de Quervains tenosynovitis is a painful condition affecting the tendons of the thumb that leads to pain in the thumb and wrist. It is a repetitive strain injury (RSI) caused due to repetitive hand or wrist movement, though conditions such as rheumatoid arthritis or a restrictive scar tissue on the thumb tendons after an injury or surgery can also contribute to this condition. It is more commonly seen in pregnant women and in some professions and hobbies that involve repetitive hand and wrist motions such as hairdressers or pianists, those who play golf or racket sports or those who use thumb constantly for texting or gaming.
5 signs that you may be suffering from de Quervain's tenosynovitis:
- Pain tenderness and swelling at the base of your thumb and the wrist. When left untreated, pain may extend in the forearm.
- Difficulty moving your thumb and wrist when grasping or pinching
- Pain when moving the wrist from side to side or twisting it.
- Weakness or achy tiredness in the thumb.
- A catching or snapping sensation with movement of the thumb in more chronic cases.
Watch this video for exercises that you can do for this condition
As de Quervain's tenosynovitis is a repetitive strain injury, these precautions when followed with the exercises above can help to prevent recurrence:
- Avoid repetitive movements of the thumb.
- Avoid pinching movements with the thumb.
- Avoid chronic overuse of the hand in general. Take breaks and do stretches if you need to continue the activities.
- Avoid using the thumb for hours of texting and gaming.
- Use a brace or thumb support for stabilising the thumb.
- If you play racquet sports then get trained to avoid excessive strain on the thumb.
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