Houston Methodist. Leading Medicine

Hand FAQ


I am a full-time nurse on a pediatric unit. For two months I've had a painful spot on my wrist every time I use my thumb. Trying to lift the babies and children has become hard. I've had the painful area injected with cortisone twice, and I'm wearing a splint. Is there anything else that could help?


You may have a chronic tendonitis. If you haven't tried an anti-inflammatory medicine, now might be a good time to give that a try. Physical therapy is another possible option. The therapist can use deep heat along with friction massage and/or tendon and nerve mobilization. These techniques can help reduce inflammation and help the tendon to glide again.

If conservative care doesn't work, then surgery is another option. The doctor can make a cut along the outside covering of the tendon (the tendon sheath). The tendons are separated from one another. This operation releases pressure on the tendon and allows it to move freely.

Yukio Abe, MD, PhD, et al. Extensor Pollicis Longus Tenosynovitis Mimicking de Quervain's Disease Because of Its Course Through the First Extensor Compartment: A Report of 2 Cases. In The Journal of Hand Surgery. March 2004. Vol. 29A. No. 2. Pp. 225-229.

*Disclaimer:* The information contained herein is compiled from a variety of sources. It may not be complete or timely. It does not cover all diseases, physical conditions, ailments or treatments. The information should NOT be used in place of visit with your healthcare provider, nor should you disregard the advice of your health care provider because of any information you read in this topic.
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