Stenosing Tenosynovitis (Trigger Finger)

What is Stenosing Tenosynovitis (Trigger Finger)


Trigger finger and thumb are painful conditions that cause the fingers or thumb to catch or lock in a bent position. The problems often stem from inflammation of tendons located within a protective covering called the tendon sheath.
The affected tendons are tough, fibrous bands of tissue that connect the muscles of the forearm to your finger and thumb bones. Together, the tendons and muscles allow you to bend and extend your fingers and thumb, for example, as in making a fist.
>A tendon usually glides quite easily through the tissue that covers it (also called a sheath) because of a lubricating membrane surrounding the joint called the synovium. Occasionally a tendon may become inflamed and swollen. When this happens, bending the finger or thumb may pull the inflamed portion through a narrowed tendon sheath, making it snap or pop.

What causes Trigger Finger?


Trigger finger may be caused by highly repetitive or forceful use of the finger and thumb. Medical conditions that cause changes in tissues -- such as rheumatoid arthritis, gout or diabetes -- also may result in trigger finger. Prolonged, strenuous grasping, such as with power tools, also may aggravate the condition.

What are the symptoms?


One of the first symptoms may be soreness at the base of the finger or thumb. The most common symptom is a painful clicking or snapping when attempting to flex or extend the affected finger. This catching sensation tends to worsen after periods of inactivity and loosen up with movement.
In some cases, the finger or thumb that is affected locks in a flexed position or in an extended position as the condition becomes more severe, and must be gently straightened with the other hand. Joint contraction or stiffening may eventually occur.

How Is It Treated?


The first step to recovery is to limit activities that aggravate the condition. It is recommended that you see your doctor for this condition and see if it can be treated by or if it might require surgical correction.