Hand pain may be coming from the bones and joints, or tendons and ligaments, or the nerves or the blood vessels or the skin and nails. Together we need to determine the site of the pain. The diagnosis is needed first before a treatment plan can be made. The pain is often accompanied by dysfunction, stiffness or swelling, and sometimes a color change. Numbness and tingling would lead me to look at a problem with the nerves. Joint pain and joint swelling would lead me to look at possible arthritis. Swelling and tenderness along a tendon or in a ligament would guide us to look there. Tendinitis or hand arthritis are almost always treated with therapy first. I work with a certified hand therapist, and you the patient, to look for a treatment plan customized to you that will get you functional and back to using your hands again.
deQuervains tendinitis and flexor or extensor tendinitis are common with overuse. We aim to get these better through therapy, and then keep them better with a home fitness program. A healthy diet helps too. Occasionally deQuervains tendinitis needs a surgical release and that can often be done under local anesthesia in the office. de Quervains Syndrome causes pain in the tendons on the thumb side of the wrist.
Hand arthritis can be rheumatoid arthritis (or other inflammatory arthritis) or osteoarthritis. These are very different problems, with osteoarthritis being more of a wear and tear on the joint issue, and the other, inflammatory arthritis, is a form of auto-immune disease. Medical management and therapy, dietary care and supplements can help. When these do not help enough, then surgery may be indicated, with treatments being either a joint fusion, or a joint replacement or arthroplasty. I would be happy to discuss and evaluate you in my office; please call us at (808) 495–5230.