Joints are lined with cartilage and lubricated with synovial fluid. Injury or wear and tear of this cartilage leads to arthritis

What causes arthritis of the fingers?

Arthritis can result from an old fracture affecting the joint and damaging the cartilage. Most often, the cause is simple degeneration, often age related or hereditary.


Swelling of the joint, cyst formation, pain, subluxation, instability of the joint and weakness.

How to diagnose it?

Clinical examination will demonstrate:

  • Tenderness
  • Oedema
  • Presence of cysts
  • Deformity and stiffness
  • Weakness
  • Compression of the joint reproduces pain

X-rays will demonstrate loss of joint space, joint dislocation and severity of the arthritis.

Functional treatment

Local and systemic anti-inflammatories, cortisone injections and splinting are the first line of treatment.


Several surgical procedures can be performed to improve symptoms and function of the hand. Procedures range from minimally invasive arthroscopic decompression of the joint, to joint replacement with an implant or joint fusion and stabilization.
Arthritis of the fingers Dr Brutus Montreal