How to Release a Stuck Trigger Finger 

Stenosing tenosynovitis, more commonly known as trigger finger, is a medical condition that causes your finger to be stuck in a bent position. Your finger may straighten or bend back with a snap. If you’re wondering how to release a stuck trigger finger, here’s what you need to know. 

What is Trigger Finger?

Trigger finger can affect the tendons in the hands. As the name suggests, it’s a condition where one of your fingers gets stuck in a bent position, like a trigger. 

Your tendons are surrounded by a sheath. Trigger finger occurs when there’s inflammation within the sheath around the tendons. In some cases, trigger finger can be so severe that the affected finger can become locked or stuck. 

Trigger finger disease (locking finger or stenosing tenosynovitis disorder), hand anatomy with highlight on painful area. Patient has palm pain and catching of finger problem. Medical symptom concept
Trigger Finger

What Causes Your Trigger Finger to Lock Up?

Trigger finger can correct itself. However, in more severe cases, the finger can become locked in a bent position. After becoming unstuck, it can release quickly as if a trigger is being released. But when the finger does not snap back, you may need surgery to fix it. 

Although symptoms can be similar, trigger finger is different from Dupuytren’s contracture. For more information, we talk about the difference between the two in this guide on trigger finger vs Dupuytren’s contracture

Can Trigger Finger Get Stuck Permanently?

In severe cases where the trigger finger goes without treatment, the finger can get stuck permanently in a bent position. This would make everyday tasks very difficult and can really get in the way of your normal activities. The severity of trigger finger can range from an annoying pop to the joint being stuck as you extend the finger. Symptoms can progress from mild to severe, including: 

  • Finger stiffness (especially in the morning) 
  • Pain 
  • Popping or clicking as you move the finger 
  • Finger locking in a bent position that suddenly pops 
  • Finger locked in a bent position which can’t be straightened 

Over time, an untreated trigger finger can get worse. It’s important to seek help as you spot trigger finger symptoms as more mild cases may only need non-surgical treatment such as local injections or splinting the finger. 

Stuck Trigger Finger Release

If a stuck trigger finger can’t be treated through non-surgical options, your doctor may recommend surgery. Wearing a splint, resting your hands, and some stretching exercises may help to alleviate trigger finger without surgery. However, in more severe cases where there’s a lot of pain when the finger is locked, surgery may be the most effective option. 

The aim of the surgery is to create space so that the tendon can move more freely. By increasing the space for the flexor tendon to move around, the surgery can improve the finger’s motion. 

The Harley Clinic: How to Release a Stuck Trigger Finger 

If you’re struggling with symptoms of trigger finger and wondering how to release a stuck trigger finger, speak to the experts at the Harley Clinic. Book a consultation today at our Harley Street clinic. 

We also offer hand surgery for carpal tunnel syndrome, Dupuytren’s contracture, De Quervain syndrome, and ganglion cysts

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