Trigger Finger

At the North Florida Hand and Wrist, we understand the importance of hand health and its impact on your daily life. Led by expertly trained hand and wrist surgeons Dr. Richard D. Curtis and Dr. Jose Baez, our dedicated team strives to provide the highest level of patient care possible. Our state-of-the-art surgical facility caters to a variety of hand and wrist conditions, ensuring you receive the specialized treatment necessary to alleviate your discomfort and get back to your regular activities.

In this blog post, our primary focus is on Trigger Finger, also referred to as stenosing tenosynovitis – a common and often painful hand disorder. We aim to provide valuable information concerning the causes, symptoms, diagnosis, treatment options, and preventive measures related to Trigger Finger. With a thorough understanding of this condition, you can take a more active role in maintaining your hand health and effectively managing this disorder, should it arise.

Timely diagnosis and treatment are essential to ensuring optimal outcomes and the prevention of possible complications. As such, it is crucial to recognize the warning signs and symptoms associated with Trigger Finger and to consult with a hand and wrist specialist if these symptoms persist.

Unraveling Trigger Finger: Causes and Risk Factors

Trigger Finger is a condition characterized by the locking or catching of a finger when it’s bent or straightened. This disorder occurs when the tendon sheath in the affected finger becomes inflamed, making the tendon’s movement difficult. It’s essential to understand the factors contributing to the development of Trigger Finger:

  1. Repetitive Hand Movements: Frequent and repetitive hand activities, such as typing, gripping tools, or playing musical instruments, can cause strain on the tendon sheath and lead to inflammation.
  2. Medical Conditions: Certain health issues, including diabetes, rheumatoid arthritis, and gout, can increase the risk of developing Trigger Finger.
  3. Age and Gender: Trigger Finger is more prevalent in individuals aged 40 to 60 and is more common in women.
  4. Occupation: Professions that require prolonged repetitive hand activities or forceful gripping can increase the likelihood of developing the condition.

Identifying Symptoms of Trigger Finger: Pay Attention to the Warning Signs

Recognizing the symptoms of Trigger Finger is crucial for timely intervention and proper treatment. Be mindful of the following warning signs:

  1. Finger Stiffness: Experiencing stiffness in the affected finger, particularly in the morning, is a common symptom.
  2. Finger Locking or Catching: A sudden, painful locking or catching sensation upon bending or straightening the finger is a primary indicator of Trigger Finger.
  3. Tender Nodule: A tender bump or nodule may develop at the base of the affected finger.
  4. Pain: Pain or swelling at the base of the finger or palm may be a sign that Trigger Finger is developing.

Diagnosing Trigger Finger: Assessment and Examination

Accurate diagnosis of Trigger Finger involves a physical examination and assessment:

  1. Physical Examination: A hand wrist specialist will examine your hand to assess symptoms and evaluate the affected finger’s range of motion and mobility.
  2. Medical History: Providing a detailed medical history, including any underlying medical conditions or repetitive hand activities, helps the specialist determine a precise diagnosis.

Treatment Options for Trigger Finger: From Non-Invasive to Surgical Solutions

Depending on the severity of the condition, various treatment options are available for Trigger Finger:

  1. Rest and Activity Modification: Avoiding repetitive hand movements and taking intermittent breaks can aid in alleviating symptoms.
  2. Splinting: Immobilizing the affected finger with a splint can relieve pain and enable the tendon sheath to heal.
  3. Anti-inflammatory Medications: Over-the-counter pain relievers and anti-inflammatory drugs may help reduce pain and inflammation.
  4. Corticosteroid Injections: Injections administered directly into the tendon sheath can help decrease inflammation and enable the tendon to glide smoothly.
  5. Percutaneous Trigger Finger Release: This minimally invasive procedure involves using a needle to break the restrictive part of the tendon sheath without surgical incision.
  6. Surgical Intervention: In cases unresponsive to conservative treatments, a hand surgeon may recommend a surgical procedure called trigger finger release, in which the tendon sheath is carefully opened to release the trapped tendon.

Preventive Measures: Protect Your Hand Health

Take proactive steps to minimize the risk of developing a Trigger Finger by following these practical guidelines:

  1. Ergonomic Workstations: Customize your work environment by including ergonomically designed equipment such as adjustable chairs, keyboards, and mouse pads.
  2. Stretch and Take Breaks: Take regular breaks to stretch and flex your fingers, especially during repetitive tasks.
  3. Maintain a Healthy Lifestyle: Enhance overall health through balanced nutrition, regular exercise, and stress management, reducing the probability of Trigger Finger development.
  4. Use Proper Techniques: Employ proper gripping techniques and avoid excessive force when using tools or engaging in hand-intensive activities.

Rely on North Florida Hand and Wrist for Expert Treatment

The team of dedicated practitioners led by Dr. Richard D. Curtis and Dr. Jose Baez is committed to providing expert treatment and care for Trigger Finger alongside a variety of other hand and wrist conditions. By offering individualized treatment plans, state-of-the-art surgical facilities, and a patient-centered approach, we aim to help you regain and maintain your hand health, improving your overall well-being.

Don’t let Trigger Finger disrupt your everyday life; trust the expertise and care of North Florida Hand and Wrist. Schedule an appointment with our hand specialist to ensure a comprehensive evaluation and the most effective treatment plan tailored to your unique needs.