Do you often experience a painful catching or popping sensation when straightening your finger from a bent position? If so, your discomfort may be due to a condition called trigger finger. Fortunately, trigger finger is highly treatable with the proper care and expertise. At the Hand Surgery Center of Excellence in Beverly Hills, our renowned team of hand specialists offers comprehensive treatment and exceptional results for patients with trigger finger.
What is Trigger Finger?
The tendons in our fingers are surrounded and lubricated by a thin sheath, which allows them to slide smoothly back and forth as the finger bends and straightens. Trigger finger occurs when the protective sheath around a tendon becomes irritated and swollen, limiting the ability to extend the finger from a flexed position. Over time, the tendon sheath may form a tightened nodule that causes pain, stiffness, and severe difficulty when attempting to bend the affected finger.
Risk Factors for Trigger Finger
Trigger finger is often caused by overuse of the hand during repetitive activities, such as computer and machine operation or playing musical instruments. Inflammation of the hands and fingers caused by an underlying health condition can also lead a person to develop trigger finger. The following risk factors increase your chance of developing trigger finger:
- 40-60 years of age
- History of repetitive hand motion
- History of diabetes, gout, hypothyroidism, or rheumatoid arthritis
Treatment for Trigger Finger
Effective treatment for trigger finger first involves determining the cause of tendon sheath inflammation. Rest and avoidance of repetitive hand and finger motions may relieve mild symptoms of trigger finger. A brace or splint may be used while sleeping to help prevent bending of the fingers, which can aggravate trigger finger symptoms. Finally, anti-inflammatory medications and steroid injections can help to relieve pain and inflammation at the sight of the swollen tendon sheath.
In some cases, trigger finger may become so severe that the finger becomes locked in the bent position.
Additionally, patients who have health conditions such as diabetes may be unable to achieve relief for pain and inflammation with anti-inflammatory medication or steroid injections. People who fit these criteria may be good candidates for trigger finger release surgery.
At the Hand Surgery Center of Excellence, our surgeons are highly experienced with a simple, effective procedure to correct trigger finger. Trigger finger release surgery involves making a small incision in the palm of the hand to reveal the affected tendon sheath. The portion of the tendon sheath that has become compressed or irritated is cut, freeing the tendon from its restricted position. After the procedure, the tendon sheath heals into a looser position, giving the tendon more room to slide back and forth through it. Trigger finger release is performed on an outpatient basis and typically provides immediate
Contact a Beverly Hills Hand Surgeon
The Hand Surgery Center of Excellence provides both conservative, non-surgical management as well as surgical treatment for trigger finger. To schedule a consultation with one of our experienced hand surgeons in Beverly Hills, you can contact us by calling (888) 529-1873.