Trigger finger

Sometimes, flexor tendons in the hand can become inflamed, causing the fingers to snap or lock in flexion. This is known as a trigger finger.

What causes trigger finger?

These tendons travel in a narrow tunnel and when swelling occurs, they become to large to glide properly in the tunnel. Over time the tendon may develop a nodule and the finger starts to lock. This is commonly seen in women, in diabetics or with repetitive use of the hand.

What are the symptoms?

Soreness and stiffness mainly followed by locking of the finger in a bent position.

How to diagnose it?

The diagnosis is based on the clinical history and examination. Popping is typical. Over time, the finger can become permanently stiff.

Functional treatment

Splinting, NSAIDS and rest can be efficient. Sometimes a cortisone injection can be performed.

Surgery

Endoscopic release of the pulley system causing the locking can be done in minutes under local anesthesia in most cases. There are no stitches and use of hand is unrestricted after a couple of days. Therapy is sometimes required.

*Results may vary

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Dr. Brutus offers a series of publications on a variety of health topics. Written in a clear and simple language, in collaboration with experts of various fields, these books are offered free of charge in downloadable version.

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