Trigger Finger Thumb - Your Questions Answered  cover

Trigger Finger Thumb – Your Questions Answered 

When talking about trigger finger, it’s normal to think about your fingers. But the painful condition can affect your thumb too. Let’s answer your question about trigger finger thumb. 

Can Trigger Finger Be in the Thumb?

The short answer is yes, you can get trigger finger in the thumb. When the condition occurs in the thumb, the thumb will lock or click into a bent position. This is usually painful and uncomfortable. Symptoms of trigger finger include pain at the base of the thumb or finger and locking and catching the finger when flexing or extending. 

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 a Trigger Thumb?

In many cases, trigger thumb can appear for no apparent reason. Trigger thumb occurs when there’s swelling in one of the tendons that run along the thumb and fingers. The exact cause of this swelling isn’t fully understood. But, trigger finger can occur after injury and is more common in people with rheumatoid arthritis. It can also be aggravated by repetitive movements. 

How Do You Fix a Trigger Thumb?

The treatment for trigger thumb is the same as trigger finger. Typically, your doctor will recommend a non-surgical approach first, such as: 

If the affected thumb doesn’t respond to non-surgical treatments, then your doctor may recommend surgery. Trigger finger release surgery involves surgical decompression of the affected tendon to release the trigger finger thumb.

What Happens to Untreated Trigger Thumb?

In some cases, trigger finger may clear up on its own. However, there’s a chance that the affected finger or thumb can become permanently bent, which will make it really difficult to perform daily tasks. By seeking out treatment early, your doctor will be able to advise you on the best treatment path possible for your individual case. 

Will Trigger Thumb Go Away On Its Own?

For some patients with mild trigger finger thumb, it may clear up on its own. But, as there is a chance that the affected thumb can get worse and permanently bend, it’s a good idea to speak with a medical professional if you have any concerns. If the condition occurs after a certain activity and you stop that activity, there is a chance that trigger thumb may go away on its own. However, your doctor does need to assess the severity, so they can recommend the best course of treatment. 

Trigger Finger Treatment at the Harley Clinic 

Depending on the severity of trigger finger/thumb, there is a range of treatments available. It’s normal for your doctor to try non-surgical treatments to start. If there’s no improvement, then trigger finger surgery may be required. 

During trigger finger release surgery, your surgeon will release the tendon tunnel so that the pressure comes off the affected tendon. Typically, it will take a couple of weeks to heal. Following hand surgery, patients tend to need hand therapy to help them regain strength, dexterity, and normal function. 

If you’re worried about trigger finger/thumb, speak to a hand specialist at The Harley Clinic. Book a consultation today, and we can talk through your treatment options, so you have all the information you need to move forward. 

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