Suffering from Wrist Pain? Louisville Orthopedic Surgeon Explains De Quervain’s Tenosynovitis or “Gamer’s Thumb”

Are you suffering from De Quervain’s Tenosynovitis? If you are experiencing pain on the inside of your wrist that causes you discomfort whenever you hold things or clench your fist, you might have De Quervain’s Tenosynovitis.

This condition, which is also sometimes called gamer’s thumb, affects the two tendons around the thumb called the extensor pollicis brevis or EPB and the abductor pollicis longus or APL.  Tenosynovitis occurs when the sheath linings that cover tendons become inflamed.

Named after a nineteenth-century surgeon from Switzerland, De Quervain syndrome tends to be particularly common among people who engage in repetitive hand movements for longer periods of time so it is often considered a repetitive strain injury. These might be certain sports activities or work-specific positions. It can also be caused by arthritis.

Other symptoms of De Quervain’s Tenosynovitis tend to include swelling around your thumb. You should talk with your orthopedic doctor if you are suffering from this pain. It is important for your orthopedic physician to correctly diagnose your condition since this type of pain may be caused by something else like osteoarthritis.

Treatment for De Quervain’s Tenosynovitis can include resting your thumb, using ice packs, and taking anti-inflammatory medication like ibuprofen.  A physical therapist may be able to provide guidance on movements that do not agitate the condition.

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