nodules may also form under the skin near the base of the fingers. When this happens, fingers—especially the ring finger and the little finger—bend toward the palm, making it difficult to use the hand.


De Quervain’s tenosynovitis

De Quervain’s tenosynovitis is a condition where the tissue on the thumb side of the wrist becomes inflamed and painful. This condition occurs when the tendons and the synovium, a slippery membrane that allows the tendons to move easily, become irritated from repetitive motions or injury.


Treatments vary by condition, so please call, 440.329.2800 for a consultation. Generally in conditions of the hand and wrist, non-invasive treatments include pain relievers, injections, bracing, splinting and physical therapy. However, if these methods prove unsuccessful, surgery may be the best alternative. Our surgeons at The Center for Orthopedics are specially trained in surgical procedures for the hand and upper extremities, including finger and wrist joint replacement.

We also have a fellowship trained hand surgeon, Dr. John Krebs, on staff to treat even the most complex conditions. In addition to his orthopedic surgery training, Dr. Krebs completed a Cleveland Combined Hand Fellowship at the University Hospitals of Cleveland and the Cleveland Clinic Foundation. He is board-certified in orthopedic surgery, and certified with added qualifications (CAQ) in hand surgery by the American Board of Orthopaedic Surgery.

Entry Filed under: Arthritis,Carpal Tunnel,Strains and Sprains. Posted in  Arthritis ,Carpal Tunnel ,Strains and Sprains .

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