December 10, 2023

How to Wrap Wrist For De Quervain's Tenosynovitis

Tendons are the tissue that connects muscles to bones. They slide smoothly through a sheath (protective covering) in your wrist called the thumb sheath or extensor compartment. This allows you to twist your wrist and grasp objects with your hand and thumb.

But if the sheath gets swollen, it can cause pain and restrict your movement. The condition is called de quervain's tenosynovitis.

The pain typically occurs on the thumb side of your wrist and can extend to your forearm or finger. It gets worse with repetitive motions like twisting your wrist, gripping or pinching. It also can get worse when you're active. It may cause a snapping or popping sensation. Sometimes the pain goes away on its own if you give your wrist and thumb time to rest.

Your healthcare provider can diagnose the condition by a physical exam. They'll ask you to make a fist with your fingers wrapped over your thumb and move your wrist up and down (like shaking someone's hand). This motion singles out the tendons affected by de Quervain's tenosynovitis. Your provider might also use imaging tests like X-rays to rule out other wrist conditions that could be causing your pain.

Most people can be treated with splints, NSAIDs and activity modification. A physical therapist can teach you stretches and strengthening exercises. But you should avoid resuming physical activities until your provider says it's OK. This will prevent you from reinjuring the tendons and slowing your healing. BFST(r) Wraps can help speed your recovery by promoting blood flow to the injured area. Start with a 20 minute treatment during less active times of the day and increase to 3 or more treatments per day.

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