What is Trigger Finger Syndrome?
Trigger finger is caused when there is a problem with the flexor tendons in the hand. Inflammation or swelling in this area prevents the tendons from moving smoothly through the tendon sheath.
The tendon sheath is like a tunnel that the tendons pass through and connect to the muscles in the forearm. The tendons need to glide through the tendon sheath unrestricted to straighten or bend your fingers. When there is swelling or inflammation in this area, it makes bending the fingers or thumb very difficult and uncomfortable.
Reasons to have Trigger Finger Surgery
Sufferers of trigger finger may experience pain at the base of the affected finger or thumb and stiffness or clicking when moving the affected finger. As the condition worsens, your finger may get stuck in a bent position then suddenly pop straight. If left untreated, the finger or thumb may not straighten at all.
Living with pain and not having full function of your hand and fingers can be very frustrating. There are treatment options for trigger finger depending on the severity of your symptoms, how long you have had them and how they impact your lifestyle. Sometimes the condition can get better using treatments like rest, anti-inflammatory medication, steroid injections and splint supports. Where conservative treatments haven’t provided satisfactory results, you may wish to consider surgical intervention.
The Trigger Finger Release Procedure
The procedure to correct trigger finger is performed as day surgery, and patients can return home the same day. A small incision is made in the palm of your hand, along one of the natural creases, so the scar is less noticeable. The surgeon will then cut through the tendon sheath to create a wider opening and allow the tendon to move through it more easily.
This procedure does not require a general anaesthetic. The area will be numbed using a local anaesthetic, and some patients request mild sedation if they are anxious.
Recovery after Trigger Finger Surgery
You should be able to move your finger immediately after surgery. There may be some swelling or tenderness around the wound, which should subside after a few days.
A dressing will be applied to keep the wound clean and free of infection. This dressing can usually be removed or changed after two to three days, allowing for more unrestricted movement of the finger. We will provide you with detailed aftercare instructions, including how to clean and dress the wound.
You should be able to return to daily activities like writing, using a computer and driving within a few days. You should avoid sports and heavier activities for two or three weeks, or once your wound has healed and you can grip again.
Contact Dr Turner’s office today to discuss how we can help relieve the pain and gain back full use of your hand through trigger finger surgery.