Do You Have De Quervain’s Syndrome?


If you’ve been experiencing discomfort in your wrist and thumb with everyday activities such as typing on your phone or pouring a cup of coffee, it may be time to seek the care of a specialist.

Our team of hand specialists and hand surgeons located in Fresno and Visalia, CA, specialize in orthopedic problems of the hand and upper extremity. Our board-certified upper extremity surgeons are dedicated to identifying the underlying cause of your musculoskeletal pain and delivering effective treatment. Here is useful information about de Quervain’s syndrome and how you can achieve relief:

De Quervain’s Syndrome: An Overview

Named after the Swiss physician who was the first to describe the condition, de Quervain’s syndrome refers to the inflammation of the tendons and surrounding tissue at the wrist and the base of the thumb. This inflammation affects the tendons that allow the thumb to move away from the other fingers and is commonly experienced during repetitive movements during activities such as cooking, gardening, child care and household tasks.

The tendons in the wrist and thumb are housed within a sheath of surrounding tissue. Inflammation of these tendons can lead to swelling and restriction of movement within the sheath, resulting in discomfort when performing activities such as making a fist, grasping objects, or twisting the wrist.

What are the Causes of De Quervain’s Syndrome?

De Quervain’s syndrome may develop due to repetitive movements that stress the tendons located in the thumb and wrist. A common example of such activity is playing computer games or texting, which can significantly strain the thumb.

Additionally, other actions that involve repetitive motions of the thumb and wrist can lead to the development of de Quervain’s syndrome.

Treatment for De Quervain’s Syndrome

The most effective treatment for de Quervain’s syndrome can vary depending on the severity of the condition. A range of options are available to alleviate discomfort.

Initial Measures for Alleviating Pain

The initial approach towards managing pain associated with de Quervain’s syndrome involves rest and the application of ice to reduce swelling and alleviate discomfort. Over-the-counter anti-inflammatory pain medication may also be taken for relief.

Corticosteroid Injection

For individuals experiencing more severe discomfort, corticosteroid injections may be administered by a provider at our office to alleviate symptoms.

Thumb and Wrist Bracing

A medical-grade splint, which your provider may recommend, can be utilized to restrict excessive movement of the thumb and wrist during the healing process of the tendons.

Physical Therapy

After reducing inflammation, your physician will guide you in performing daily therapeutic exercises to strengthen your hand, wrist, and arm muscles, promoting recovery and reducing the risk of further injury.

Surgical Intervention

Surgical intervention may be necessary in rare cases where conservative treatment methods have not produced the desired results. The procedure, classified as a minor surgical procedure and called de Quervain’s release, involves the release of the tendons from their surrounding sheath to improve their movement during hand usage.

Schedule an Appointment

Take control of your hand pain and experience relief by scheduling a consultation today! At Regional Hand Center, located in Fresno and Visalia, CA, our highly-skilled and experienced providers are here to help you. Schedule an appointment by calling or filling out our online contact form.

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