I think I have a trigger finger. What is the best treatment?
According to a recent review by Adams et all trigger finger is one of the more common tendon injuries in the hand and wrist. Initial treatments usually include physical therapy or home exercises, rest, splinting and NSAIDs. Splints have been shown to provide relief in forty to eighty seven percent of cases, however sometimes use of these splints can be cumbersome. Physical therapy is aimed and improving the gliding of the tendon and in one study was successful sixty nine percent of the time. This is less successful than injections but if physical therapy is successful it can be very effective for preventing recurrence. Injections to the region of pain are probably the most common treatment and can be very effective, between sixty to ninety percent positive response. There are some complications following steroid injection. They are uncommon but can include fat atrophy, tendon rupture and elevation of blood glucose levels, particular in patients with diabetes. If conservative treatments are not successful, surgery is an option. In this procedure the pulley under which the tendon runs can be released either with an open or percutaneous approach. Complications from surgery to release this pulley are rare but can include injury to the nerves in the area, stiffness, bowstringing, and wound complications.