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Thumb pain review

What are the causes of thumb pain?

Since the thumb is the finger that we used the most, it is not unusual that it is, very frequently, exposed to various injuries, that can affect our grip  These problems could make, performing some usually simple activities, difficult or impossible. Aside from a thumb injury and fracture, other causes of pain in this finger can be skier’s thumb, blackberry thumb, thumb arthritis and carpal tunnel syndrome.

Skier’s thumb is caused by sprain or injury to the ligament that is called ulnar collateral, while blackberry thumb is a rather new condition caused by the overuse of the thumb in text messaging. Arthritis can affect the thumb as well as any other joint in the body, which results in stiffness and limited ability to move that finger. Carpal tunnel syndrome is caused when the median nerve at wrist is compressed, which results in numbness that spreads to other fingers and sometimes even the greatest part of the hand.

How can it be treated?

Just as it goes for other problems, the treatment of this one, depends on the cause, which is why it is important to determine what it is. Medications are used to help with the pain management, and NSAIDs or pain relievers are the most frequent choice, although corticosteroids are an option for relieving the pain and swelling. An important role in the process of recovery has rest, because it is important to avoid the use of the injured finger. Splints can help in this significantly, which is why some cases require them to be used day and night. Physical therapy can help with every single symptom, and it can significantly improve functioning of the thumb.

Surgery is an option only when other methods that are not invasive do not help. Several types of surgeries can be performed on the thumb, but it also depends on the cause and the condition of the finger in question. These surgeries usually do not require from the patient to spend some time in the hospital, and the recovery period usually lasts for some six months, because the splint has to be worn for approximately six weeks, and then physical therapy takes place. 

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