Trigger Finger (Flexor Tendinitis)
I’ve been suffering from FlexorTendinitis. In layman’s word it is called Trigger Finger. It started two years ago on my right hand thumb and it is recurring again lately. This time it’s not only my thumb but my right hand’s fore and middle fingers as well. My fingers bend and lock especially at night and are very painful to straighten in the morning.
Trigger finger is a type of tendinitis, develops in the tendons which bend the fingers. There are no muscles in the fingers themselves. Muscles in the forearm are connected to the finger bones by smooth, flexible strings, called tendons. The muscles pull on the tendons, which then bend the finger joints The flexor tendons are smooth, flexible, thick strings - they look a bit like clothesline rope. They work like a bicycle brake cable to bend your fingers, sliding in and out of the finger as it straightens and bends.
Cause: Tendon swelling (tendinitis) results from a person's own tendency to collect fluid around their tendons and joints. This may be aggravated by repetitive or strenuous activities. When the tendons which bend the fingers (the flexor tendons) become irritated, they can cause pain, swelling, and stiffness. Tendon swelling interferes with the normal movement of the tendons and can cause the finger to and click, catch ("triggering") or lock in position.
Symptoms of finger tendonitis and thumb tendinitis include:
- Pain and tenderness along the flexor tendon, in proximity to the finger or thumb joints.
- Pain is worse with movement or repetitive activity.
- Pain at night.
- Tenderness and swelling over the bit where the tendon inserts onto the finger or thumb bone.
- Pain when you try to bend the finger or thumb against resistance.
Prescription: The doctor advised and prescribed me the following:
- To ice the swollen area for five to fifteen minutes at a time on the area which is most swollen and tender until it feels numb.
- Arcoxia (Etoricoxib) 120 mg for pain and anti inflammatory.
- Fastum Gel - massaging a small amount on the affected area for 1-3 minutes, 2-3 times a day
- If the Etoricoxib does not relieve the pain I have to get back for a steroid injection. Methylprednisolone 40mg/ml to be injected to the sore area, but the doctor informed me that no more than two shots are given into one finger because more may lead to complications, such as tendon rupture.
- Just in case there is no progress after a week of injecting Methylprednisolone and taking etoricoxib medicines, he suggested to perform a surgery on it. Oh my! I do not like to undergo a surgery, so I keep on praying and followed religiously all his advices. Thank God! the swelling and pain got away.
The doctor advised me to avoid activities which involve a sustained grip. Hold off on the use of grip strengthening devices or exercises involving repetitive squeezing like washing clothes - these put stress on the irritated tendon.
Wear a splint to keep the finger straight, especially when sleeping. The splint will limit finger bending. It will help rehabilitate flexibility, strength and muscle imbalance, and control physical activities.
If you happen to be having the symptoms of a Trigger Finger, I strongly suggest that you seek for medical help at once, before it will get worst. The medications and prescription given to me may not be suitable in all cases. I just only showed you my personal experience on how I was able to recuperate from a finger tendinitis.
Here is a video I researched on to give you an educational view about Flexor Tendinitis.